Treat a Florida car accident with an unlicensed driver much as you would any car accident. For example, call local law enforcement, get contact information from the other driver, including insurance, and take pictures if possible. An unlicensed at-fault driver will still be liable to compensate you for your losses and injuries. However, collecting that compensation can be a challenge.
Our Florida car accident lawyers at Kogan & DiSalvo can help you meet that challenge and recover the damages you need for your recovery. Even if your losses appear minor, contact us before you agree to a quick settlement or you sign a release of all claims form. In many cases, you may be eligible to collect a substantially larger damages award even if the at-fault driver is not carrying a valid license.
How can you recover your damages when an at-fault driver is unlicensed?
Florida is a no-fault insurance state, which means that your medical expenses and other costs and financial losses will be reimbursed by your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. However, if your damages are significant, you may need to file a lawsuit against the unlicensed at-fault driver to maximize your car accident settlement.
In Florida, auto insurance follows the vehicle first and the driver second. A driver might have had their license suspended or revoked, for example, because of a conviction for driving under the influence, accumulating too many moving violations, or failing to renew a license. However, regardless of the suspension or revocation, that driver might still maintain insurance on the vehicle.
Is an unlicensed driver automatically at-fault for a car accident?
The status of a driver’s license may be a factor in proving fault, but unlicensed drivers are not automatically liable for car accidents. The evidence surrounding the accident must show that they were negligent. For example, there were speeding or disregarding other traffic laws, driving under the influence, being distracted due to texting or other phone use, or otherwise operating a vehicle in an unsafe manner.
As noted above, you should treat a Florida car accident with an unlicensed driver much as you would any car accident:
- Contact local law enforcement to report the accident, regardless of whether the unlicensed driver asks you not to, and get a copy of the police report.
- Get the unlicensed driver’s contact details, including any insurance information they may be willing to provide.
- Take photos of the vehicles and the accident scene.
- Seek immediate medical treatment for injuries to yourself or other passengers in your car.
- Contact your own insurance carrier to file a claim under your PIP insurance
- Retain a Florida car accident attorney with experience filing claims and recovering damages from unlicensed drivers.
What if the unlicensed driver is also uninsured?
Your car accident lawyer will conduct a detailed evaluation of the evidence in your case and will identify all potential sources of damages recovery. This may include employers, equipment manufacturers, law enforcement authorities that participated in dangerous pursuits, and local municipalities that failed to maintain roads properly. You should retain a lawyer as soon as possible after your accident to allow ample time for your lawyer to complete that evaluation.
Call Kogan & DiSalvo for a Free Case Evaluation
When you are in an accident caused by an unlicensed driver, we can help you recover the largest reimbursement from your PIP insurance policy. Our team can also work to get compensation from other insurance carriers through lawsuits and claims for damages against all potentially liable parties.
Do not hesitate to call us as soon as possible after your accident. We have offices in Boca Raton and at multiple other locations in Southeastern Florida. Call us before you accept any insurance settlements, regardless of how minor your damages and losses might appear. We will fight tirelessly to get you the largest available damages award, and because we work on a contingency basis, there are no upfront legal fees.