If you suffered motor vehicle crash injuries as a passenger in a car, you may be able to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit for damages in the collision. Regardless of who caused the car accident—even if the driver of the vehicle in which you were riding was at fault—you might be able to pursue damages. If you receive compensation, it could cover your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages.
To pursue financial awards, you will likely file an insurance claim based on the at-fault party’s auto liability insurance policy. In some cases, you can file a claim based on the policy of the driver transporting you and the driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident. A personal injury attorney can explain your legal options and walk you through the process.
Focus on Your Health and Well-Being After a Car Accident
If you experienced a car accident as a passenger or a driver, you should seek immediate medical attention–even if you believe you only sustained minor injuries. Some injuries do not display symptoms until months or years after the crash.
Your insurance claim may pay for the ambulance ride to the hospital, emergency department visit, and any treatment you receive. If you require hospital care, you can also submit the bills for your medical care with your insurance claim.
Once your injuries stabilize, you can reach out to a Birmingham car accident lawyer to review your case’s details.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
Who Can You Hold Liable for a Car Accident as an Injured Passenger?
Several parties could be responsible for covering your medical costs if you suffered bodily injuries and other damages as a passenger in an auto collision. Depending on the situation, you could file an insurance claim or lawsuit against:
- The person driving the passenger vehicle: If someone else caused an accident while driving your vehicle, and you were a passenger at the time of the crash, you might be able to file a claim against the driver if they caused the accident.
- The driver of another vehicle involved in the accident: If another driver hit the vehicle you were riding in as a passenger and injured you, you could seek compensation from them.
- The owners of the vehicles involved in the accident: Not everyone on the road owns the vehicle they are driving. If the driver does not own the vehicle that hit the vehicle you were in, you could file a claim against the liability insurance of the vehicle’s owner.
- The driver’s employer if the person who caused the accident was on the clock and driving a work vehicle when the accident occurred
- Other road users, such as a motorcyclist, bicyclist, or pedestrian
You also might be able to file a claim against your auto insurance policy, particularly if you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) or a personal injury protection (PIP) policy. Identifying which party or parties should pay for your passenger injury claim can be challenging. Our car accident attorneys can figure this out for you while you focus on healing from the accident.
Providing Evidence for Your Insurance Claim
Determining liability and proving damages involve complex legal statutes. We recommend working closely with an experienced car accident attorney who can help you prove negligence and liability when filing your insurance claim.
When more than one party contributed to the accident, interpreting these laws may prove challenging without the help of legal representation. When this occurs, the liable parties may share the burden of covering the passenger’s damages under the state’s comparative fault law, if it has one.
Your attorney may collect various kinds of evidence to support your claim, including:
- The police report about the accident
- Eyewitness testimony
- Video footage of the accident or photographs of the scene
- Physical evidence to prove negligence and fault
- Your medical records detailing your injuries and treatment
- Receipts or other documentation of any damaged property
- Medical bills and related receipts
- Additional documentation related to your damages
In some states, laws may prohibit you from filing a claim or bringing a lawsuit against any of your family members or anyone you live with. An experienced local attorney can help you navigate state legal restrictions to ensure the handling of your case is correct.
Negotiating an Insurance Settlement
If you were injured in a car accident as a passenger, you have the right to recover the same losses as the driver you traveled with or the other driver, depending on who bears responsibility for the accident. Compensation from an insurer may extend to:
- Medical treatment
- Lost income
- Personal property damage
- Pain and suffering
Your attorney may recover fair compensation without taking the case to trial. They may file an insurance claim and present the case they build to support the claim. Settlement negotiations may enable both parties to reach a fair agreement.
If they fail to offer you a fair settlement agreement, your attorney may file a personal injury lawsuit and take the case to court, if necessary. Consulting with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible may help you avoid missing key deadlines to file a lawsuit. Many states have statutes of limitations that dictate the deadline accident victims have to file a suit.
Louisiana, for example, allows you to file a personal injury lawsuit up to one year after the date of the accident. If you wait too long, you may lose your right to take further legal action, even if your injuries result in long-term medical conditions.
Seek Legal Counsel if You Were Injured in a Car Accident as a Passenger
You should not have to pay out of pocket for the injuries and damages you sustained because of someone else’s—or multiple parties’—negligence.
An attorney from the Morris Bart law firm can help you pursue compensation based on the facts of your case. We may be able to help you seek damages as a passenger in cases that include:
- Car accidents
- Large truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Driving under the influence (DUI) accidents
- Driving while intoxicated (DWI) accidents
- The driver of your vehicle caused the accident
- The driver of another vehicle caused the accident
There may also be other types of vehicle accidents for which you may seek compensation.
Call Us Today for a Free Consultation
Our team handles motor vehicle accident cases involving injured passengers in car accidents across the Gulf Coast and the South, representing clients in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas. We can advise you on what to do if you suffered injuries in a car accident as a passenger and help you figure out your next steps.
Call the Morris Bart law firm for a free consultation to see how a car accident lawyer can evaluate your case and help you understand and protect your rights and interests.
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