Florida Keeps Battling a Serious Uninsured Motorist Problem
Florida has the dubious distinction of being one of America’s five states with the highest number of uninsured motorists. In fact, 25% of this state’s drivers aren’t carrying the auto insurance required by law. While this may not shock every resident, it’s a reality that’s starting to cost many drivers far more money than they can afford to lose. According to a story recently featured on a Fort Lauderdale news station, one driver said, “The people who lose [in all of these accidents] are the insured motorists for the most part.” Police are often given fake or expired insurance cards at the scene of an accident, or some drivers don’t bother carrying an insurance card at all.
Keep in mind Florida law requires ALL drivers to carry both PIP and property damage (PD) coverage. PIP coverage, also known as “No Fault” coverage, only covers medical bills of the policy holder, as well as people that are travelling in the same car, and some individuals that live with the policyholder. PD coverage is designed to cover the property damage of any vehicle that the policy holder causes damage to. Both coverage are usually limited to $10,000 in policy limits. However, as indicated above, many people do not even carry the required minimum coverage.
A Partial Solution May Be on the Horizon
Fake insurance cards are causing major problems for both law enforcement and the Division of Motor Vehicles since it’s very difficult for state employees to spot a fake card. Far too many irresponsible people keep taking advantage of this situation. After purchasing one of these fake insurance cards, they take them to the DMV to register their cars – and then often later wind up hitting unsuspecting, insured motorists who suffer the types of consequences Thomas Collins described above. Fortunately, there’s a solution available. Many states have a computerized database up and running that will allow the Department of Motor Vehicles to verify if a person presenting an insurance card is actually currently covered. The state of New York has such a database and has managed to cut its number of uninsured motorists down to roughly five percent of those on the road. Until this problem is properly addressed and Florida can afford to get its cross-checking database up and running, residents of this state may continue paying “an average of $1,500 a year for [their] auto insurance.”
How Hiring a South Florida Personal Injury Attorney Can Help Minimize Your Losses
As your experienced attorney will tell you, a state statute requires Florida insurance companies to ask all potential policyholders to sign affidavits indicating whether or not they want to purchase UM/UIM (uninsured motorist/underinsured motorist) coverage. When any of these insurance companies fail to obtain these types of signed affidavits, they are obligated to provide policyholders with UM/UIM coverage. An experienced injury/accident attorney can also help locate insurance coverage that may apply to the person that caused the accident, or assets the at fault driver may have in order to recover money on your behalf. Apart from providing you with critical information about how your auto insurance policy is designed to protect you, your South Florida attorney can fully investigate your accident and then effectively negotiate with all necessary parties to recover the full financial damages you’re entitled to receive under the law.
If you’ve suffered a serious car accident injury, contact the Maus Law Firm to learn more about your rights. The Maus Law Firm has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Pompano Beach and the Florida Keys, and handles accident and injury claims throughout Miami-Dade, Monroe, Collier, Lee, Broward and Palm Beach counties. You’ll need the help of an experienced South Florida car accident injury attorney on your side. Call Toll Free today at: (855) 999-LAWS, or locally at (954) 784-6310.