A single-vehicle accident took place in Miami-Dade County on September
13, 2015 in which all four passengers were hospitalized. This incident
underscores the need for Floridians to be aware of their rights as injured
passengers and the need to carry uninsured motorist (UM) insurance. They
can assert a claim against the bodily injury insurance of the driver of
the vehicle they were in, however it is always safe to purchase
underinsured motorist coverage. To ensure that IF you are in an accident and the defendant has
insufficient coverage or no coverage to compensate for your injuries and
pain and suffering, your own UM/UIM will be there for you.
If you or your passengers are hurt in a single-vehicle accident or an accident
caused by a driver with minimal bodily injury such as a ten thousand dollar
bodily injury policy, those funds would potentially be divided amongst
each party based upon their injuries. Uninsured / Underinsured motorist
coverage can cover loses such as medical expenses, lost wages, future
medical expenses, disability, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment
of life. UM / UIM insurance also protects you for such losses even if
you are not in your own insured vehicle.
While Florida insurance companies must offer you UM insurance, you can
elect to waive your right to this coverage. Those that do almost always
regret this decision when the UM rejection letter has their signature
on it and their chances of recovery are minimal at best.
Those passengers injured in an accident have the right to file injury claims under:
- The injury coverage of the driver of any liable vehicle
- The injury coverage of the owner of any liable vehicle
- The injury coverage of the driver if they were partially liable
- The injury coverage of the owner of the car you were in your driver was
Once you are injured, you can also file a claim under the Personal Injury
Protection coverage (PIP) of your driver or owner’s insurance policy,
which is not based on fault and does not require interactions with insurance
companies as to who was to blame for the accident. This will cover up
to the first ten thousand dollars of your medical expenses, lost wages
and some other potential coverage’s.
Further, most UM policies will offer coverage for those injured in auto
accidents involving a phantom vehicle; that is, one party who leaves the
scene of the accident and is unidentified. You should still be sure to
report any phantom vehicle accident to your insurer as soon as you can.
Speak with the trusted Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys at Rosenberg
& Rosenberg, P.A. to handle the complexities of your accident and recover the damages you
need to cover any losses incurred.