Category Archives:PI Legal Advice

Cobertura PIP

Cobertura PIP

– Por El Abogado De Lesiones Personales De Tampa, Martin J. Hernández

El seguro de daños personales (PIP), o seguro de automóvil “sin culpa”, es obligatorio por el estado de Florida. PIP paga hasta $ 10,000 por las lesiones que sufra en un accidente, independientemente de quién tuvo la culpa.

¿Qué Cubre PIP?

Florida PIP cubre los costos médicos, salarios perdidos y beneficios por muerte, y generalmente cubrirá las lesiones de cualquier persona en su hogar. PIP puede cubrir lo siguiente:

  • Servicios médicos y medicamentos.
  • Servicios quirúrgicos y gastos hospitalarios.
  • Costos de rehabilitación
  • Servicios de diagnóstico
  • Servicios ambulatorios

PIP cubrirá el 80% de sus costos médicos. Si su lesión no es una emergencia, solo tendrá derecho a $ 2,500 en beneficios. Si se lesiona en un accidente y está incapacitado, PIP pagará el 60% de su salario perdido, sujeto a un límite de $ 10,000. Si el asegurado muere en el accidente, PIP pagará sus gastos de funeral y entierro además de los costos médicos.

¿Con Quién Debo Comunicarme Si Tengo Un Accidente Automovilístico?

Si ha sido lesionado en un accidente automovilístico, comuníquese con un abogado lo antes posible. Navegar por PIP y determinar lesiones sostenidas en un accidente automovilístico suele ser complejo. Los daños son a menudo complicados. El tratamiento de las lesiones sostenidas puede ser costoso, doloroso y puede llevar meses o incluso años. La cobertura de seguro, especialmente la PIP y la cobertura de motorista no asegurado (UM), es muy importante. Un abogado con experiencia en accidentes automovilísticos puede investigar y buscar agresivamente la compensación financiera a la que tiene derecho por el dolor y el sufrimiento y por el tratamiento y la atención médica. Un abogado con experiencia en accidentes automovilísticos analizará exhaustivamente su caso y explicará las disposiciones del seguro y las opciones que tiene para obtener una compensación justa.

Si usted o un ser querido ha sido lesionado en un accidente automovilístico debido a la negligencia de otro, tiene derecho a una indemnización. Un abogado con experiencia en accidentes de vehículos de motor determinará la cobertura de seguro disponible y lo ayudará a resolver el asunto o a presentar una demanda por lesiones personales que solicite una indemnización.

¿Por Qué Fernández Y Hernández?

Los abogados con experiencia en lesiones personales en Fernandez & Hernandez pueden investigar y determinar la responsabilidad. Los abogados de Fernández y Hernández determinarán qué daños y gastos compensatorios son justos para su tratamiento médico, pérdida de ingresos, daños a la propiedad, dolor y sufrimiento y angustia mental. Si se determina que la parte responsable de sus lesiones es especialmente negligente y descuidada, se pueden otorgar daños punitivos.

El abogado Martin J. Hernández, de Fernández y Hernández, proporciona representación legal para víctimas y familias en casos de accidentes automovilísticos y casos de muerte por negligencia. Nuestros abogados de lesiones personales en Tampa agradecen la oportunidad de entrevistarnos con usted y sus seres queridos. Lo invitamos a revisar nuestros resultados recientes para acuerdos y veredictos de prueba. Nuestras calificaciones y antecedentes también están disponibles para usted. Recomendamos también leer nuestros comentarios en Google Reviews, Avvo y Yelp. Nuestros abogados de Tampa, Martin Hernández y Daniel Fernández también son bilingües.

Los abogados de lesiones personales de Tampa en Fernández y Hernández sirven a las comunidades de Florida, incluyendo Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, San Petersburgo, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland y muchos otros vecindarios en el área de Tampa Bay.

No importa cuán graves o mínimas sean sus lesiones, lucharemos arduamente para obtener una compensación por sus facturas médicas, dolor y sufrimiento, y la pérdida de salarios. El abogado Martin J. Hernandez puede ayudarlo a guiarlo en el proceso. En Fernandez & Hernandez sabemos cómo ayudarlo a usted y a su familia después de cualquier tipo de accidente, y tenemos los recursos para hacerlo. Cuando llame a Fernández y Hernández, responderemos a todas sus preguntas rápidamente.

Nuestros abogados de lesiones personales pueden ayudarlo en todas las fases de lesiones y casos de muerte por negligencia. Manejamos las reclamaciones por lesiones personales desde la investigación inicial hasta el juicio y los procedimientos de apelación. En Fernández y Hernández, iremos a juicio, si es necesario, y lucharemos en su nombre, y tenemos los resultados para demostrarlo.

Si ha estado involucrado en un accidente automovilístico en el área de Tampa Bay, llame al abogado de lesiones personales de Tampa, Martin J. Hernandez de Fernandez & Hernandez al 813-229-5353

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Personal Injury Protection’s 14 Day rule and Emergency Medical Condition and how this affects your injury case

Personal Injury Protection’s 14 Day rule and Emergency Medical Condition and how this affects your injury case

By: Tampa Injury Attorney, Martin J Hernandez

Although this has been the law for 4 years, not everyone understands the 14 day rule and how it affects them. There are two points that I often find clients lost on: the14-day rule and the Emergency Medical Condition rule.

 PIP 14-Day Rule

Florida’s PIP statute governs the auto insurance that all drivers (except motorcyclists and cabs (but Uber and Lyft are required to carry)) are required to carry. The idea is to get every injured person in an auto accident medical coverage without having to fight over who is at fault (i.e., “no he ran the red light not me”).  This why the coverage is sometimes referred to as ‘Florida No-Fault Insurance’.  Read the language of § 627.736 here.

One of the new provisions has a major impact on thousands of Floridians: the 14-day rule or provision.

Because of Florida PIP, all drivers have insurance coverage which entitles them to have 80% of their medical expenses paid and 60% of lost wages paid, but these amounts cannot be more than $10,000 total.  The statute, however, states that a motorist has 14 days after an automobile accident to seek medical treatment from either a hospital facility, emergency transport, medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, chiropractor, or a dentist.

If you miss that 14-day window, you forfeited the PIP coverage that you have been paying for all along!  This means that if the symptoms do not surface within the first two week period or you think you can deal with it, those injuries will not be covered.

The new law limits the amount insurance companies must pay for the claims submitted.  Yes, that’s right.  Insurance companies found a way not to pay for medical bills submitted; this is just the way they want it.  Failure to meet the 14 day requirement means that the injured party must pay for the medical bills.

Because of these new provisions, insurance companies don’t have to cover as many people, increasing their profits.

Why the change? According to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, the justification for the change is to decrease PIP fraud. According to their study that justified the change in the law, personal injury protection fraud was a $600 million problem in the state of Florida.  The intent was to combat PIP fraud so that premiums would go down.  The idea was that those who are really injured will seek medical attention right away.

As to whether this change caused premiums to go down?  You make the call if your auto insurance has gone down since 2012.

PIP Emergency Medical Condition (EMC)

The amended PIP Statute (Florida Statute §§ 627.736 and 627.732), left many physicians confused as to what truly constitutes such a condition. The amendment does expressly define an Emergency Medical Condition (EMC) as a medical condition: manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, which may include severe pain, such that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in any of the following:

  • Serious jeopardy to patient health,
  • Serious impairment to bodily functions,
  • Serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.

However, as you can tell, there is plenty of room for interpretation and clarity is not one of the law’s virtues.

The amended Florida “No-Fault” Statute went into effect on January 1, 2014, and expressly states that a finding of an EMC must take place in order for the claimant (injured person) to have access to the full $10,000 mentioned earlier.

If a physician determines that a claimant’s injuries do not meet the level of an EMC, then they are only entitled to just $2500 in PIP benefits for their medical treatment.

What makes the provision so confusing is that the statute does not make clear exactly how a medical professional is supposed to decide that an injured person has an EMC.

Contact an Experienced Florida PIP Attorney

At Fernandez and Hernandez, we have an experienced team of attorneys who battle insurance companies on a daily basis. Because of the changes made in 2012, it is now more difficult than ever to be reimbursed for damages as a result of an auto accident. Florida’s No-Fault insurance was supposed to make things easier. Instead, insurance companies have taken advantage of the recent changes to dispute and deny more and more claims.

Contact a personal injury attorney to discuss the specifics of your case and decide whether you need legal representation.  A personal injury attorney could mean the difference between getting a settlement that barely covers your expenses or a settlement or verdict that pays all of your bills and allows you to get back to living your life.

At Fernandez & Hernandez, we understand that being seriously injured or suffering the sudden loss of a loved one is a traumatic and life changing event.  If you or a loved one has been seriously injured by a distracted driver in the Tampa Bay area contact a personal injury lawyer at Fernandez & Hernandez to schedule a free consultation.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

What to Do After a Vehicle Accident

What to Do After a Vehicle Accident

– by Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez

Tampa Bay Area Auto Accident Injury Lawyer

The Personal Injury and wrongful death attorneys at the Fernandez & Hernandez know what to do to help you and your family following any kind of accident.

What to Do After a Car AccidentAfter an accident, it is important to determine whether anyone witnessed the accident. In some accident situations it can take a while for police to arrive. During that time, a valuable eyewitness may leave the scene. Insurance companies often delay or otherwise deny valid claims by arguing that there is fault on the innocent, injured driver’s part. This is why the driver should try to obtain witness information.

A driver must stop the vehicle immediately after an accident and should position the vehicle in a manner that will not obstruct other motorists. It is not unusual for another vehicle to come crashing into the scene of a car accident. Many accidents are made worse when another driver slows to look at an accident and an inattentive driver crashes into them, sending both cars into the first accident scene. You can minimize the risk of harm to yourself and others by making sure neither you nor the other parties are exposed to the danger of a second accident. If the accident is minor and nobody was injured, move the vehicles off the road is possible to avoid obstructing traffic.  However, if the accident led to injury, death or major property damage, the cars should remain in place until law enforcement arrives. Turn on the car’s hazard lights or place warning triangles on the road. Irrespective of whether the cars remain on the road or are moved, all persons should move out of the road.

If someone has been hurt, a driver should attempt to secure medical help right away, and a driver should remain at the scene until help arrives. Leaving the scene of a car accident prematurely is referred to as a hit-and-run and is a serious offense especially if injury or death occurred. Even when the car accident does not seem serious and there are no obvious injuries, it is best to play it safe by staying to make an accurate assessment of the damage. Make sure everyone else is alright and provide first aid where required and do not move seriously injured individuals.

Accidents involving an injury or death, a hit-and-run or intoxicated driver, or property damage that appears to be over $500, should be reported to law enforcement immediately. The investigating officer will make a written report on all accidents involving a death or injury.

If an officer completes a crash report you will not need to personally file a crash report. However, if a crash report has not been filed by law enforcement, you will need to do so within 10 days of the accident.

If you are in an accident involving an unoccupied vehicle or property other than a vehicle, you are required to notify the owner. If you cannot find the owner, then attach a note to the damaged vehicle or property which contains your name, address, and license plate number. Also, report the accident to law enforcement right away.

Take pictures of the accident scene. It can be very helpful to take a few photos of the accident scene and how the cars were positioned. Insurance companies will use any excuse to deny paying a claim. Having a picture of the cars showing how they were positioned immediately after the accident is often helpful in explaining how the accident occurred and who was at fault.

Get medical attention. In many cases, the injured individual does not realize they are hurt until hours or days later. Some people do not seek medical attention hoping their symptoms get better. Serious neck and back injuries can result, even from low impact car accidents, such as rear end car accidents. Getting prompt medical attention is important to document the injuries and establish that they were in fact, caused by the car accident.

Call 911 and the Police. The 911 call is an official notification that an accident has occurred and you can request medical assistance if there is an injury or fatality. Calling law enforcement will provide important support in a potential lawsuit in the future since law enforcement will write a report that records their assessment of who was at fault. The police record will detail all key elements of the collision including names, vehicle registration, road conditions and witness statements.

Under the Florida No-Fault Law, every driver who operates a motor vehicle registered in the State of Florida, must have a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. A driver’s PIP coverage is meant to cover medical bills and lost wages the driver may suffer in an accident, no matter who caused the accident. This PIP will cover the first $10,000 of a person’s medical coverage, minus the deductible, and will come from the operators insurance, no matter who was at fault.  Please note that while PIP is mandatory in Florida, it covers only medical bills and lost wages, not any damage that results from an accident whether that is damage to property or the car itself.

Once an accident occurs, the insurance companies of the drivers involved will usually establish who is financially liable. Many times, the matter is closed with mutual agreement. In other instances however, one party may want the issue decided by the courts.

Contact a personal injury attorney to discuss the specifics of your case and decide whether you need legal representation.  A personal injury attorney could mean the difference between getting a settlement that barely covers your expenses or a settlement or verdict that pays all of your bills and allows you to get back to living your life.

At Fernandez & Hernandez, we understand that being seriously injured or suffering the sudden loss of a loved one is a traumatic and life changing event.  If you or a loved one has been seriously injured by a drunk driver in the Tampa Bay area contact a personal injury lawyer at Fernandez & Hernandez to schedule a free consultation.

Fernandez & Hernandez is a well-known personal injury law firm located in Tampa, Florida which represents clients in all types of accident, injury, and wrongful death claims.  We give each client the attention and guidance needed to obtain the compensation they deserve.  Our Tampa Bay personal injury lawyers help clients in all phases of injury and wrongful death claims from initial investigation through trial and appellate proceedings.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

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Elegibilidad para Beneficios Médicos Bajo la Nueva Ley de Protección contra Lesiones Personales (PIP)

Elegibilidad para Beneficios Médicos Bajo la Nueva Ley de Protección contra Lesiones Personales (PIP)

– por su Abogado de Lesiones Personales en Tampa, Martin J. Hernandez

Abogado de Lesiones Personales del Área de Tampa Bay

Beneficios médicos de PIP según la nueva ley: dentro de los 14 días posteriores al accidente automovilístico

Los accidentes automovilísticos son algunos de los peores accidentes imaginables. Con demasiada frecuencia, las víctimas de accidentes automovilísticos se quedan con lesiones catastróficas o incluso lesiones fatales. Las familias de los heridos o muertos en accidentes de vehículos en el área de Tampa Bay y en toda Florida quedan con vidas que cambiarán para siempre.

Los abogados de accidentes automovilísticos y los abogados de muerte por negligencia de Fernandez & Hernandez saben qué hacer para ayudarlo a usted y a su familia después de cualquier tipo de accidente automovilístico.

Florida Personal Injury Lawyer in Tampa, FLPara ser elegible para recibir los beneficios médicos de PIP conforme a la nueva ley, las personas lesionadas en un accidente automovilístico deben buscar los servicios iniciales y la atención de proveedores específicos dentro de los Catorce días posteriores al accidente automovilístico. Ver § 627.736 (1) (a), Estatutos de la Florida. Los beneficios médicos de hasta $ 10,000 están disponibles para “afecciones médicas de emergencia” diagnosticadas por proveedores específicos, y hasta $ 2,500 para afecciones médicas que no sean de emergencia. Ver § 627.736 (1) (a), Florida. Estatutos.

Beneficios requeridos: una póliza de seguro debe brindar protección contra lesiones personales al asegurado nombrado, a los familiares que residen en el mismo hogar, a las personas que operan el vehículo de motor asegurado, a los pasajeros en el vehículo de motor y otras personas golpeadas por el vehículo motorizado y que sufren lesiones corporales. un ocupante de un vehículo autopropulsado, hasta un límite de $ 10,000 en beneficios médicos y por discapacidad y $ 5,000 en beneficios por muerte resultantes de lesiones corporales, enfermedad, enfermedad o muerte que surjan de la propiedad, el mantenimiento o el uso de un vehículo de motor.

Beneficios médicos: el ochenta por ciento de todos los gastos razonables por servicios médicos, quirúrgicos, de rayos X, dentales y de rehabilitación médicamente necesarios, incluidos dispositivos protésicos y servicios de ambulancia, hospital y enfermería médicamente necesarios si el individuo recibe los servicios y la atención inicial en 14 días después del accidente automovilístico.

¿Qué debe hacer si está involucrado en un accidente automovilístico?

Estar involucrado en un accidente automovilístico es a menudo un evento traumático que altera la vida. Lo que haces, y lo que no haces inmediatamente después del accidente y más tarde puede influir significativamente en cómo el accidente te afectará. A continuación se incluyen algunas medidas que le recomendamos que tome:

  1. Permanece tranquilo y no abandones la escena del accidente.
  2. Aléjese de cualquier peligro, incluido el tráfico entrante, los derrames de gasolina y los postes dañados.
  3. Busque a cualquier persona lesionada, incluyéndose a usted y a otras personas involucradas en el accidente. Llame al 911 inmediatamente si alguien está herido.
  4. Presente un informe policial.
  5. Reúna toda la información que pueda, incluyendo información de contacto y seguro de todos los involucrados.
  6. Toma fotos y dibuja un diagrama del accidente.
  7. Intente obtener información de contacto de cualquier testigo del accidente.
  8. Mantenga un registro de sus daños (facturas médicas, pérdida de salarios, etc.)
  9. No admita culpa a nadie.
  10. Póngase en contacto con un abogado de lesiones personales que tenga experiencia en accidentes de remolques de vehículos motorizados en Florida y que pueda proporcionarle representación legal de alta calidad y ayudarle a obtener la compensación que merece.

Si se lesiona o lastima de alguna manera, debe recibir los servicios iniciales y la atención dentro de los 14 días posteriores al accidente del vehículo motorizado o puede perder su derecho a recibir un beneficio médico.

¿Cómo puede ayudar un abogado de lesiones personales?

El tratamiento de lesiones sostenidas puede ser costoso, doloroso y puede llevar meses o incluso años. Nuestros abogados con experiencia en Accidentes de Auto en Tampa pueden buscar agresivamente la compensación financiera que se merece por su dolor y sufrimiento y por cubrir los gastos de su tratamiento médico y la atención necesaria, pero solo si recibe servicios iniciales y atención dentro de los 14 días posteriores al accidente automovilístico. El abogado de accidentes automovilísticos Martín J. Hernández puede guiarlo en el proceso.

Desea un abogado con experiencia en accidentes automovilísticos de Florida que entienda la ley. Entendemos el requisito de que reciba servicios iniciales y atención dentro de los 14 días posteriores al accidente automovilístico. Póngase en contacto con un abogado con experiencia en accidentes automovilísticos de Tampa de Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

Si ha estado involucrado en un accidente automovilístico en el área de Tampa Bay, llame al abogado de lesiones personales de Tampa, Martín J. Hernández, de Fernández & Hernández para una consulta gratuita ahora.

Llame al Abogado de Lesiones Personales de Tampa, Martin J. Hernandez de Fernandez & Hernandez al 813-229-5353 o lea más en: GetLawyeredUpNow.com

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Eligibility for Medical Benefits Under the New Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Law

Eligibility for Medical Benefits Under the New Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Law

by Your Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez

Tampa Bay Area Personal Injury Lawyer

PIP Medical Benefits Under the New Law – within 14 days after the motor vehicle accident

Auto Accidents are some of the worst accidents imaginable. All too often, the victims of Auto Accidents are left with catastrophic injuries or even fatal injuries. The families of those injured or killed in vehicle accidents in the Tampa Bay area and throughout Florida are left with lives that will be changed forever.

Florida Personal Injury Lawyer in Tampa, FLThe Auto Accident lawyers and wrongful death attorneys at the Fernandez & Hernandez know what to do to help you and your family following any kind of motor vehicle accident.

To be eligible for PIP medical benefits under the new law, persons injured in a motor vehicle accident must seek initial services and care from specified providers within Fourteen Days after the motor vehicle accident. See § 627.736(1)(a), Florida Statutes.  Medical benefits up to $10,000 are available for “emergency medical conditions” diagnosed by specified providers, and up to $2,500 for non-emergency medical conditions. See § 627.736(1)(a), Florida. Statutes.

Required benefits – An insurance policy must provide personal injury protection to the named insured, relatives residing in the same household, persons operating the insured motor vehicle, passengers in the motor vehicle, and other persons struck by the motor vehicle and suffering bodily injury while not an occupant of a self-propelled vehicle, to a limit of $10,000 in medical and disability benefits and $5,000 in death benefits resulting from bodily injury, sickness, disease, or death arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle.

Medical benefits – Eighty percent of all reasonable expenses for medically necessary medical, surgical, X-ray, dental, and rehabilitative services, including prosthetic devices and medically necessary ambulance, hospital, and nursing services if the individual receives initial services and care within 14 days after the motor vehicle accident.

What Should You Do If You Are Involved In A Motor Vehicle Accident?

Being involved in a Motor Vehicle Accident is frequently a traumatic, life altering event. What you do, and what you do not do immediately after the accident and later on can significantly influence how the accident will impact you. Below are some measures we encourage you to take:

  1. Remain calm and do not leave the scene of the accident.
  2. Get away from any danger including incoming traffic, gasoline spills and damaged poles.
  3. Check for any injured person, including yourself and other people involved in the accident. Call 911 immediately if someone is hurt.
  4. File a police report.
  5. Collect as much information as you can, including contact and insurance information from everyone involved.
  6. Take pictures and draw a diagram of the accident.
  7. Try to obtain contact information from any witness of the accident.
  8. Keep track of your damages (medical bills, loss of wages, etc.)
  9. Do not admit fault to anyone.
  10. Contact a personal injury attorney who is experienced in motor vehicle trailer accidents in Florida and who can provide high quality legal representation and help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

If you are injured or hurt in any way you must receive initial services and care within 14 days after the motor vehicle accident or you may lose your right to medical benefit.

How Can a Personal Injury Attorney help?

Treatment of sustained injuries may be costly, painful and may take months, or even years. Our experienced Tampa Auto Accident attorneys can aggressively seek the financial compensation you deserve for your pain and suffering and for covering the expenses of your medical treatment and needed care, but only if you receive initial services and care within 14 days after the motor vehicle accidentAuto Accident attorney Martin J. Hernandez can help guide you through the process.

You want an experienced Florida Auto Accident attorney who understands the law.  We understand the requirement that you receive initial services and care within 14 days after the motor vehicle accident.  Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: GetLawyeredUpNow.com

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What is Florida "No Fault" or "PIP" Insurance?

What is Florida “No Fault” or “PIP” Insurance?

By your Tampa Auto Accident Attorney – Martin Hernandez

When it comes to auto insurance, Florida is a “No-Fault” insurance state.  This is an often misunderstood topic and what other people tell you it is, like most legal concepts, is usually wrong.

Florida PIP Laws - Know the law and Florida PIPDrivers who are injured in a car accident in Florida and sometimes wonder why they are filing a “No-Fault” Claim under their own insurance policy when they are not at-fault.  Those drivers incorrectly believe that because the other party is at-fault they should be paying all of the injured party’s medical bills.  However, that is not the case.  Why?  Let’s change the facts around.  What if both parties are blaming each other for the accident?  For example, they both say that they had the green light.  Yet, the injured party went to the hospital and incurred $5,000 in hospital bills (cheap for a Tampa hospital after a car accident).  What if they missed two weeks of work ($2,000 in lost wages)?  That means that the injured party is in the hole $7,000 for an accident that may not be their fault.  The hospital is going to ask for payment from you because you are the patient and you are responsible for payment.

Hence, Florida No-Fault.  You pay yours.  I’ll pay mine.  We’ll figure out later on who is responsible.

Now, under Florida law, every motorist is required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage.  A driver’s PIP coverage, as this type of insurance is most often known, is to cover medical bills and lost wages the driver may suffer in an accident, no matter who caused the accident. When a crash occurs, each person involved in the crash turns to his or her own insurance company to pay the costs of medical care and other losses.

Car Accidents under Florida’s No Fault Insurance Scheme What many drivers do not realize is that, under Florida’s no fault statute, their PIP coverage by law only covers 80% of the medical bills which they may incur in an accident as well as only 60% of lost wages or income they may suffer in a car accident.  For example on how this works, assume you have a $10,000 PIP policy with a $1,000 deductible, the absolute minimum required under Florida law.  You are hit by another driver in an accident in which the other driver is clearly at fault.  Assume you go to the emergency room and your medical bills are $5,000 plus you are out of work for two weeks and lose out on $2,000 in income.  Your car insurance will pay $4,000 to the hospital (leaving you a $1,000 co-pay) and pay you $1,200 of your lost wages.  This way your bills are getting paid and you are not being sent to collections for the entire hospital bill.

But I shouldn’t pay the rest! Shouldn’t they pay for everything else?

Yes, they should and that’s how we can help.  There are exceptions to Florida’s “No- Fault” law that permit a motorist to directly sue another motorist who caused the accident.  The first exception to Florida’s no fault statute is if a person suffers a permanent injury as a result of the accident, Florida  statute (627.737(2)) defines a permanent injury as: (i) significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function; (ii) permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement; (iii) significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement; or (iv) death.  Accordingly, if a driver suffers a “permanent injury” as defined above, then he is not subject to the “No-Fault” limitation against the at fault driver and may be able to bring a claim not only for medical bills and lost wages but also to recover for pain and suffering and other “intangible” damages suffered as a result of the accident. Another exception would be if the injuries suffered  are not permanent, but the medical bills (or lost wages) total more than the $10,000 in PIP coverage.  In that instance, a claim can be brought to recover the medical bills (or lost wages) not covered by the PIP insurance.

Obviously, even though Florida is a “No-Fault” state, the application of the law is limited since it only applies to those accidents in which the medical bills and/or lost wages or lost income do not exceed $10,000 and where someone has not suffered a permanent injury.

If you have been injured in a Tampa Car Accident and need a Tampa Injury Attorney, Get Lawyered Up Now and call Tampa Injury Attorney Martin Hernandez of Fernandez and Hernandez, LLC for a free consultation at 813-229-5353 or read more at: InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

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