Can Passengers Involved in a Car Accident Collect Compensation?
When most people think about car accidents, they think about the drivers of the vehicles. Passengers are sometimes overlooked. However, passengers often have very little control over what happens to them while riding in a vehicle. Someone else at-fault can cause serious damages to a passenger.
The person at fault could be the driver of the vehicle they are riding in, or it could be a third party. Under either circumstance, passengers have legal rights to assert passenger injury claims against an at-fault party who caused their injuries and damages.
Claims from Passengers in the At-Fault Driver’s Vehicle
In many cases, if the person who was driving was at fault for the accident, their insurance coverage will help pay for damages to their passengers. This coverage is usually through the driver’s bodily injury insurance, just as if you were driving the other car in the accident.
Keep in mind that even if the driver was a friend or relative, their insurance company should cover any damages that you suffered due to the accident. You should never feel bad making a claim against the driver’s insurance coverage—that is what it is for!
Claims from Passengers in Vehicles Whose Driver Was Not at Fault
When you are an injured passenger, you must assert a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company just as if you were the driver. However, you might also have some other opportunities for insurance coverage from your own insurance as well.
You should check whether filing a passenger injury claim with your own insurance company because you were a passenger is an option. This coverage can often help pay for things like medical bills and lost time away from work in many cases.
Passenger Liability for a Car Accident
In most circumstances, a passenger will not be liable for any accident. This is because they were not the one controlling the vehicle involved in the crash. However, there are situations where a passenger might be partially at fault for an accident. The most common example is a situation where a passenger is distracting the driver. Another is if a passenger is interfering with how the driver is operating the vehicle. A passenger might be partially or wholly at fault for the crash in that type of situation.
If you or a loved one was a passenger in a car accident, you should explore your legal options with an Oklahoma personal injury attorney. Call Owens Law Office for more information or to schedule an appointment.