Understanding Florida’s Careless Driving Statute

Screen Shot 2022-02-09 at 12.03.01 PM

If you find yourself in an accident, the responding law enforcement officer will have to assess what happened and hold somebody at fault. Often, this results in the issuance of a ticket for careless driving. 

Does this mean the driver was intentionally driving without care for the cars, people, and property around you? No. Does it mean the driver could potentially put others in danger? Yes. 

There are three careless driving statutes in Florida that you need to know. Let’s take a closer look to gain a better understanding.  

Careless Driving 

The first – and most common – is the careless driving statute known as Florida Statute § 316.1925. According to this statute, “Any person operating a vehicle upon the streets or highways within the state shall drive the same in a careful and prudent manner, having regard for the width, grade, curves, corners, traffic, and all other attendant circumstances, so as not to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person.” Careless driving is referred to anyone who violates this. 

Aggressive Careless Driving

Aggressive careless driving is another common violation. According to Florida Statute § 316.1923, “Aggressive careless driving” means committing two or more of the following acts simultaneously or in succession…” This includes actions such as:

● Speeding

● Carelessly changing lanes

● Following too closely

● Not yielding to the right of way

● Improperly passing

● Not following traffic controls and signals

Reckless Driving

Finally, reckless driving, according to Florida Statute § 316.192 refers to, “Any person who drives any vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property…” These drivers were intentionally driving carelessly without any care for consequences. Weaving in and out of traffic, drag racing, driving at excessive speeds in neighborhoods are all examples. 

Personal Injury Claims

Each of these instances of careless driving can result in a moving violation with four (4) points on the individual’s license – but it doesn’t automatically award anything to the victim/injured party. It is important to note that just because someone is given a ticket for careless driving while at the accident scene, liability for an injury claim has not been established. Further, working with the other side’s insurance company can lead to a devaluation of your injuries or claim.

Because the traffic ticket and your personal injury claim are two different actions, seeking an experienced attorney can give you the best chance of obtaining the compensation you deserve. 

If you think you have a case, contact Winston Law. Our team will review your case and recommend the best next step.