Florida’s Comparative Negligence Law : What You Need to Know in 2023


Florida’s Comparative Negligence Law: What You Need to Know in 2023

If you have been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. However, you should be aware that Florida has recently changed its comparative negligence law, which affects how much you can recover from the liable party.

What is comparative negligence?

Comparative negligence is a legal doctrine that reduces your recovery based on your own percentage of fault for the accident. For example, if you were 25% at fault and the other party was 75% at fault, you could only recover 75% of your total damages.

Comparative negligence is based on the principle that each party should be held responsible for their own actions and the consequences they cause. It also aims to prevent unfair outcomes where a slightly negligent party would have to pay the full amount of damages to a more negligent party.

There are different types of comparative negligence rules that vary by state. Some states follow the pure comparative negligence rule, which allows you to recover damages even if you were more at fault than the other party. Other states follow the modified comparative negligence rule, which bars you from recovering damages if you were more than a certain percentage of fault, usually 50% or 51%.

What is the new comparative negligence rule in Florida?

Until March 24, 2023, Florida followed the pure comparative negligence rule, which allowed you to recover damages even if you were more at fault than the other party. For instance, if you were 60% at fault and the other party was 40% at fault, you could still recover 40% of your damages.

However, on March 24, 2023, Florida enacted a major tort reform bill that replaced the pure comparative negligence rule with the modified comparative negligence rule. Under this new rule, you can only recover damages if your percentage of fault is 50% or less. If you are more than 50% at fault, you are barred from any recovery. For example, if you are 51% at fault and the other party is 49% at fault, you cannot recover anything.

This new rule applies to all negligence actions that accrue after March 24, 2023. It does not apply to medical negligence actions. This new rule also shortens the statute of limitations for general negligence actions from four years to two years.

How does the new comparative negligence rule affect your personal injury claim?

The change from pure to modified comparative negligence will have a significant impact on your personal injury claim. It will make it more difficult for you to prove that the other party was more at fault than you. It will also reduce the amount of damages that you can recover if you are partially at fault. Therefore, it is crucial that you consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you protect your rights and maximize your recovery.

At Bengal Law: Florida Accident Lawyers and Personal Injury Attorneys PLLC, we have the knowledge and skills to handle any type of personal injury case. We have decades of experience in personal injury law and we have settled millions of dollars for our clients. We are former insurance adjusters and insurance defense attorneys, so we know how to deal with the insurance companies and maximize your recovery. We also offer prompt and attentive communication, low volume and high-value practice, and free consultations.

Don’t let the new comparative negligence law limit your rights and options. Contact us today and let us help you get the compensation that you deserve.

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If you have been injured in an accident in Florida, we want to hear your story. We want to know what you want to achieve through legal action. We want to know what you need to feel comfortable and secure as you rebuild the future you have always envisioned for your family. Together, we’ll identify a legal strategy that not only holds those responsible for your injuries accountable, but also helps you make a full financial recovery.

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Start today by texting or calling our office at (407) 815-3000 to schedule a consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys, or complete our contact form to start your journey of getting help. We look forward to serving you.

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