Average Car Accident Settlements in Florida

Florida car accident settlement values can range from the thousands to the millions. Some factors that impact case value, like the extent of injuries, are outside your control. However, there are many steps you can take to help increase your car accident settlement amount.

A severely damaged vehicle after a car accident.

Take the time to do your research after a Florida car accident. Doing so can help ensure you’re informed about the best ways to protect your finances after a crash.

What Determines Car Accident Settlements in Florida?

If you’re trying to understand average car accident settlements in Florida, you first need to know that numerous factors impact your overall car accident case value. Considering each of these factors in your own case can give you an idea of what a fair settlement looks like, given your circumstances.

Insurance Coverage

Car insurance policy limits represent one of the most important areas of car accident settlements. If you have $50,000 in medical expenses but the other driver’s insurance only covers up to $10,000 in bodily injury, the policy limit can curb the amount you’re able to recover. Insurance could also affect your case differently depending on:

  • Whether you carry comprehensive or collision coverage
  • What the other driver’s policy limits are
  • Whether multiple other drivers were involved in the crash

All these elements and more alter the insurance policy limits your lawyer can take advantage of as they work to obtain compensation for you.


Liability is another concern directly impacting how much you can recover in a car accident settlement. Florida requires all drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which pays up to $10,000 for bodily injury, regardless of who caused the crash.

Minor injuries will probably be covered under your PIP insurance. Unfortunately, major injuries often incur costs that far exceed that amount. Your lawyer can work to obtain more compensation through the insurance policy by proving the other driver’s negligence caused the crash.

Florida uses a system of comparative negligence. This means that a percentage of fault gets assigned to both you and the other driver. As long as you bear 50% or less of the fault, you can still recover compensation. However, whatever the agreed-upon settlement is, the amount you receive is reduced by the percentage of fault you bear.

The Severity of the Injuries

The severity of your car accident injuries is another factor that significantly impacts how much compensation you can recover in a car accident settlement. Florida law establishes a serious injury threshold. Injuries are regarded as “serious” if they meet any of these criteria:

  • Serious and permanent injury
  • Permanent loss of an important bodily function
  • Permanent and serious loss of vision
  • Death

Serious injuries naturally lead to higher costs. These expenses might include greater amounts of medical debt or the loss of earning ability.

However, they also impact your ability to recover certain types of non-economic damages, which compensate you for the mental and emotional toll of your injury. Florida residents can only recover pain and suffering damages if their injury meets the state’s serious injury threshold.

Cost of Medical Expenses

Medical expenses often make up a significant portion of your car accident settlement. The purpose of seeking a car accident settlement is to ensure you don’t end up paying for injuries that someone else caused. Your settlement should compensate you for any past or future medical costs incurred by the crash. These can include:

  • Medical bills
  • Surgery bills
  • Specialist bills
  • Therapist bills
  • Prescription medications
  • Ambulance bills
  • Medical devices
  • Attendant care costs

Serious or permanent injuries naturally lead to greater medical expenses, increasing your overall settlement value. Your settlement can also encompass future costs, such as the costs of long-term attendant care or future surgeries you’ll need.

Previous Injuries

Previous or pre-existing injuries are another factor that can impact how much you’re able to recover from a car accident claim. Insurance companies are quick to look for pre-existing conditions, using them to diminish the compensation you’re eligible for. When seeking compensation for car accident injuries, you must separate the impact of previous injuries from those of your crash injuries. This can make it much more complicated to identify what you’re owed in areas like pain and suffering. It also gives the insurance adjuster a valid reason for reducing your compensation.

Strength of Evidence

If you suffered serious car accident injuries that exceed the amounts offered by PIP coverage, your lawyer needs to establish liability by proving the other driver caused the crash.

However, this isn’t always easy to do. Most drivers don’t come forward and admit they caused the crash. Your lawyer needs to collect evidence proving you weren’t at fault. This can take the form of:

  • Traffic or security camera footage
  • Eyewitness testimony
  • Cell phone records
  • Substance use testing
  • Accident reconstruction specialist testimony

If your car accident attorney can collect evidence proving the other driver caused the crash, it gives you legal grounds for a claim. It also helps ensure that most or all of the fault is placed on the other driver.

What You Can Do to Increase Your Settlement Amount

It’s easy to see that calculating case value for a Florida car accident is a complicated process. Many key factors are outside of your control. However, there are also plenty of steps you can take to protect yourself and potentially increase your case value.

Document the Scene

Documenting the scene of the accident helps preserve evidence against the other driver. If possible, take pictures of vehicle damage and the accident scene, as well as your injuries. Write down your account of the accident as soon as possible, including any details about how it happened.

Gather Witness Information

Eyewitness testimony can make a significant difference in your case, especially when there are no traffic cameras or other documentation of the crash. When it’s your word against the other driver’s, witness statements make a big difference. You should attempt to collect the names and contact information of anyone who witnessed the accident.

Do Not Admit Fault

Never admit fault in a crash accident. Don’t apologize to the other driver or post about the crash on social media. You’ll likely need to provide a statement to the police when they take the accident report. Say as little as you can when you do, and don’t make statements that could be used to prove you were partially at fault.

Seek Medical Treatment

It’s important to always see a doctor after a car accident, even if you feel okay. Many types of car accident injuries can have delayed symptoms.

Seeing a doctor immediately ensures injuries are diagnosed. Doing so also establishes documentation that the accident was the source of any injuries you might not feel until later. It’s important to also follow all medical advice, including attending any follow-up appointments.

Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney

The best way to protect your finances is by contacting a car accident attorney as soon as possible after the crash. An experienced lawyer helps you protect your finances and understand your options. They’ll also protect you from insurance adjuster tactics by handling communication on your behalf.

Keep Track of All Expenses

Since much of your car accident case value is based on your injury costs, it’s important to keep careful track of your expenses. Maintain records of all bills and receipts for anything you spent money on related to the accident.

Document All Financial Damages

Finally, it also helps to keep track of all forms of financial damage the accident has caused you. This includes losses such as:

  • Diminished vehicle value
  • Vehicle repair costs
  • Present and future lost wages and benefits

Items like these can be used to increase your overall case value.

Florida Law Puts Caps on Some Damages

You can recover both economic and non-economic damages in a Florida car accident case. If you end up going to court, there’s also a possibility of obtaining a third type of compensation: punitive damages. These are reserved for claims involving an extreme degree of negligence or intentional harm.

Even if you obtain punitive damages through a court verdict, Florida law places a cap of $500,000 on the amount you can recover.

Learn How a Florida Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

A gavel on a car accident attorney's desk.

If you’ve been seriously injured in a Tampa car accident, you don’t have any time to waste. The sooner you call a Florida car accident lawyer, the better your chances of obtaining the injury compensation you need. When you choose Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys, you don’t pay unless we win.


FLA. HB 387.

FLA. STA. § 324.021(7).

FLA. STA. § 676.737(2).

FLA. STA. § 768.73(2).

The information contained herein is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

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