About three million Canadians travel to Florida each year for part or all of the winter, according to some polls. In addition, millions of Canadians travel to the state each year for shorter vacations. Florida cities such as Hollywood promise warm climates, a relatively easy-to-drive route, and affordable living.
However, being in a car accident in Hollywood can be especially upsetting for someone who is not an American citizen or resident. The rules are slightly different, and it can be frustrating and upsetting for victims to try to deal with two systems. The best way to avoid hassle is to take some precautions:
1) Plan well in advance of your trip. If you are a Canadian, you will generally be able to access Canadian insurance benefits even if you are in a traffic accident in Hollywood or another US city. However, keep in mind that lower minimum insurance requirements are in place in Florida than in many Canadian provinces. In addition, you will be dealing with a difference of currency and costs. To protect yourself, speak with your insurance provider before you travel to discuss what is covered. This way, you can get additional coverage to close any gaps. Be sure to also secure travel insurance and health coverage. If you are injured in a slip and fall accident in Hollywood – or another incident – your province’s health care system will not cover the costs.
2) Be prepared for an accident. No one expects to be in a car or truck accident in Hollywood or another city. However, it does happen. To stay prepared, be sure you have a first-aid kit, disposable camera (or cell phone) and your insurance carrier’s information in the car with you at all times.
3) Take steps to prevent an accident. Get familiar with the area where you will be driving as well as with weather and road work conditions when you travel. Drive only when you are sober, in good physical condition, and well-rested. Keep your car in good physical condition so that a mechanical problem does not cause an accident.
4) Get familiar with local laws. Florida laws are in some ways similar. Just as in Canada, you must not drink and drive and you must stay to help if you are involved in an accident. However, there are important insurance and legal differences. Get familiar with these differences before you travel.
5) If you are in an accident, speak with a personal injury attorney. If the worst happens and you are in an accident, contact a personal injury attorney in Hollywood or your community. You do have the option of contacting an attorney in Canada as well, but a Florida attorney will be familiar with local laws, US insurance providers, and local resources that can help you.
If you have been injured in Hollywood or any Florida community, you can always contact the Flaxman Law Group law firm for a free, no obligation case review. As part of the Hollywood community, the Flaxman Law Group has seen how challenging the insurance process can be for Florida visitors.