As a result of House Bill 837, injured citizens of Florida are facing a devastating blow. This legislation is a gift to the insurance companies and a severe reduction in individual rights. It will have far-reaching consequences, leaving injured individuals with fewer options for fair compensation. However, top-notch lawyers are still committed to representing their clients and working harder to ensure a strong recovery, even under this new landscape.
The changes brought forth by this bill will have significant impacts on many types of claims, how they can be presented, and the evidence needed to win. While there are currently more questions than answers, as the courts resolve the constitutional challenges, we can expect further clarity.
A significant change is the length of time you now have to bring your case. Those injured in negligence cases of all types, including car crashes, motorcycle claims and slip and falls, now have only two years to bring your claim, compared to having four years under prior law. This change went into effect for all incidents that occur after March 24, 2023. Another devastating consequence of this law is a change from comparative negligence to modified contributory negligence. This means that if a jury determines that you are more than 50% at fault for your losses, you are completely barred from making any recovery against the other party.
Although the changes brought about by the bill are unfortunate, we need not be afraid. Now is a time to be emboldened and continue to fight and represent our clients. Despite this challenge, we will persevere.