Motor Vehicle Accidents
Motor vehicle accidents are a problem on Florida roads that just won’t go away. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic when businesses were shut down across the state, there were still 341,399 crashes in Florida in 2020, according to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) Traffic Crash Facts Annual Report 2020. Those accidents caused 3,332 fatalities and 196,818 injuries, including 15,614 incapacitating injuries. Miami-Dade and Broward saw more accidents than any other counties, where there were a combined 85,593 crashes resulting in 43,212 injuries and 582 deaths. Palm Beach County had the fifth-highest accident rate of all Florida counties, where 22,106 accidents caused 12,832 injuries and 185 fatalities.
Motor vehicle accident victims can get financial assistance to help out with their medical expenses and loss of income due to the crash, but recoveries are limited in most cases. For those with serious injuries, Sarah Steinbaum PA can help you pursue a claim against the other driver and their insurance to recover the full amount of damages you are being forced to incur. Learn more about car accidents and other motor vehicle accident claims in Florida below, and call our office for a free consultation if you or a loved one were injured in a crash in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, or anywhere in South Florida or statewide.
Florida Auto Accident Insurance Law
To discourage lawsuits and protect insurance companies from high payouts, Florida adopted a system of no-fault insurance. Under this scheme, if you get into a wreck, your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage will pay you benefits regardless of who was at fault in causing the accident. PIP covers 80% of your medical expenses and 60% of your lost wages, up to $10,000 in total. You must seek medical treatment within 14 days to get coverage, and unless a doctor certifies that you had an emergency medical condition, your PIP benefits will be capped at $2,500.
If your injuries were serious, Florida law allows you to step outside of the no-fault system and pursue a civil claim against the other driver. If successful, you could recover the full amount of your medical expenses and lost wages, plus other damages such as pain and suffering. To get this compensation, you’ll have to prove the other driver was at-fault in causing the accident through their negligence, such as speeding, drunk or distracted driving, following too close or failing to yield, etc. The insurance company might dispute your claim or undervalue it, so it’s important to have an attorney represent you to make sure your claim is successful and that you get all the damages you are entitled to.
A civil tort claim is only available if you or your family member suffered one of the following:
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability
With experience as a medical assistant, insurance defense lawyer, and over 20 years in practice representing car crash injury victims, attorney Sarah Steinbaum understands both the medical and legal aspects of these critical terms. She can determine whether you suffered a serious injury as defined in Florida law and help you get the maximum amount of compensation available.
Sarah Steinbaum PA helps motor vehicle accident victims who got into a wreck with an 18-wheeler or other large truck. These devastating crashes often have a catastrophic or deadly impact on accident victims who are driving cars that are outweighed by the semis by 20 times or more. Tractor-trailers crash because their fatigued drivers violated hours of service regulations, the trucking companies failed to maintain their vehicles in good working order, or because third parties such as freight shippers negligently loaded the trailers. Sarah Steinbaum PA can work through the complex dynamics of a big rig accident, determine fault, and gather the evidence necessary to hold all responsible parties fully accountable for the damage they have caused.
Motorcyclists can’t get PIP coverage in Florida, meaning their only option for financial help is to file a claim or lawsuit against the negligent driver and prove the driver’s liability in causing the crash. Motorcycle riders are extremely vulnerable to catastrophic injury or wrongful death in a motor vehicle crash, making it essential for victims and families to get experienced legal representation for maximum value on their claims.
Major commercial airline disasters are thankfully few and far between, but smaller, private planes crash every day. In addition, aviation accidents can involve many non-collision injuries like a slip and fall or trip and fall in aisles or on ramps, getting hit by falling overhead objects or struck by rolling carts, burns from hot liquid spills, and more. Aviation accident victims must deal with complex federal laws and regulations and government agencies such as the FAA and NTSB. Sarah Steinbaum PA provides dogged assistance in uncovering the cause of the crash and holding responsible parties liable for accidents caused by pilot error, mechanical failure, negligent maintenance and inspection, design and manufacturing defects, and other reasons.
Florida is a boater’s paradise, and its lakes and rivers and open seas are popular destinations for tourists and residents alike, many of whom have never operated a motorized vessel before. There is no boating license in Florida; operators born since 1988 only need to take an online safety course to get an ID card, or they can operate a boat with no training at all so long as they are accompanied by a person with an ID card. Additionally, boating is most often a recreational activity, increasing the likelihood of careless or reckless behaviors, including drinking and boating. Sarah Steinbaum PA represents boating accident victims injured in collisions with other boats or fixed objects, falls overboard, fires, capsizes, and injuries involving personal watercraft (PWC) like Jet Skis.
Contact Sarah Steinbaum PA Today
As a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), attorney Sarah Steinbaum has demonstrated the skill and experience necessary to litigate a motor vehicle accident to a successful conclusion and recover the full amount of damages for her clients. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a motor vehicle accident in Miami, Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, or anywhere in South Florida or statewide, call Sarah Steinbaum PA for a free consultation and immediate assistance.