Dan Irving Cytryn, Esq.: May 2009 Archives

May 15, 2009

Drinking, Speeding, Early Hours And Sleep Deprivation Bad Combo

Broward County: A Coral Springs, Florida man who police said may have been speeding was killed early this morning when his car struck a tree in a one car collision. Whether sleep deprivation, drunk driving, or simply excessive speed contributed to another of a rash of deaths in Coral Springs this year has yet to be determined.

Florida was third in the country in 2006 in drunk driving deaths with 1,111. Nationwide, the number of deaths in 2007 was 15,387. Alcohol is a contributing factor in about 37% of traffic crashes occurring nationwide.

Falling asleep or drowsy driving is most common in age 16 to 29 age group. Although actual statistics are not kept, sleep deprivation and drowsy driving is the number three cause of crash deaths in the United States today. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that fatigue is a very common factor in car accident crash and death cases today.

The moral of the story: Be wary driving after midnight. They say: "Drive defensively"--this applies even more so after midnight. The number of people on the road being under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or sleep deprived, or speeders, or a combination of the foregoing, increases immensely. Try to keep yourself and your children off the road between the hours of midnight and six a.m., the time when the likelihood of the incidents occurring, increases immensely. If you must drive, be ultra cautious.

If you or a family member are a victim, contact a lawyer for information. Various different areas to look for compensation for injuries include drivers and their family's insurance coverage, your own family's uninsured motorist coverage, and in rare occasions involving alcohol, whom the alcohol was purchased from and whether that involved underage drinking or serving someone who is known to be an alcoholic.

Additionally, any serious vehicle crash involving death or serious bodily injury should also be investigated from the prospective of whether something about the vehicle (perhaps a vehicle defect) contributed to the death or worsened the injury.

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May 5, 2009

Florida Insurance Companies Rated for Payouts on Car Accident Injury Claims

Periodically, we rate insurance companies doing business in Florida for fairness in paying out to claimants sums for injuries sustained in auto accidents. Since our practice is primarily dealing with crashes in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties, we emphasize that our ratings are based upon the reasonableness of the payouts to vehicle accident claimants and pedestrians, including bicyclists or motorcycle accident victims, in South Florida.

Most insurance companies are similar in what they pay out for property damage, with some, of course, being better than the others. However, our emphasis is on what these insurance companies are paying out for pain and suffering type damages, that is, intangible damages, and what the total payout is for bodily injuries.

As of this date, here are our ratings. We use an A through F scale, with, of course, A being the best, F being the worst. When purchasing insurance coverage (whether homeowners or auto), of course, price is an issue, but ultimately, whether you are unnecessarily dragged into a lawsuit if your insurance company acts in bad faith may depend upon these ratings:

 
Chubb A

Crum & Forster A

Travelers B+

Zurich B+

American International (their subsidiaries) B

Amica B

Safeco B

Liberty Mutual B-

First Floridian C+

Nationwide C+

Hartford C+

State Farm Insurance Companies C to C+

Metropolitan C

GMAC Insurance C

USAA D+

Federated National Insurance (American Vehicle) D

Allstate Insurance Company D

Mercury D

Ocean Harbor D

Progressive Insurance Companies D

US Security Insurance D

United Automobile Insurance Company F

Geico F

 
At this time, GEICO is the worst paying MAJOR auto insurer in the State of Florida for bodily injury claims, followed by Progressive, and then Allstate.

Good luck when purchasing insurance or making claims for injuries, if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident.

I hope that this information helps you in your insurance choices and selections.

Continue reading "Florida Insurance Companies Rated for Payouts on Car Accident Injury Claims" »

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