I Was a Passenger in a Car Accident, What Are My Rights and Options?
If you suffered injuries in a car accident as a passenger through no fault of your own, you have the right to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain, suffering and more. Your options for seeking this compensation will depend on the facts of your case. Here, we look at the potential options in three common scenarios.
The Driver of Another Car Caused the Accident
If the driver of another car caused the crash through his or her negligence, then you should be able to pursue compensation from that driver. For example, the driver may have been distracted while driving or driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs at the time of the crash.
Typically, you would file a claim that seeks a recovery of funds through that driver’s liability insurance coverage. Most states require drivers to carry certain minimum amounts of liability coverage. If the driver has the required insurance, it should cover your damages up to the policy’s limits.
In some situations, you can file a claim against another party as well. For instance, if the driver was working when the crash occurred, the driver’s employer could potentially be liable. Also, many states allow claims against bars, stores, restaurants and social hosts who provide alcohol to a minor or intoxicated driver who, in turn, causes a crash.
The Driver of Your Car Caused the Accident
Unfortunately, the person who drove your car may have acted carelessly or recklessly and caused the crash that injured you. In fact, the accident may have involved no other cars. For example, the driver may have struck a tree or run off the road. If this occurs, your options are not much different than if you were hit by the driver of another car. You should be able to pursue compensation through your driver’s liability insurance.
An Underinsured or Uninsured Driver Caused the Accident
If another driver hit the car that you rode in as a passenger, then the driver of your car may have suffered injuries as well. Both of you may have a claim against the other driver – and the funds available through that driver’s insurance coverage may quickly dry up.
However, if the driver of your car has underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage, you may be able to file a claim through that policy. Additionally, if the other driver had no insurance at all – you would be surprised at how many of these drivers are on the road – then you could possibly pursue compensation through your driver’s uninsured motorist (UM) policy.
An Experienced Auto Accident Attorney Can Review Your Case Today
As you can see, you have rights as a passenger injured in a car accident. You also may have many options when it comes to seeking compensation for your losses. As you move forward after a crash, it will be important for you to get help from an experienced car accident lawyer who will work hard to identify all sources of compensation available to you and pursue the maximum amount in your case.
To learn more about your rights and options, contact Lindner Law LLC., and allow us to put more than four decades of experience to work for you. We can provide a thorough review of your case in a free, no-pressure, no-obligation consultation.