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What is the Florida 14-day rule?

| Sep 6, 2019 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

It is probably a good idea to look up legal issues if you get into a collision on the Florida roads. However, you should also probably seek medical attention as soon as possible following the accident.

Florida has a regulation commonly known as the 14-day rule. Basically, this rule sets a time limit before which you should go seek medical attention. After the limit expires, you may no longer be eligible to claim certain types of insurance benefits. However, you would still want to seek an individual review of your case, even if 14 days had passed.

This rule comes from one of the Florida statutes on insurance, section 627.736, which compels insurance companies to provide personal injury protection to you in certain cases. This protection goes up to $10,000 and is eligible to provide you with a well-defined set of benefits. In this context, one of the most relevant categories of benefits contains the initial and referal services provided to you by various health care providers.

This law is part of Florida’s no-fault system, under which your insurance could cover you regardless of who is at fault for the accident. However, your promptness in seeking medical care after your accident could also have an effect on an different issue — your personal injury case. Although it is true that people do not always experience symptoms right away, the other party might argue that the likelihood of a serious injury tends to decline after 14 days.

You may be inclined to tough things out. If you have a higher tolerance for pain than most people, or if you have some aversion to going to a doctor, you may feel like procrastinating. It would probably be wise to put those feelings aside following an auto accident.

Your ability to reclaim compensation for your loss would probably be greater if you have your condition professionally reviewed. Additionally, catching a problem as early as possible often helps you recover from injuries more quickly. In any case, please get a specific review of any real situation regarding an accident or injury. This is not intended as advice. It is only background information.

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Dana Watts is a board certified civil trial lawyer by the Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization with more than 30 years of litigation experience. He also received an AV* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell.

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