Can I collect damages from a wrongful death lawsuit if the defendant is not insured?
It depends upon whether the defendant has other assets from which a judgment might be satisfied. The first rule of litigation is, don't sue people who don't have any money.
I am not licensed to practice law in Florida so the foregoing should not be taken as legal advice, but simply as information based on general principles of law which is intended to educate. If you need legal advice, please consult a lawyer who holds Florida licensure.
As the previous response points out, the ability to collect damages hinges on whether or not there are assets to collect from. Where there is insurance, to that question is clear...at least to the extent of coverage. Where there is no insurance, more analysis is required to determine whether or not there are assets that would be subject to collection. Because each state offers various exemptions to protect certain property and has different rules about how jointly held property is treated and such, this isn't a simple yes/no question. However, fortunately most personal injury attorneys offer free initial consultations. Why not take advantage of that by setting up a consultation and explaining the circumstances to a local attorney who is familiar with the Florida exemptions and treatment of joint property and such to determine whether or not there might be assets on which you could collect?
Lawsuit / Dispute Attorney
Yes, get a lawyer.
You might find my Legal Guide helpful, "Successful Start for a Personal Injury Lawsuit"
Because this matter is so important you should really get a lawyer.
You might find my Legal Guide helpful "How to Choose A Lawyer For You"
You might find my Legal Guide helpful " What Do I Tell My Lawyer"
No one can know what the record is in the case because online we cannot see your documents. You need a lawyer. Check with a lawyer in your locale to discuss more of the details.
Good luck to you.
NOTE: This answer is made available by the lawyer for educational purposes only. By using or participating in this site you understand that there is no attorney client privilege between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney with whom you have established an attorney client relationship and all the privileges that relationship provides. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific factual or legal circumstance described in the question.
International Law Attorney
The answer is YES unless the defendant has no assets at all and there is always a risk they may declare bankruptcy too. But with a possible wrongful death case you will find many lawyers eager to discuss the case with you. So get yourself to a Florida attorney ASAP.