If you’ve ever been involved in a car accident, you know how scary the experience can be. Making sure everyone involved is not injured, checking the damage to your car, and waiting for help to arrive is just the beginning of the ordeal. If injuries are involved, the financial strain alone can take a major toll on your physical and mental well being. Knowing the laws of your state and understanding what to do following the accident can help ensure you are fairly compensated, or fairly penalized, for the accident.
Fault and No Fault States
One of the most important things to know is whether you live in a fault or no fault state. In many parts of the US, medical expenses are the responsibility of the person who caused the accident. These areas are known as fault states. Factors such as negligence and reckless behavior play into the determination as to who was at fault, and they will become responsible for paying for the medical expenses of the victims of the accident, in addition to their own injuries. No fault states do not expect the guilty party to pay for injuries, rather, each individual’s insurance company is expected to pay for their policy holder’s injury expenses. Florida is an example of a no fault state, so it is imperative to work with a Tampa accident attorney after an accident if you live in that part of the state.
Navigating the Insurance Process
Although Florida law states that insurance companies are expected to pay for medical care regardless of fault, there are still circumstances in which recouping your money can be difficult. They may feel that your medical diagnosis is inflated and therefore order more tests and opinions, thus delaying your care. They may also seek additional written statements around the circumstances of the accident or dispute areas of your claim for a variety of other reasons. These issues are not in your best interest since it prevents you from gaining the medical help you need when you need it, and/or can force you to pay out of pocket, thus straining your finances.
Car accidents are a harrowing ordeal made worse by injuries and legal disputes. Prepare yourself by ensuring you understand your policy and the laws of your state. This, coupled with the help of knowledgeable professionals, can help expedite an otherwise complicated process and ensure everyone is given the treatment they need and compensation they deserve.