What does “No-Fault State” Mean for Car Accidents and Why Does It Matter?May 22, 2021
Q&A with Brandy Varner Florida Registered Paralegal for Hancock LawJuly 16, 2021
Being in a car accident can be scary enough; being in an out of state car accident, out of your comfort zone, can be even scarier. This type of scenario is rare, but not uncommon. At Hancock Law, we handle several cases every year where one of our Florida clients is involved in an accident in another state while on vacation or business.
When it comes to out-of-state accidents, it’s important to know that different states have different laws on different issues. This can get tricky. Here are some things that your personal injury attorney will need to know about the state in which your out-of-state car accident happened:
- Their mandatory coverages
- Their statute of limitations
- Differences in their negligence laws
- The mandatory coverages in the state of residence of the offender (if different from the state where the accident occurred)
Having multiple states’ laws at play can get confusing. For example, Florida is a no-fault state that requires all insureds to have personal injury protection coverage (also known as “PIP”). Most other states do NOT require PIP coverage but instead require insureds to purchase a minimum amount of bodily injury liability coverage. There are also differences in how state laws apply to uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, damage offsets, reimbursement for health insurance liens from a settlement….the list goes on. We understand that this list may seem daunting, which is why hiring a personal injury attorney — especially for an out-of-state car accident — is a must.
Myth: Your personal injury attorney must be located in the state where your accident happened.
Truth: At the outset, you should hire a personal injury attorney in your state of residence. You need an out-of-state attorney if you plan on filing a lawsuit in the state where the accident happened, but insurance companies usually resolve cases without the need to resort to litigation.
It is best to hire a personal injury attorney in the state where you reside and where you plan on getting your accident-related treatment. Hancock Law handles cases where a client who’s from Florida — generally the Port Charlotte/DeSoto area — was traveling through or to another state and had an accident there. We consult with out-of-state attorneys on an as-needed basis, such as necessary pre-suit investigation and referring out if a lawsuit has to be filed.
No matter where you get into a car accident, one thing doesn’t change: you must seek accident-related medical treatment.
Kenneth and the team at Hancock Law will act as your guard dogs through the entire process, so you can prioritize your health and wellbeing. While you focus on what matters most, your personal injury attorney ensures that all insurance contracts are properly enforced with your interests in mind. This is one of the many reasons you could benefit greatly from having the right personal injury attorney involved in your case.
If you’re from Florida and have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to Kenneth and the team. We wish everyone a fun and safe holiday weekend.
DISCLAIMER: Please note that the information provided in this blog is general in nature and should not be construed as legal advice nor as creating an attorney-client relationship. Every case is different and legal advice cannot be provided by Hancock Law unless/until we meet to discuss the particulars of your case. Whether an attorney-client relationship exists can differ on a case-by-case basis, but at Hancock Law we consider such a relationship to exist only upon a potential client’s request and our agreement to accept that representation.