The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that teen drivers have a high rate of fatal crashes.
Florida’s graduated driver licensing system, which is explained on the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) website, is designed to limit high-risk driving situations for new drivers and help reduce the rate of teen driving accidents.
A Gainesville teen driver accident lawyer from our team can review the circumstances surrounding your claim and your legal options. Contact us at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine by calling (800) 747-3733 to learn more about how we may be able to help you with the claims process.
Dangers of Teen Driving
The NHTSA points to the following reasons why teen driving is so dangerous:
- Immaturity: teen drivers may not be emotionally ready to handle the responsibilities of handling a machine that weighs thousands of pounds. They may try to show off to their friends by speeding, weaving in and out of lanes, or committing other traffic violations that can endanger them and others nearby.
- Lack of skills: most teen drivers have not yet developed skills to help them avoid common mistakes. They may also struggle with multi-tasking and may get distracted easily.
- Lack of experience: teen drivers have less experience, which may make them more prone to accidents.
Florida Teen Driver Laws
Florida’s graduated driver licensing system, which is explained on the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) website, is designed to limit high-risk driving situations for new drivers and help reduce the rate of teen driving accidents. According to these rules, teen drivers are restricted from driving during certain nighttime hours and without another licensed driver in the car who is over age 21.
Who May Be Responsible for Teen Driver Accidents
If you have gotten hurt in an accident caused by a minor, you may need to look to others for financial responsibility. A Gainesville teen driver accident lawyer from our team may be able to help determine other possible parties who may be responsible for the accident, such as:
- The parent: in certain situations, parents may be responsible for the negligent actions of their minor children.
- The owner of the vehicle: if the teen driver was driving someone else’s vehicle with their permission, you may have a claim against the owner of the vehicle who negligently entrusted the teen driver with their vehicle.
- An employer: many teens work at jobs involving delivering pizza, food, or other products in their personal vehicles. If they get in an accident while performing their job, the employer may be responsible for the negligent actions of their employees.
Minimum Insurance Laws
Florida is a no-fault insurance state. All drivers are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage and $10,000 in Property Damage Liability (PDL), according to the FLHSMV. This insurance covers up to 80 percent of emergency medical costs, regardless of fault:
If you get in an accident with a teen driver, you will first turn to your own insurance company for coverage. Under Florida Statutes § 627.737 you may be able to make a claim against the at-fault driver if you suffered any of the following types of injuries:
- “Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function”
- “Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability”
- “Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement”
Pursuing a claim of this nature may help you to obtain compensation for the damages not covered by your PIP insurance, including:
- Property damage
- The full cost of your medical expenses after PIP coverage
- The full cost of your lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Loss of household services
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
When you contact our firm, we can give you a better idea if your claim may fall out of the requirement to rely solely on your PIP coverage. We may also be able to give you an estimate of the value of your claim. Call (800) 747-3733 today for your free consultation with the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine.
How Our Personal Injury Team May Be Able to Help
Our personal injury team may be able to assist you with every aspect of your claim, including:
Investigating the Accident
Our team can investigate the accident and determine all potentially liable parties and sources of compensation. We can gather evidence that may establish that negligence caused the accident, such as:
- Skid marks that show the teen driver was speeding
- Breathalyzer test results that show the teen was impaired by alcohol at the time of the accident
- Eyewitness reports of the teen driving in a dangerous manner or not complying with the rules around graduated licensing
- Cell phone records that show the teen was texting or otherwise using a cell phone at the time of the accident
- The teen’s admissions that show he or she did not know how to react to a hazard
Handling the Insurance Claim
We can handle all communication with the insurance company while you focus on your recovery. We may also provide supplemental information to substantiate your request for compensation and fight for fair compensation for your claim.
Pursuing Legal Action
If the insurance company refuses to provide fair compensation for your claim, we can discuss the next steps and pursue legal action within the appropriate time frame.
Contact Our Personal Injury Team for Help
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident involving a teen driver, a Gainesville teen driver accident lawyer from the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine may be able to help. We may be able to assist with all aspects of your claim, including documenting your injuries, gathering medical records, investigating the accident, communicating with the insurance company, and negotiating a fair claim on your behalf. We seek to take care of your claim while you focus on your medical recovery. Call our team today at (800) 747-3733 for a free consultation to learn more about your legal rights and options.
We Can Help.