Over 9,500 pedestrian crashes occurred in Florida in 2021, of these 7,332 resulted in injuries and 831 were fatal. If you are a loved one were involved in an auto accident as a pedestrian, what should you expect?
Florida’s No-Fault Law
Florida is one of the few no-fault states in the United States. This means that in the sunshine state, drivers involved in an accident are expected to cover their own damages and losses with their own insurance. Each motorist is, thus, required by law to carry Personal Injury Protection insurance of at least
A motorist may only file a liability claim against the other driver if their damages exceed their coverage and/or they believe that the other driver is at fault for the accident. In such case, Florida’s Comparative Negligence Law shall be put in effect wherein the court investigates and decides how much of the fault should be assigned to each party. The percentage of fault shall then determine how much they will pay the other driver or the victim.
How About Pedestrians?
You may have noticed that these laws pertain to motorists. If you were a pedestrian, what can you expect?
First, let’s clarify who counts as pedestrian. You are considered a pedestrian if you are walking; standing; sitting down; on a trailer; or riding a bicycle, skateboard, roller blades, or scooter.
If you were involved in an auto accident even if you were not driving a motor vehicle, you can expect these laws also apply to you as a pedestrian as well. In fact, if you look back into your PIP policy, you will find that there is a section there that pertains to coverage for when you are injured in an auto accident as a pedestrian.
If you carry PIP, your insurance will pay for your damages even if you were a pedestrian in the auto accident. As long as you were struck by a motor vehicle, even if you were not inside a motor vehicle yourself, your PIP will still kick in.
However, if you don’t carry PIP, for instance if you do not drive at all, then you will likely not have PIP coverage to help you. Don’t lose hope yet. If you are living with a relative who has PIP coverage, their PIP may cover your damages. This will not apply, however, to a pedestrian who has a license in Florida or owns a vehicle but does not have the legally required PIP coverage.
Another way to get compensation if you were hit by a motor vehicle as a pedestrian is to get the driver’s PIP insurance to cover your damages. If this is the case, you will have to submit an affidavit form to the driver’s PIP provider stating that you have been injured by the driver and you do not own a motor vehicle. The driver’s PIP insurance provider should start the process to provide you the appropriate amount to pay for your medical bills.
Can A Pedestrian Get Compensation From The Driver?
Getting compensation from the driver whose vehicle hit you is, of course, possible. This process may be more strenuous and time-consuming and often involves going to court. For this, you will need to file a lawsuit against the driver claiming that they were at-fault for the auto accident that involved you. For this, the assistance of a skilled auto accident lawyer is a must for they will help you compile evidence and build a strong case. The lawsuit may either end with an out-of-court settlement or go to court wherein a jury shall decide who is at-fault and, given Florida’s pure comparative negligence, how much of the fault is to be attributed to those involved.
Were you involved in an auto accident in Parrish, Florida? Contact us today.
Attorney Danny Murphy Serving Manatee County