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Understanding Florida Personal Injury Laws

David Lee Sellers, PA Feb. 9, 2022

Personal Injury Law concept Written on a Book and stethoscopeSustaining an injury is an overwhelming and stressful process. Fortunately, Florida personal injury laws exist to allow injured individuals to pursue compensation for their damages and losses. However, not everyone understands personal injury law in Florida.

If you or a loved one has been injured, you must speak with a personal injury attorney to explain the legal process and advise you of legal remedies under the state’s personal injury law. The experienced and compassionate personal injury attorney David Lee Sellers can help injured victims and families throughout Florida, including Pensacola, Milton, Crestview, and Fort Walton Beach.

What Is Personal Injury in Florida?

The term “personal injury” refers to physical damage caused to an individual due to someone else’s negligent, careless, reckless, or wrongful conduct. Under personal injury laws in Florida, an injured person can seek compensation for their injuries and damages through an insurance claim and hold the at-fault party accountable for their negligence by filing a lawsuit.

Common examples of personal injury claims in Florida include:

  • Motor vehicle accidents, including car accidents

  • Slip and fall accidents

  • Medical malpractice

  • Workplace accidents

  • Product liability

  • Injuries caused by violence, including assault

Personal injury is used in civil cases involving injuries sustained by accident victims. The term “bodily injury,” on the other hand, is used in criminal cases involving injuries suffered by victims as a result of the perpetrator committing a criminal offense.

Florida Laws Addressing Personal Injury

When seeking compensation for your injuries through a personal injury claim, you need to understand Florida laws addressing personal injury. In particular, three laws affect your ability to obtain compensation for a personal injury:

  1. No-fault Insurance. Florida follows a no-fault insurance law, which affects seeking compensation after motor vehicle accidents. Under the no-fault insurance law, the driver’s insurance company pays for their medical bills and certain other economic damages, regardless of fault. However, certain circumstances may warrant bringing a claim directly against the at-fault party.

  2. Pure Comparative Negligence. While many other states follow the modified comparative negligence law, Florida does not. Florida adopted the pure comparative negligence rule, which means injured victims can be held responsible for the accident if they were partially at fault. Under the law, the injured party’s damages are reduced in proportion to their degree of fault.

  3. Statute of Limitations. The statute of limitations refers to the time during which the injured party can bring a personal injury lawsuit. In Florida, the time limit differs depending on the type of personal injury case. Typically, the victim has two to four years to bring a lawsuit.

Florida’s Personal Injury Claims Process

Usually, the personal injury claims process in Florida begins with the injured victim filing an insurance claim. Since Florida is a no-fault insurance state, the process of obtaining compensation is more straightforward as long as the victim has insurance.

However, filing an insurance claim may not bring the desired amount of compensation. In that case, an experienced personal injury lawyer may advise you to file a lawsuit to recover the compensation to which you are entitled. Personal injury lawsuits and trials can be time-consuming, costly, and unpredictable, which is why you need to weigh all of your options before suing the at-fault party.

Damages That May Be Recovered in a Personal Injury Case

Florida law allows people who suffered a personal injury to pursue economic and non-economic damages. These damages are commonly called “compensatory damages” and are meant to compensate the injured victim for their monetary and non-monetary losses and expenses. Recoverable damages may include:

  • Past and future medical expenses

  • Diminished earning capacity

  • The loss of income and other employment benefits

  • Emotional distress

  • Property damage

  • Pain and suffering

  • Loss of enjoyment of life

The damages that you could recover in your personal injury case in Florida depend on the severity of your injuries, the facts of your accident, whether you were partially at fault for your injury, and other factors. Consider seeking legal counsel from an experienced personal injury attorney in Florida to evaluate your damages and determine how much compensation you should receive.

Hiring a Knowledgeable Florida Attorney

The reliable and experienced personal injury attorney at David Lee Sellers, PA, can help victims in Pensacola, Florida, and other parts of the state seek the compensation they need to get back on their feet and move forward with their lives. Get a case review with Mr. Sellers to discuss your personal injury case. He also serves clients in Milton, Crestview, and Fort Walton Beach, Florida.