It’s important to make sure that cars out on the road in the state of Florida are in good, driveable condition. When vehicles aren’t roadworthy, car accidents can happen and cause serious injuries.
One way to keep an eye on a vehicle’s roadworthiness is by having cars inspected from time to time. Florida’s car inspection laws aren’t particularly strict. However, the laws are designed to target vehicles that are most likely to be defective, dangerous, or simply unsafe to drive.
Here, our Miami personal injury lawyers provide the information you need about Florida’s car inspection laws. If you have further questions, don’t hesitate to contact our law office in Miami-Dade County to speak with our legal team at no cost.
- 1 When Does the State of Florida Require Vehicle Safety Inspections?
- 2 What Happens During a Florida Vehicle Safety Inspection?
- 3 Why Might a Vehicle Fail an Inspection in the State of Florida?
- 4 What Should Drivers Bring to a Car Inspection in Florida?
- 5 How Much Do Car Inspections Cost in the State of Florida?
- 6 Who Can Perform a Car Inspection in Florida?
- 7 Will Florida Expand its Vehicle Testing Requirements?
- 8 What Should You Do if You Get into a Crash with an Untested Car?
- 9 Need More Information About the Florida Car Inspection Laws? Contact Our Miami Law Firm Today
When Does the State of Florida Require Vehicle Safety Inspections?
Many jurisdictions in the United States require drivers to put their vehicles through an annual safety inspection. These tests usually occur around the same time the motorist renews their registration.
Florida residents do not need to put their vehicles through a yearly safety test. They also do not have to go through any emissions inspections.
There are only two situations under which a motor vehicle in Florida must undergo any form of state testing. They are:
- When a motorist buys a new car in another state, and
- When a motorist buys a pre-owned vehicle in the state of Florida
In these scenarios, drivers must usually get their cars tested before they can take them out onto a public street or highway.
What Happens During a Florida Vehicle Safety Inspection?
The state of Florida once required cars to undergo comprehensive testing before drivers could use them on public roadways. More recently, though, legislators in Tallahassee have relaxed these inspection requirements.
Nowadays, the state’s vehicle inspection program does not review a car’s roadworthiness. Instead, Florida law requires only VIN inspections.
During a VIN inspection, the state’s tester cross-checks the car’s details against its title and lien to make sure that the motorist (or another party) did not steal it.
Why Might a Vehicle Fail an Inspection in the State of Florida?
Since state-required testing in Florida does not evaluate the condition of a vehicle, it is not possible to fail an inspection because of a broken light, faulty brakes, or a worn tire.
Generally speaking, a car can only fail a state inspection in Florida if there is a problem with its VIN. If, for instance, the serial number on the driver-side door does not match the one on the windshield, the vehicle will likely fail its inspection.
What Should Drivers Bring to a Car Inspection in Florida?
There are a few essential documents that residents of Miami should bring with them when getting a vehicle inspected in the state of Florida. Those documents are:
- Photo ID: A Florida driver’s license is usually the best option.
- Proof of Ownership: Drivers can present their certificate of title in paper or electronic form.
- Proof of Insurance: The policy must be valid and meet all of the state’s minimum coverage requirements.
It is not at all uncommon for inspectors to turn away motorists who do not have these documents on their person at the time of their test.
How Much Do Car Inspections Cost in the State of Florida?
The state of Florida does not have a set fee for car inspections. As such, a tester is free to charge as much or as little as they want for the service.
Some providers offer state inspections for free to their customers. Others can charge as much as $150.
Given the large discrepancy in pricing, motorists should always call ahead to confirm the fee before taking their vehicle to an inspection site.
Who Can Perform a Car Inspection in Florida?
Not all mechanics or automotive technicians can perform a car inspection in Florida. Anyone who wishes to offer this service must first get certified by the state.
Because of this certification requirement, motorists should always ask to see a tester’s credentials before booking an appointment.
Drivers who do not wish to take their car to a mechanic for inspection can instead bring it to their local police station. The state of Florida gives local police departments the authority to conduct state testing.
Will Florida Expand its Vehicle Testing Requirements?
In most states, vehicle testing is a thorough process. Inspectors examine just about all of the most critical components of the car, such as:
- The steering
- The tires
- The mirrors
- The brakes
- The engine
- The lights
- The exhaust system
- The turn signals, and
- The windshield wipers
Vehicles registered in other states also have to undergo regular emissions testing to improve the air quality in the region.
The fact that other jurisdictions require vehicle inspections like these may cause some people to wonder if Florida is likely to expand its testing rules as well. At the moment, however, such an expansion seems unlikely.
Legislators in Tallahassee periodically suggest passing more stringent car inspection laws to keep Florida residents safe on the road. However, their efforts almost always receive a lot of pushback from the public and other lawmakers.
What Should You Do if You Get into a Crash with an Untested Car?
In the state of Florida, it is unlawful for a driver to operate a motor vehicle that they have not had inspected and registered. Nevertheless, countless motorists do just that every day.
So, what should you do if you get hit by a motorist in an untested vehicle? At Lavent Law, PA, we recommend taking the following steps after your car accident:
Seek Immediate Medical Treatment (If Needed)
In the immediate aftermath of any road-traffic collision, your health ought to be your top priority. Take a few minutes to check your body for signs of injury – like lacerations or protrusions. If you notice anything that requires immediate medical care, reach for your cell phone, dial 911, and request a paramedic as soon as possible.
If you cannot reach your phone, or your injuries make it difficult for you to request an ambulance, try to ask a passerby to call for you. The quicker a call goes in, the quicker you will receive the treatment you need.
Call Your Auto Insurance Company
Once you have received the medical treatment you require, you must next contact your car insurance provider to let them know about your accident. While speaking to their representative, you should attempt to avoid giving them any unnecessary information. You only need to let them know:
- That you got into an accident
- Where the collision occurred, and
- When the crash happened
Should you provide them with any extraneous information, they may try to use it against you if you make a claim.
Contact the Local Police Department
As soon as you get off the phone with your auto insurer, you should reach out to the local police department to tell them that an accident happened. They will most likely send an officer to the scene to learn more about the collision and compile a comprehensive crash report.
When the police officer arrives, they may ask you to provide them with an oral statement about the collision. During your conversation, you should try to stick to the facts of the situation and avoid making any guesses about the other driver’s actions or intentions.
Should you choose to file a personal injury lawsuit against the other party, the police officer’s crash report may prove to be a key piece of evidence.
Gather Evidence from the Accident Scene
Before you leave the scene of your collision, you should take some time to gather additional evidence you might need to use during a personal injury lawsuit. You can start by taking plenty of pictures of the involved vehicles as well as the surrounding environment. These photos can help to provide a judge and jury with a clearer understanding of your crash.
Your evidence gathering activities should not end there, however. You can also take a few minutes to ask anyone who witnessed the accident to give you their contact information. You might need to call on them again later.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Once you have finished gathering evidence, your next move should be to call a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer, like those at Lavent Law, PA.
Your attorney will be able to help you fight for compensation for your auto accident damages by:
- Reviewing the details of your accident and assessing your damages
- Handling the administrative side of the legal process
- Investigating the cause of your car accident
- Providing you with sound legal advice as needed
- Walking you through your potential legal options
- Giving you honest answers to your legal questions
- Searching for relevant evidence to support your claims
- Negotiating a settlement deal with the defendant’s insurer
- Representing you in court, if required
Would you like to have an experienced attorney from Lavent Law, PA, help you fight for the compensation you deserve? If so, please give us a call as soon as possible. We know how to win cases like yours, and we are ready to stand up for you.
Need More Information About the Florida Car Inspection Laws? Contact Our Miami Law Firm Today
Whether you require more details about the Florida car inspection laws or want an experienced attorney to help you fight for compensation after an accident with an unregistered vehicle, you can always rely on Lavent Law, PA. Our team has been practicing law in the Sunshine State for years, and we would be happy to provide you with the assistance you need. Contact us today to set up a free consultation at our law office in Miami.