Receiving news about your parents' car accident when you're not nearby can be terrifying. Unfortunately, a Florida Department of Transportation study has found that while older drivers (age 65 and older) tend to be involved in fewer car crashes overall, they are twice as likely to be involved in one that involves a fatality.
This frightening statistic may inspire you to have a difficult conversation with your elderly parents about whether they should still be behind the wheel at all. But practically speaking, what should you do if your parents have been in an accident and you're not located within the state to help?
Some of the core issues you may need to address include:
Current and Ongoing Medical Care
Your loved one's health and safety are your utmost concern. Depending on your parent's current living situation and future medical needs, you may need to gather information on temporary or long-term care facilities, such as assisted living or nursing homes. Such placements could be influenced by your parent's financial status, particularly if they receive government benefits such as Medicare or Medicaid.
Insurance Coverage Questions
Dealing with an insurance company after a car accident can be a hassle for anyone, but it can be especially complicated when you weren't even involved in the accident yourself. Just as with any car accident, you may have questions of liability and coverage for not only the vehicles involved but also for medical care. Of course, you want to make sure your parents receive the settlement they deserve.
In addition to whether or not your loved one is liable for the accident, you may also wonder about your own liability if you already had concerns about their safety as a driver. While generally speaking, adult children will not be held responsible in such situations, there could be extenuating circumstances—such as whether you have a power of attorney—that could influence the outcome in your case.
If your elderly parent has been in a car accident in South Florida and you are out of state, know that the attorneys at Bottari & Doyle, P.A. understand the complexities of personal injury and car accident cases. We are here to listen and ensure your loved one is in good legal hands. Call us at (561) 588-2781 for a free case review today.