Car accidents are very stressful occurrences, but they can be even more frustrating when you’re in a leased vehicle. There are medical bills to pay, trauma to cope with, and vehicle damages to deal with. It is normal to feel overwhelmed with many questions running through your mind about what to do next.
If you were recently injured in an accident with your leased car, here is everything you need to know about your next steps.
No-Fault Insurance Still Relates to Leased Vehicles
If you drive a leased vehicle in the state of Florida, you’re likely still operating under no-fault insurance. The no-fault rule applies to all drivers in Florida, which means if there’s an accident, all parties share the blame and are to report to their insurance companies for assistance.
Drivers in Florida with owned or leased vehicles are required to carry at least $10,000 in personal injury protection and $10,000 in property damage liability. The personal injury protection does not cover any damages to your vehicle, so it is in your best interest to have collision coverage for those damages. The property damage liability covers damages to the other person’s vehicle.
If a vehicle is registered, which leased vehicles are, they are to carry this type of insurance to assist with any future accidents. While your accident can result in injuries or damages that exceed the $10,000 limit, all hope is not lost. There are still options you have to seek extra compensation while working with a lawyer in the Boca Raton, Florida area.
What To Do If You’re Involved in An Accident with A Leased Vehicle
Being involved in an accident with a leased vehicle can be very daunting. You don’t necessarily “own” the car, so there may be more at stake for you than a normal car accident. Here is everything you need to know to help you in the future if you find yourself in such a situation:
Call The Police
Filing a police report can help with evidence later on if you were to step out of the no-fault system. Police reports are objective and factual, which means there will be groundwork to display what led up to the accident, how it occurred, and whose fault it was. If you are not severely injured, call the police right away.
It is in your best interest to take photos of the crash and damages of your car to serve as more evidence your lawyer can use later in your case. Things you can document include car damages and any physical injuries to demonstrate how bad the accident was, especially if it wasn’t your fault.
Talk To a Lawyer
Even before you speak to the insurance adjuster, it is best to consult with a Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer. Lawyers know how to investigate what happened and help you seek extra compensation when needed by communicating and negotiating with insurance companies on your behalf. In addition, because your car is leased, there will be more people involved in your case, such as the other driver, your insurance company, and the company you leased your car with.
Hiring a trustworthy lawyer that can guide you in your case can help you save money and headaches while also avoiding additional legal trouble. Accidents involving leased vehicles are tricky to handle, and no one understands tough situations as these better than a personal injury lawyer.
Stepping Out of The No-Fault System
While it is important to note that if your car is leased, and you will have to pay your lease at some point, there are ways for you to step out of the no-fault system to help seek extra compensation.
In Florida, there are two acceptable ways a driver can file a third-party claim against the other driver in a car accident:
- If you have sustained a severe injury
- If your injuries exceed $10,000
The severe injuries that could constitute stepping out of the no-fault system are:
- Dismemberment or loss of function
- Ongoing medical care
- Severe impact on quality of life
When you decide to step out of the no-fault system and file a third-party claim, you will be awarded extra compensation based on your pain and suffering. The money that you receive may go towards your medical bills or assist you financially in paying your car lease.
If you think your situation can involve you stepping out of the no-fault system, speaking to a lawyer can help guide you in the decision-making process. Your lawyer will advise you on which route to take and how they can best assist you.
Before you select a lawyer to work with, it’s important that you sit down with them during a few consultations to hear how they can help you and learn more about their firm. It’s highly recommended that you consult with a few law firms before making the selection so that you can find the one that you believe will help your case the most.
Seek Extra Compensation For Your Injuries
When dealing with a car lease company, things can get dicey, especially if they try to hold you financially responsible for the damages. In this case, it’s best to hire a Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer to help you navigate the situation.
Your lawyer can thoroughly review your car lease and look at your situation to find ways to reduce the responsibility on your end if you were not at fault. They can also help you seek extra compensation out of your insurance settlement or help you file a third-party claim.
Florida’s statute of limitations states that residents have a four-year deadline to report their wreck and file any claims, but it is recommended to start as soon as you can, especially if you believe you will need a legal expert.
When you hire a lawyer, they will take over responsibilities in the case by gathering all evidence and medical records, as well as communicating on your behalf to the insurer or defendant’s lawyer. In addition, if your case requires communication with your leasing company, it will be your attorney’s duty to speak with them as well.
Hiring a lawyer may seem like an expensive investment, but it is worth it to avoid any sticky situations.
Talk To a Lawyer Today
If you are looking to seek extra compensation or want to know more about your legal rights, speak to a trusted Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer today. Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers has over 40 years of experience handling cases such as these (by appointment only).
As your lawyer, we understand the stress an accident can bring to your life, which is why we work hard to find the best solution possible. We are highly awarded and acclaimed for our expert knowledge in legal tactics.
With our four decades in the business, we know what to expect out of the other side. If you’re ready to work with legal professionals who can help you seek extra compensation, call us at (561) 800-8000 or fill out our online case evaluation form.
We look forward to hearing from you and helping you fight for your rights.