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What to Do if You’re Injured in a Car Accident While Visiting Florida from Out of State

With millions of people visiting Florida each year, the state’s roadways frequently become congested and often dangerous. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for those visiting from out of state to become involved in car accidents, which sometimes result in serious injury. Car accidents are always traumatic experiences but can be even more alarming when you’re away from your home state and you or other passengers are injured. If you find yourself in this situation, here are a few important steps to take right away:

  • Call 9-1-1. Even if the accident doesn’t initially appear to be too bad, you will want to have a police report to provide to your insurance company, as well as to support a case in the event that you pursue a lawsuit. Additionally, calling 9-1-1 immediately will ensure that any injured parties get the attention they need. Many times injuries don’t show up right away, plus many people in a state of shock don’t realize they are injured until their adrenaline subsides.
  • Document the scene. Take pictures and videos of the scene, including any injuries, and write down anything you can remember about how the accident occurred. Even video the final rest of any vehicles to show their positions and where they ended up. This can be important later after the vehicles are removed.  You can’t have too much of this data, only too little. Also, photograph the other driver(s) and any identifying information like their drivers license, tag, witnesses or passengers, etc.
  • Talk to witnesses and ask if they’d be willing to share their contact information.
  • Limit discussion with the other parties involved, and never admit fault. The more you talk to the other driver(s), the easier it becomes to inadvertently say something that could potentially be used against you in a lawsuit or by their insurance company—so try to limit the conversation to just the essentials, such as exchanging insurance information.
  • Seek medical attention. Even if you don’t seem to be injured at first, it may take days or even weeks for symptoms to appear. It’s best for you and any passengers to get checked by a medical professional as soon as possible, and record any symptoms that you begin experiencing after the accident—however minor they may seem. If you refuse treatment, you will hear about it later.
  • Contact your auto insurance company. Generally, your insurance coverage will apply to an accident in Florida the same as it would in your home state. However, you’ll need to check with your provider to see if any exceptions apply. For example, different states have different minimum coverage requirements. If you only have the minimum amount at home and it is less than the minimums required in Florida, you may face unexpected costs. In addition, it’s important to know that if you are staying in Florida for more than 90 consecutive days and you’ll be using your car, you are required by law to purchase in-state auto insurance that meets Florida’s minimum liability requirements, including at least $10,000 of personal injury protection (PIP) coverage.
  • Contact a skilled Florida personal injury attorney. If you are injured in a car accident in Florida—even if you were partially at fault—you may still be able to recover damages, including medical expenses, vehicle repair, pain and suffering, and lost wages. And regardless of which state you’re from, Florida law will apply, and you will generally need to work with an attorney who is licensed to practice here. Therefore, calling a local personal injury attorney as soon as possible will help maximize your chances of pursuing a successful lawsuit after a car accident.

If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of being injured in a car accident while visiting Florida from out of state, the experienced personal injury attorneys at Leighton Law are here to help. With a long history of securing verdicts—sometimes in the seven-figure range—on behalf of car accident victims, we have the expertise needed to guide you through the process of seeking recovery for your injuries under the Florida legal system. Call us today at 888.988.1774 to schedule a consultation!

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