Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney for Fender Benders
If you have been involved in a fender bender and are wondering if it is worth dealing with the insurance companies, there are two separate – and equally important – questions you need to answer: (i) Are you required to report the accident to the police and/or your insurer? (ii) Even if you are not legally required to report the accident, it is still in your best interests to do so? The answers to these questions are not as straightforward as they may seem. As a result, even in the case of a fender bender, there are a number of reasons why it is important to seek advice from an experienced Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney.
When are Drivers Required to Report Car Accidents in Florida?
There are several circumstances under which drivers are required to report car accidents under Florida law. As you can see, several of these circumstances can potentially be relevant even in the case of a fender benders or other “minor” collision:
- The other driver fled the scene of the accident
- The other driver was under the influence of alcohol
- The accident involved a commercial vehicle
- The accident involved personal injury or death
- Any vehicle involved in the accident needed to be towed
Additionally, most auto insurance companies require their policyholders to report all accidents regardless of severity, and this requirement may be written into the terms of your policy. If you fail to timely report an accident and then subsequently file a claim for coverage, your insurance company may try to argue that your failure to timely report the accident justifies a denial of coverage.
When Should Drivers Report Car Accidents Even if Reporting is Not Required by Florida Law?
But, let’s assume that you are not required to report your fender bender under Florida law or the terms of your auto insurance policy (which is not an assumption you should make until you have spoken with a Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney). Should you report the accident anyway?
As we mentioned above, there are a number of reasons why it may be in your best interests to report the accident even if you are not required to do so. For example, potential issues that could come up once you get home following the accident include:
- The other driver claims that the accident never happened
- The other driver claims to be seriously injured and accuses you of being at fault
- You begin to experience pain or other symptoms of a potentially-serious injury
Among all of the various reasons why you may want (or need) to report a car accident, this last reason is in many respects the most important. After a car accident, it is common not to experience symptoms right away, and even “minor” accidents such as fender benders can cause concussions and other serious injuries. If you have been injured, your medical expenses and other costs could quickly get out of hand, and reporting the accident promptly could be critical to recovering just compensation.
Speak With a Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney for Free
For more information about protecting your legal rights after a fender bender in Fort Lauderdale, call Maus Law Firm at 855-999-5297 or contact us online. Your initial consultation is completely risk-free and you pay nothing unless we help you recover your accident-related losses.