Florida is a no-fault state when it comes to car insurance, which means per F.S. 627.736, motorists have access to $10,000 in medical and wage loss benefits from their own insurer – regardless of who is at fault. It also means they cannot sue the at-fault driver for further damages unless they have a broken bone, have lost the use of an important body function, suffered a permanent disability or scarring. Wrongful death claims also may be pursued outside of no-fault laws.
Lawmakers in Florida are working to change this. HB19, sponsored by a South Florida Republican and slated for consideration during the 2018 session, would repeal Florida’s Personal Injury Protection law that was first enacted in the early 1970s. The law would scrap PIP coverage and replace it with bodily injury liability coverage. Most states require bodily injury liability coverage (which covers others’ injuries if you’re at-fault in a crash). While most insured drivers in Florida have it, it’s not technically required. The state’s Financial Responsibility Law does mandate drivers be responsible for a minimum of $20,000 in damages to others if they’re at-fault in a crash, so most motorists opt to purchase it so they can avoid personal liability.
A House panel recently voted 18-7 to propel the measure forward to the House Floor when the new session starts in January. Continue reading