Legal Options as a Passenger After a Car Accident


Many passengers in car accidents are unaware that there are legal remedies for them to get compensated. As a passenger, the highest likelihood is that you can make your claim from the driver’s insurance policy under their PIP (personal injury protection) plan. 

If your driver was not the one at fault during the accident, you could make your claim against the other driver’s insurance policy. You may file a personal injury suit against the faulty driver, or both of them in some other cases. 

Here is a guideline that highlights different legal options for a passenger hurt in a car accident with various possible scenarios.

Where to Start

When injured in an accident, you’ll notice the drivers trying to record information on the accident; you also need to do this. Gather as much information on what exactly occurred. Pictures and videos of the crash are excellent pieces of evidence since they are hard to dispute; go here for more information. 

Collect all the contact and insurance information from your driver and any other driver that was part of the accident. Once the police arrive at the scene, it’s crucial to obtain your copy of the accident report along with any information you can get from witnesses. The data will assist you when filing your claim for the injuries suffered.

Exactly How to File the Claim

The first step is filing your claim with the driver’s insurance company. The easier way to approach the claim is through the medical payments portion or personal injury protection of their policy. Keep in mind that some states have no-fault insurance regulations. 

In such states, all drivers must have an insurance policy that covers their passengers. If the accident occurred in a no-fault state, then this is the route you should take to claim compensation.

If the accident occurred in a state that doesn’t require personal injury protection from their driver’s insurance, there’s a possibility your driver does not have the coverage. When this is the case, you will file your claim through their bodily injury coverage.

Claiming on the Other Driver's Policy

Where the other driver in the crash was responsible for the accident, you may claim against their insurance. All states have a minimum insurance amount that they must cover their vehicle for. You’ll find that they are either covered for property damage or bodily injury liability or liability or both, a requirement in many states.

Filing a claim against the other driver as an injured passenger may come with many obstacles. The first common one is finding that you’re not eligible for their coverage when the injuries you suffered fail to meet the statutes set by no-fault laws. Another common obstacle is the driver’s coverage not being sufficient to cover all your injuries’ expenses.

Furthermore, getting through things financially until you get compensation from the other driver’s insurance is quite a hassle in itself; liability and the level of responsibility in an accident may not always be clear. The complication is even worse when several drivers are involved in the accident. 

However, this does not mean getting your compensation is impossible, just complicated. The safest route to handle things when you are injured in a car accident as a passenger is hiring a car accident attorney whose experience will have them just glide through the processes and get you your compensation.

Seek Legal Guidance

What better way to learn your legal options than to seek legal guidance from a professional? Every case is different; therefore, your case facts will determine your options. Speaking to an attorney will have them creating a legal solution specifically tailored to suit your case. 

If you wish, consider hiring an Oakland car accident lawyer beyond the consultation to handle the whole claiming process with the insurance companies. If you are not satisfied by the insurance companies’ settlement offers, always remember that seeking legal redress in court is also an option.