A Florida jury recently awarded a staggering $52 million in damages to a family that were the plaintiffs in an auto negligence lawsuit.

Five family members, including four children under the age of 12, suffered life-altering injuries as the result of a car accident that occurred in Ocala, Florida. In late December of 2013, the mother of the family was driving her 2011 sedan with her four minor children as passengers. While stopped at a red light, the family was violently struck from behind by a vehicle traveling at high speeds. The force pushed the family’s sedan into the vehicle in front, leaving all five occupants with severe auto injuries.

The youngest child, only 23 months old, suffered severe brain and cervical spine injuries, a fractured pelvic bone, and multiple fractures to his left leg. After several surgeries, he is left a paraplegic with no use of his hands. The three other children also suffered injuries that required multiple surgeries, skin grafting, and other extensive treatment, some of which will be required for the remainder of their lives.

This tragic story is yet another example of how someone else’s negligence can alter the lives of others without warning. While no amount of insurance coverage will be able to compensate this family for the suffering they’ve gone through, it can still serve as a reminder to other drivers that car accidents will happen and that it’s important to be prepared.

Florida does not require drivers to carry bodily injury coverage on their auto insurance policy. This means if someone hits you and you sustain injuries, you have no claim to seek compensation under the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. This is even more important in areas like Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Hollywood, Davie, Aventura, Miami and other cities throughout South Florida, where there is a high percentage of uninsured and underinsured drivers. For this reason, it is beneficial for drivers to carry as much uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage on their auto policy as they can because this coverage may help provide compensation in the event you are involved in a car accident with an uninsured driver.

For more information on this topic or any other, please feel free to contact the Schulman Law Group at (954) 349-3300, or at info@schulaw.com