T-bone collisions, or broadside accidents, are terrifying and can cause severe injuries and death. These accidents happen when the front end of one vehicle crashes into the side of another, hence the name T-bone. 

Because of the side impact, T-bone accidents cause an unequal force distribution. Most of the force is on the driver’s or passenger’s side, which can lead to serious consequences. 

For instance, T-bone collisions may cause airbag injuries because the direct impact of the crash can cause the side and front airbags to deploy with extreme force. This can cause facial fractures, severe bruising, and internal injuries. 

In Florida, car accident statistics are on the rise, including T-bone crashes. Nationwide, T-bone accidents, which tend to happen at intersections, account for 13% of all vehicle accidents and 18% of fatal accidents. 

So, no matter where you are driving, it is important to know what to do in the event of a T-bone crash, especially if you sustain serious injuries. 

This article highlights when to seek compensation after a T-bone crash and explains how Florida’s law regulates car accidents. 

Florida’s No-Fault System and PIP 

Florida’s no-fault system includes mandatory PIP (personal injury protection) driver coverage.

This coverage provides up to $10,000 for your medical expenses and lost income, whether you are at fault for a T-bone accident or not. 

If you want to use your PIP benefits, you must do something about claiming within the 14 days following the accident. 

Moreover, you will only qualify for the full PIP benefit if you are diagnosed with a serious, emergency medical condition within these 14 days. 

So, that means that PIP coverage pays for 80% of eligible medical care after an accident, up to a limit of $10,000 (per person). Your medical treatment will be covered until you reach this limit. 

If you sustain injuries that lead to a disability and can no longer work, this no-fault coverage will cover up to 60% of your expenses up to the maximum limit. 

What to Consider Regarding Florida’s No-Fault Insurance

There are significant caveats to Florida’s no-fault insurance. This insurance is mandatory, so drivers have no obligation to take out bodily injury liability coverage as an added extra. If you are severely injured in a T-bone collision, the at-fault driver may not have enough insurance to sustain your claim. 

Moreover, $10,000 is very little compared to 2024’s medical treatment costs. This means using up the entire amount after an accident will not take long. 

You also cannot claim non-economic damages unless you have a permanent injury. These regulations cut down on how much you can claim after a serious T-bone accident. 

Determining Fault After a T-Bone Collision

T-bone accidents are especially deadly, but still, it is usually difficult to determine fault. Many factors play a role in these collisions, including speed, driver error or action, and vehicle position. 

It is also important to disregard the most common misconception about T-bone accidents: The driver who collides with the side of another vehicle is automatically at fault for the accident. This is untrue because liability for a T-bone accident can only be determined after an investigation.

Other factors that can aid fault determination include distracted driving, disregard for traffic signals or right-of-way, and drunken driving. 

Seeking Compensation After a T-Bone Collision 

The chances are high that you will exceed your PIP coverage limits if you sustain serious injuries in a T-bone accident. 

If the at-fault driver has enough insurance, you may be able to file a claim against their insurance provider. 

The extent and severity of your injuries will affect the compensation you can claim from the insurer. And, if your injuries prevent you from earning an income, you can add a claim for diminished earning capacity. In this case, you must provide proof of your current income and employment history. 

In some instances, you can claim the entire amount required to replace or repair your car. 

Preparing Your Legal Case

You must follow certain steps if you want a better chance at securing compensation after a T-bone accident. These include gathering evidence like police reports, accident photos, and repair estimates. 

You will likely need witness statements from anyone who can corroborate the events before, during, and after the accident. 

Hiring a personal injury lawyer to guide you through the legal process and negotiate with insurance providers is also a good idea. 

Remember that Florida has a four-year statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits. This means you cannot file a claim if more than four years have passed since the accident. 

Florida also follows a modified comparative negligence system. If you are partially at fault, your compensation will be reduced by your assigned fault percentage. 

Moreover, if you are more than 50% at fault for the accident, you cannot claim compensation. 

Communicating With Insurance Providers

If you want to communicate with insurance providers instead of letting your lawyer handle it, you must be prepared for everything they throw your way. 

Insurance companies are known for disputing claims, and if they cannot dispute yours, they will likely offer you a low settlement amount. If you accept an offer that is too low, it may not even cover your short-term expenses, not to mention the long-term ones. 

Before accepting an offer, you must know exactly what type of injuries and long-term health conditions you may suffer. 

At the same time, letting your lawyer handle all these negotiations will be much easier. 

Your lawyer will advise you about the possibility of medical liens in your case and what you can do about non-economic damages if you suffer a disability. 

Also, if your case involves a passenger fatality, your lawyer can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. 

Getting the Compensation You Deserve

Florida’s no-fault system offers some support after a T-bone collision, but it will most likely not be enough to cover all the damages after a severe accident. 

You must understand the limits of PIP and what you can and cannot claim after an accident. If you build a strong case and get help from a personal injury lawyer, you have a better chance of getting the compensation you deserve. 


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