What Is the Florida 14-Day Accident Law?

February 7, 2024
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Car insurance is a big topic of discussion in Florida. After all, it’s one of the most expensive states in the country for car insurance coverage.

Two big elements of Florida car insurance are the no-fault law and the 14-day accident law. So, how do these affect you and your medical treatment after a car accident, and how can a chiropractor help you following a car accident?

Read on to find out.

What Is the 14-Day Accident Law?

The Florida No-Fault law requires all drivers to carry at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) as part of their car insurance. This means that if you’re in an accident, no matter who is the at-fault driver, your medical treatment will first be covered by your own personal PIP coverage.

The 14-day accident law ties directly into the no-fault law, because for your PIP to cover any medical treatment related to the accident, you must seek treatment within 14 days.

Your PIP will cover only 80% of your medical fees while your personal health coverage would cover the remaining 20%. The coverage applies to medical treatment performed by EMTs, emergency room personnel, your primary doctor, dentists, chiropractors, and more.

If you do not seek treatment within 14 days of your accident, your car insurance will not cover any of your medical expenses. Instead it will all be on your personal health insurance and out of pocket.

This is why it’s crucial to seek some form of treatment soon after an accident, even if you don’t feel much pain at the time. Not only will your coverage cost you less out-of-pocket, but early treatment can detect hidden injuries and prevent them from becoming major.

Furthermore, if you require treatment that exceeds your PIP coverage, a prompt diagnosis can be very helpful in securing a larger car accident settlement. Common injuries, such as whiplash and concussion, may require months of chiropractic care to fully recover.

 

Chiropractor treating a patient's neck.

 

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Benefits of Seeing a Car Accident Chiropractor

While most car accidents only result in minor injuries, minor injuries can build into major ones if you don’t treat them properly.

And chiropractic care is one of the most useful treatments when it comes to treating minor car accident injuries.

Some of the most common car accident injuries are whiplash, head injuries, joint misalignment, and soft tissue injuries, and chiropractors can help treat each of these.

Spinal adjustments can alleviate swelling and pressure in your muscles and nerves, reducing your pain and discomfort all over. Chiropractic treatment can alleviate back, joint, and neck pain (crucial for whiplash treatment), increase your range of motion and strength of your muscles, and help reduce headaches.

Furthermore, after a car accident, a chiropractor performs a full examination, and they might even catch some injuries that an X-ray won’t, which can strengthen your PIP claim. While PIP covers 80% of your medical treatments related to the accident, the full dollar amount depends on your injuries.

A chiropractic exam will shed light on your injuries and what treatment is needed, increasing the likelihood of more PIP coverage.

Finally, chiropractic is a non-invasive treatment, and chiropractors are very accustomed to treating car accident victims on late notice. You will typically have an easier time booking a last-minute chiropractic appointment than you would with your primary physician.

 

Early Treatment Is the Best Health Practice

Many people will avoid seeking medical treatment if they’re not in any sort of pain or discomfort—whether they’ve recently been in a car accident or not. There are several reasons that’s not a smart idea.

First off, as previously stated, the 14-day accident law in Florida gives you a very limited time frame during which you can seek treatment and have it covered by your car insurance, rather than your health insurance.

At the very least, this could mean fewer out-of-pocket costs for you.

More importantly however, just because you’re not showing signs of an injury doesn’t mean there isn’t one, especially after the blunt force trauma of a car accident.

Hidden injuries can be life altering if left alone and allowed to worsen, and whiplash, head injuries, and spinal injuries are all ailments that don’t present symptoms right away. Some may take days to appear, while others may take weeks or months.

Pain or fatigue that increases over time are both signs of a hidden injury, and when it’s something as serious as your back, neck, and head, you can’t be overly cautious.

Seeing a chiropractor in the days immediately following an accident will help you detect injuries you may not feel yet, and the sooner you have a diagnosis, the sooner treatment can begin. Early detection and treatment are the best cures after all.

Man on the phone sitting by his car after a fender bender.

Personal Injury Chiropractor & Car Insurance

The benefit to adhering to the 14-Day Accident Law is that injury victims may be able to seek care and less out of pocket costs by using their car insurance company benefits as opposed to their health insurance.

Which option is better depends entirely on your car insurance coverage compared to your health insurance coverage.

When you become a patient at Oviedo Chiropractic, we will carefully navigate your care options with your car insurance company. As personal injury chiropractor experts, we make sure that you get the care you need during stressful events like car accidents.

 

Visit Oviedo Chiropractic for Total Body Care After a Car Accident

Being in a car accident is bad enough, but fortunately, Florida’s No-Fault and 14-Day Accident Laws help you get treatment fast while limiting your out-of-pocket costs. The best way to lessen the impact of a car accident, physically and financially, is to see a chiropractor in the days immediately following.

At Oviedo Chiropractic, we’re experts in treating numerous ailments, in particular car accident injuries. Even a minor fender bender can cause lasting damage, and that’s why we work hard to treat you as soon as possible after your accident, including same-day appointments.

We give every patient a full medical examination and personalized treatment plan tailored specifically to your lifestyle and condition.

Contact us today if you’re recently been in an accident in Orlando Florida so we can get you back to your normal routine.

 

Justin Cough

Dr. Justin Cough, D.C.

Dr. Cough graduated from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Port Orange, FL after receiving his BS in Education from SUNY Oswego. Before becoming a chiropractor, he coached many middle and high school sports teams including football, lacrosse, basketball, and soccer. He is passionate about focusing on our bodies' natural healing mechanisms and helping his patients enjoy the utmost sustainability in their lives.

For some, chiropractic offers relief from pain. For others, it's about feeling and looking good. Call today and see what chiropractic can do for you!

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Phone:
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