In Florida, if someone is hit in a
pedestrian accident, usually they are supposed to turn to their No Fault Personal Injury Coverage
under their own auto insurance policy for medical bills and lost wages.
However, it’s very easy for this coverage to be exhausted after
a stay in the hospital, or after being seriously injured. The next step
is to see if the at-fault driver has coverage to pay for bodily injuries
and property damage. If not, the final step is to turn to the plaintiff’s
own uninsured and underinsured (UM) coverage.
In this post, we explain PIP, BIL and PDL Insurance, and UM coverage and
how they affect pedestrian accidents in Florida.
Personal Injury Protection
Florida law requires all drivers to carry “Personal Injury Protection” or PIP Insurance, which covers policyholders in the
event of an accident, regardless of fault (up to your PIP limits). In
Florida, you’re required to carry a minimum of $10,000 PIP Insurance
on your own policy; however, it may not be enough to cover your damages.
Bodily Injury & Property Damage Liability
In the event of a pedestrian accident where the at-fault driver is insured,
they may have elected to carry Bodily Injury Liability (BIL) Insurance
and Property Damage Liability (PDL) Insurance. BIL Insurance pays for
serious injuries or death experienced by others (the injured parties or
plaintiffs) in a crash, whereas PDL pays for the property damage caused
by the at-fault driver in an accident. If the at-fault driver has this
coverage, it will usually take effect after the plaintiff’s PIP
has been exhausted.
Uninsured and Underinsured (UM) Coverage
Under Florida law, auto insurance companies are required to offer uninsured/underinsured
motorist (UM) coverage. If policyholders don’t want to pay for UM
coverage, they must sign a form stating they reject UM coverage. If a
pedestrian has UM coverage on their own automobile insurance policy and
they’re hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, the plaintiff’s
UM coverage typically kicks in once all other coverage has been fully utilized.
Do I Use My Health Insurance?
Suppose you’re hit by a car while you’re on foot. If you have
health insurance, this is most likely the first place you’ll turn
to pay your medical bills. Usually, the insurance company will turn to
the at-fault driver’s insurance to seek reimbursement for the policyholder’s
medical expenses arising from the accident.
“What if I was working at the time of the crash?” If the pedestrian
accident occurred while you were working, your employer’s workers’
compensation insurance company may be required to compensate you as well
by approving workers’ comp benefits.
To learn more about filing a pedestrian accident claim,
contact the Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb for a
free case evaluation.