Receiving Compensation After a Golf Cart Accident in Florida
March 7, 2023
According to the Florida State Golf Association, over 1,050 golf courses exist in Florida. Many of them utilize golf carts as the most efficient way to travel between greens. The convenience of golf carts has also made them an increasingly popular transportation method in residential communities throughout Florida. However, the rise of golf cart usage also increases the risk of accidents. The Consumer Products Safety Commission estimates that there are 15,000 serious golf cart-related injuries every year. Were you injured in a golf cart accident? Here’s what you need to know about filing a claim to receive compensation for your injuries.
Filing a Claim After A Golf Cart Accident
To file a claim with a personal injury attorney to receive compensation after a golf cart accident, you must provide evidence that another person’s negligence caused the accident. The golf cart driver or owner must have had a legal duty to provide reasonable care for you while operating or maintaining their golf cart. For instance, if you were a passenger in another person’s golf cart, the driver has a legal duty to reasonably protect their passengers and take necessary safety precautions. If your accident involved another golf cart or vehicle, the other driver was expected to follow traffic laws to maintain their vehicle to prevent accidents. You will need to prove that the other driver breached their duty of care and that you suffered harm because of this breach.
Types of Damages that Can Be Recovered
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, you may be entitled to certain types of damages, including:
These damages cover tangible losses you suffered because of the accident, such as out-of-pocket medical expenses, vehicle repair costs, and lost wages due to time off work.
Punitive damages go beyond compensating for basic losses. They are usually awarded when the defendant’s behavior was extremely hazardous, such as drunk driving.
Emotional distress damages
Also referred to as pain and suffering, these damages take into account the emotional toll of the accident. This could include compensation for treatment related to depression, anxiety, or PTSD.
You may be able to recover attorney fees from the defendant for filing your claim.
How to Protect Yourself from Getting in a Golf Cart Accident
The best way to protect yourself and other drivers from being involved in a golf cart accident is to be aware of your surroundings and practice safe driving. Understand the laws surrounding golf cart usage, according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. This includes ensuring your golf cart is registered and has the proper equipment, such as headlamps, turn signals, a windshield, and seatbelts. You will also need to operate your vehicle on designated roads. For instance, golf carts can only drive on public roads with posted speed limits of 35 mph or less. However, cities and residential communities may have their own regulations regarding when and where you can drive a golf cart, so check your local guidelines first.
Common Causes of Golf Cart Accidents
Some of the most common reasons golf cart accidents occur are:
Safety malfunctions and defective parts, such as golf cart safety recalls
Negligent, intoxicated, or distracted driving
Lack of required safety features such as seat belts, brakes, and lights
Driver or passenger ejection from the golf cart due to speeding or reckless driving.
How to File a Claim for Damages after a Golf Cart Accident
If you’ve been involved in a golf cart accident, seek medical care immediately. Then, contact a personal injury attorney, like our team at Oldham & Smith, to file a claim. We will investigate all aspects of the case to find all parties responsible, such as negligent drivers or government agencies who failed to maintain the road. We work diligently to ensure you receive all the compensation you’re entitled to for your accident. Call us at 352-744-7717 to discuss your case.