Passengers Are Entitled to Damages After a Car Accident
Passengers account for a significant portion of car accident fatalities and injuries every year. This is perhaps because they are normally caught unawares in most accidents, in contrast to drivers, who sometimes have a few milliseconds to ‘prepare’ themselves or to brace themselves for oncoming collisions. When injured in an accident, there are various steps that you as passenger should take to get compensation for hospital bills and other damages. The first and most important step is to seek the advice of an experienced car accident attorney.
As a passenger who has sustained injuries in an accident, you have an easier case to prove than the driver, that you are not liable for the damages resulting from the accident. However, just like any other personal injury claim, you should still be able to prove who is liable for the accident and that the damages were directly caused by the accident.
If the car accident involved two cars, one of the car drivers is without a doubt liable. It is nearly impossible to have an accident involving two cars without one of the drivers being found negligent in one way or another. On the other hand, if the car accident just involved one car (for example the driver hitting a tree) then the car driver is liable. If the driver collides with an object other than a vehicle, then he/she did most likely something which amounts to negligence. However, there are some exceptions – for instance, a deer runs onto the road out of nowhere and the driver cannot possibly avoid hitting it.
Filing the claim
A passenger injury claim is similar to all other car accident claims, the only difference being that you, the passenger, is the claimant suing the driver(s).
If more than one driver was found to be at fault you would need to get the insurance information of each drivers, and file claims with their respective insurance company. Your car accident attorney can easily do this for you. If only one of the drivers is found to be at fault, then you will file a claim only against the insurance company of the driver found solely to be at fault. In most cases, passenger injury claims are easily settled, but there are various instances that these cases can be a bit difficult to settle. In such cases, you can rely on the experience of your car accident attorney to win you the case.
Multiple passenger injury claims
In cases where multiple passengers sustain damages in a crash and sue the driver, the value of compensation you could get could be limited to the total value of the at-fault driver’s injury coverage. Depending on the circumstances, each claimant usually gets a portion of the total insurance policy coverage.
Being involved in a car accident can be a difficult and confusing experience. Your first obligation is to get medical treatment. Afterward, you ought to discuss your legal options with a car accident attorney.
If you have been injured in a car accident as a passenger, you might be entitled to compensation for all resulting damages. For your claim to be successful, it is crucial to discuss the circumstances of your accident with an experienced car accident attorney who can assist you in determining which claims to file and also protect your legal rights.