A serious motorcycle crash can often result in severe injuries, expensive medical expenses and lost income from missing work. Many riders assume that their automobile’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) will cover the damages. However, this is not the case in Florida.
Unless you specifically purchased motorcycle PIP coverage, you may need to pay for the damages out of your own pocket or file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. Having a licensed lawyer on your side to help you, could make a significant difference in the outcome of your settlement. Injury victims who hire legal representation usually garner larger settlement amounts, as opposed to individuals who decide to handle the case on their own.
If you or someone you know was hurt in a motorcycle accident, contact an accomplished attorney from the law office of Frankl & Kominsky today. We offer free initial evaluation and there is no obligation to move forward with our firm. Your information is kept completely confidential, so there is no risk in discussing your case with one of our award-winning attorneys.
Read on to learn more about how the no-fault law works in Florida and how the rules differ for motorcyclists. Learning these differences could help you avoid a difficult financial situation for you and your family.
Does the No-Fault Law Apply to Motorcyclists?
Although Florida is one of the few states considered to be a no-fault state (which means that all four-wheeled motor vehicles are required to carry PIP coverage), these laws do not apply to motorcycles. No-fault means you must use your own PIP coverage to pay for your damages if you are in a collision while driving a car or other four-wheeled motor vehicle. The reason for this is to reduce the amount of accident lawsuits in Florida.
Since motorcyclists are not required to carry PIP coverage, many riders are caught off-guard when they find out that their automobile coverage does not cover the damages. You may need to hire a lawyer and file a lawsuit against the at-fault party, and there is no guarantee you will recover the full amount of compensation you need for a healthy recovery.
At the law firm of Frankl & Kominsky, our experienced attorneys know how to apply local and state traffic laws and past cases to help you receive the compensation you deserve from negligent parties that are liable for your damages.
Insurance Coverage for Motorcyclists
Although Florida does not require motorcyclists to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or Bodily Injury (BI) insurance, having enough coverage is crucial for all motorcyclists. Underinsured or Uninsured (UM) coverage is highly recommended for all drivers of any vehicle or motorcycle, in case the at-fault party is uninsured or he or she does not have enough coverage to pay for your damages. A large portion of drivers continue to drive with little to no coverage in Florida.
These types of coverage are available from most insurers, however, they are totally optional. We recommend purchasing as much UM coverage as you can reasonably afford.
While some personal injury victims may think having health insurance will cover medical costs associated with an accident, many insurers do not provide coverage for motorcycle crashes. Some insurance policies may have a stipulation that excludes coverage for certain dangerous activities such as riding a motorcycle, ATV, or jet ski. It is extremely important to read the fine print of your insurance policy to ensure you will be covered in the event of a crash.
While you may see many motorcyclists in Florida go helmet-less, riders over the age of 21 are required to carry at least $10,000 in medical coverage if they choose not to wear a helmet. Although you may think wearing a helmet may not be necessary, we recommend all riders do so. Not wearing a proper motorcycle helmet greatly increases the chances for a catastrophic injury and even death. Victims are often left with debilitating long-term injuries and hefty medical expenses.
How is Fault Determined?
Determining fault in a motorcycle crash case can be complicated without the help of a knowledgeable attorney who has experience working with cases like yours. As the plaintiff, you and your attorney must prove the other party’s negligence led to your injuries.
If your claim has merit, your attorney can perform a thorough investigation, gather evidence, and interview witnesses to build a strong case in your favor. The attorney can properly negotiate with insurers to pursue the full amount of compensation you deserve to cover medical bills, lost wages from missing work, property damage, loss of consortium, and more. Even if you were partially at-fault for the crash, you still may be able to seek partial compensation under Florida’s comparative fault statute.
Not having a reputable lawyer on your side means your claim may be denied or devalued by the insurance company. If your claim qualifies for legal compensation, a dedicated lawyer from our firm can communicate with insurers on your behalf to help you seek the proper funds needed for a healthy recovery.
Seek Legal Advice to Protect Your Rights
Serious motorcycle accidents should be evaluated by a legal professional. It is important to understand all your legal options to pursue the compensation needed to pay for your medical bills, lost wages from missing work, and damages to your bike. Having a lawyer with a proven track record and the experience needed for a personal injury case can be crucial to the outcome of your accident claim.
At the law office of Frankl & Kominsky, our compassionate lawyers understand the physical, emotional, and financial burden a motorcycle accident can have on injury victims and their families. Our goal is to help protect the rights of injured victims in Palm Beach Gardens and throughout the state of Florida (by appointment only).
Give us a call anytime, 24/7, to schedule a free consultation with one of our award-winning attorneys. We offer free no-obligation consultations to discuss your situation and review whether you have a viable claim. At Frankl & Kominsky, we never settle for less when we represent our clients.
Call Frankl & Kominsky at (561) 800-8000 or you can fill out a free online form.