10-Year-Old Coral Springs Boy Seriously Injured In Hit-And-Run Accident
On July 25, a 10-year-old Coral Springs boy was the victim of a hit-and-run accident. According to Coral Springs Talk, the boy was riding his bicycle around 8:40 p.m. on the 8400 block of Northwest 40th Street when an unknown driver struck him. Coral Springs police said the child “survived the crash” but still incurred “significant injuries” that required airlifting him to the hospital.
Hit-and-run accidents are often frustrating for victims. After all, it is difficult to hold a negligent driver accountable when they flee the scene. In many cases, the hit-and-run driver is never identified by the police. So where does that leave the victim in terms of seeking compensation for their injuries?
How Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Law Protects You Following a Hit-and-Run
Florida’s “no-fault” car insurance system actually helps hit-and-run victims to some degree. If you own a car in Florida, you probably know how the law works. You are required to carry at least $10,000.00 in personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. In the event of an accident, your insurer is then responsible for paying 80% of the first $10,000.00 of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages up to the limit of your policy–without regard for who caused the accident.
PIP coverage also applies to a policyholder’s children or other members of their household. So in the case of a child injured in a hit-and-run accident, they will be covered by a parent’s PIP policy even if the child was not actually riding in an insured vehicle at the time.
Stepping Outside the No-Fault System
Unfortunately, PIP benefits do not include compensation for “pain and suffering” or other intangible losses. Such damages are only available if your injuries meet a certain threshold. In cases of “serious injury,” such as disfigurement or permanent limitation or loss of a body part, an accident victim can “step outside” of the no-fault system and pursue a personal injury claim against the responsible parties.
But again, how does that work in a hit-and-run accident when the negligent party cannot be found? Or what if the driver is found and lacks sufficient insurance to fully compensate you? (Keep in mind, Florida currently does not require drivers to carry bodily injury liability coverage.) In either of these scenarios, your own insurance company may once again be required to help you.
Florida requires all auto insurers to offer uninsured motorist (UM) coverage as part of their standard policies. The limits of a UM policy must be at least as the minimum PIP coverage. If you have purchased UM coverage, then your own insurer takes the place of the hit-and-run driver for purposes of a personal injury claim. Your UM coverage will pay for your past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages and past and future pain and suffering
Speak with a Broward County Personal Injury Attorney Today
Many hit-and-run accident victims are unsure of their legal rights. An experienced Coral Springs bicycle accident lawyer can provide you with skilled legal advice and representation. Contact Lyons & Snyder today to schedule a free consultation.