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What to Do After an Automobile Accident in Florida: A Comprehensive Guide

women in car injured due to automobile accident

Automobile accidents can be distressing and disorienting experiences. Whether it’s a minor fender-bender or a more serious collision, knowing what to do in the immediate aftermath is crucial for your safety and to protect your legal rights, especially in a state like Florida with its unique laws and regulations. Here’s a step-by-step guide on what to do if you find yourself involved in an automobile accident in Florida :

1. Check for Injuries:

The first priority is always safety. Check yourself and others involved in the accident for injuries. If anyone is injured, immediately call 911 for medical assistance.

2. Move to Safety:

If the accident is minor and there are no injuries, move your vehicle to a safe location to avoid blocking traffic and further accidents. Turn on your hazard lights to alert other drivers. If there is an issue regarding who is at fault for the accident, leave the vehicles in their final resting positions until the police arrive and instruct you to move your vehicle. During this time, it is also crucial to take photographs of not only the property damage sustained to the vehicles, but also the resting positions of the vehicles, any skid marks that might have been made due to the crash or just prior to the crash, street lighting, construction zones, traffic control devices, debris fields, and any other evidence which could have contributed to the crash.

3.Call Law Enforcement:

In Florida, you are required to report any accident that involves injuries, death, or property damage exceeding $500. Call the police to the scene so they can document the accident and create an official report.

4.Exchange Information:

Exchange information with the other drivers involved in the accident. Obtain their names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance information, and license plate numbers. Be polite and cooperative, but avoid discussing fault or assigning blame.

5.Notify Your Insurance Company:

Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Provide them with the details of the accident and any documentation you have collected. Be honest and accurate in your statements, but DON’T provide a recorded statement until you have spoken to an attorney.

6.Seek Medical Attention:

Even if you feel fine, it’s important to seek medical attention after an accident. Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal bleeding, may not be immediately apparent. Keep records of all medical treatment and expenses related to the accident.

7.Follow Up:

Follow up with your insurance company and healthcare providers to ensure that your claims are processed smoothly and that you receive the necessary treatment for any injuries sustained in the accident.

8.Consider Legal Assistance:

Depending on the circumstances of the accident, you may want to consult with a personal injury attorney to understand your rights and options. They can help you navigate the legal process and pursue compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. A call to Hicks & Motto can alleviate the stress and frustration associated with an accident, as we take care of everything, while you get better.

9. Be Mindful of Time Limits:

In Florida, there are strict time limits, known as statutes of limitations, for filing personal injury claims. Be aware of these deadlines and take action promptly to protect your legal rights. Any car accident that occurred after March 24, 2023 now only has a two (2) year statute of limitations to file the lawsuit. Failure to file the lawsuit within the two year statute of limitations could bar your claim forever, no matter how meritorious.

10. Stay Calm and Patient:

Dealing with the aftermath of an automobile accident can be stressful and overwhelming. Take care of yourself emotionally and seek support from friends, family, or a professional if needed.

By following these steps, you can ensure that you handle the aftermath of an automobile accident in Florida in a safe and responsible manner. Remember, safety and medical treatment always come first, followed by the proper documentation and reporting of the accident to protect your legal rights and call Hicks & Motto at 561-683-2300 to help facilitate the insurance claims process and get the money you deserve.

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