Florida is one of the few states that does not require drivers to carry liability insurance that would force at-fault drivers to pay for serious injuries or death. Instead, Florida is currently a no-fault state. This means that a driver must carry a type of insurance called personal injury protection. They must turn to this insurance coverage first when they are injured in an accident. If their injuries exceed that coverage, they may then sue the other driver’s insurance company to pay for the excessive damages. However, as WFTV reports, many Florida drivers do not even have the insurance coverage to pay for those damages.
Efforts to require Florida drivers to carry “at-fault” insurance are still in limbo even as the legislative session wraps up.
Even if the legislation passes, about 1 in 4 drivers on Florida roadways do not have insurance. A local mother found out the hard way.
On New Year’s Eve, Suzanne Ferrara was in an accident near Waterford Lakes that caused injuries to her spine. She was unable to move or feel her legs following the accident.
The other driver, a 20-year-old, ran a stop sign, hitting the vehicle that Ferrara was in with her son. To make things worse, Ferrara discovered that the other driver had no insurance.
It is estimated that about ¼ of all drivers in Florida have no insurance, making it one of the highest rates of uninsured motorists in the country. Statistics show that only about 40% of Florida drivers may have the mandatory coverage, but do not have liability coverage.
The proposed legislation has a history of failure, but it would only require that drivers carry a minimum of $25,000 of insurance.