Florida Court Considers Uninsured Motorist Claim Against Insurance Company in Recent Car Accident Case

September 15, 2020

While car insurance is required for every Florida driver, in reality, a frighteningly large number of Florida drivers are uninsured. This can cause significant problems when they get into accidents. In fact, other drivers’ lack of insurance is one of the reasons that all Florida drivers are encouraged to purchase Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Insurance (UIM).

If a Florida driver is seriously injured in an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver, they may be unable to recover fully for their injuries and the resulting medical bills, forcing them to pay out of pocket for an accident they did not cause. UIM protects drivers by providing coverage for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, helping to make sure that a Florida car accident victim does not go bankrupt solely because they were hit by an uninsured motorist.

Despite its importance, UIM benefits can sometimes be difficult to actually obtain, since insurance companies may attempt to find ways to avoid paying the amount that they owe their clients. For example, take a recent Florida case where an injured driver had to take her insurance company, USAA, to court to try and recover UIM damages she believed she was owed. The plaintiff had suffered injuries to her left knee while attending the U.S. Naval Academy and had even needed knee surgery in the past. She presented evidence to the jury, however, that her left knee was further injured in the car accident she was involved in, which was caused by an uninsured motorist. USAA attempted to escape liability by arguing that the plaintiff’s knee was already injured before the car accident and that she was not entitled to compensation from her insurance.

The trial court directed the jury’s verdict towards the plaintiff, and the plaintiff was subsequently awarded $80,000 from USAA. However, USAA appealed this directed verdict. On appeal, the court reversed, finding that a directed verdict was not appropriate in the case. Directed verdicts are extremely rare in this type of case, and the court should have allowed the case to go to the jury. While there is some argument that USAA did not present as extensive of a case as the plaintiff, the court found that they presented enough that a reasonable jury could find in their favor.

Contact a Florida Car Accident Attorney

If you’ve recently been injured in a Florida car accident, you may be struggling to pay for car repairs and medical expenses in the aftermath. Contact the Florida personal injury attorneys at the Grife Law Firm to hear how we can assist you. With decades of experience helping Florida clients recover financially in personal injury lawsuits, you can trust your case is in good hands when you work with us. Whether you need assistance recovering from a negligent driver or a difficult insurance company, the Grife Law Firm will work tirelessly on your behalf. Contact us today to learn more and to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our dedicated attorneys. Call us at 855-998-0770, or fill out our online form.