Some sources estimate that around 92,500 pregnant women are injured in car accidents each year. An unborn child faces substantial risk when a mother is subjected to the force of a car crash or slip and fall accident.
If you were involved in an accident and suffered a miscarriage immediately or in the weeks following, you owe it yourself and your child to take legal action. However, in the state of Florida, the legal action you are able to take may not be what you think.
Filing your claim
Under Florida law, the death of a fetus does not fall under the conditions of a wrongful death claim. Instead, suffering a miscarriage “counts” as a physical injury to the mother who was carrying the child. If you have suffered a miscarriage, you should file a personal injury claim.
However, you must be able to prove that another party’s negligence caused or contributed to the accident.
Unlike some other states, in Florida you may recover damages even if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident. In some states, if you are found to have carried more than half of the responsibility for the accident, you may not be able to recover any damages for an injury. In other states, being attributed with any fault at all may bar a plaintiff from recovering damages.
Florida, however, would allow a mother who lost her unborn child to recover damages even if she was mostly at fault for the accident.
In Florida, there is no limit on the amount you can collect for economic damages, such as medical bills and lost wages. There is also no limit for recovering non-economic damages for pain & suffering or mental anguish. The state does impose a limit on punitive damages. However, as these are exclusive to negligence cases involving seriously unethical or bad behavior, they are not common.
Because there is no cap on economic and non-economic damages you can seek for the tragic loss of your child, an attorney can help ensure that you are compensated appropriately for the life-long emotional effects of this terrible accident.
If you have undergone a miscarriage in an automobile crash, slip and fall or another accident, it’s paramount that you seek the services of a skilled personal injury attorney as soon as possible to file a claim against the involved negligent parties.
Under Florida's statute of limitations for personal injury cases, you have four years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit in Florida's civil courts. However, the sooner you file, the sooner a lawyer can help make sure you have medical information, witness testimonies, security footage and more to substantiate your claim.