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Golf cart accidents and personal injury liability

On Behalf of | Feb 23, 2024 | Personal Injury

Golf carts can be a fun mode of transportation. They are commonplace in Florida due to the nice weather year-round.

However, these vehicles are not immune to accidents. The state amended a couple of laws about golf carts in 2023, of which anyone driving a golf cart should be aware.

Classification and use

Under Florida law, golf carts are motor vehicles when operated on public roads. They must follow the same rules and regulations as other vehicles. However, an exception is that golf cart owners do not have to carry insurance on the vehicle.

A new 2023 law increased the ability for golf cart use on public roadways in water control districts. This is in addition to residential neighborhoods. Golf carts still cannot drive on other roadways, such as highways or interstates.

Another change in the law made it illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to operate a golf cart on public roadways unless they have a valid driver’s license or permit.

Golf cart accidents

Despite not having to carry insurance, a golf cart driver or owner could still be liable in the event of an accident. Accident responsibility depends on negligence. Negligence occurs when someone fails to exercise reasonable care, resulting in harm to another person. In a golf cart accident, negligence could involve actions such as speeding, reckless driving or failing to yield the right of way.

Florida’s comparative negligence law applies to golf cart accidents. This means that if a court finds both parties partially at fault for an accident, the liability for damages is the same as the percentage of fault the court assigned to each party.

Golf carts may be a convenient and cheap way to get around. However, accidents can occur and owners must prepare to ensure they protect themselves against any claims. This includes knowing all the laws pertaining to golf cart use on roadways.