When it comes to car accidents, most of the focus is on the health and wellbeing of the drivers involved. But passengers in car accidents get hurt, too. In fact, passengers often sustain injuries that are far worse than the drivers involved. Fortunately, the law works in your favor if you’re a passenger in a car accident.
Your rights are more favorable than a driver’s rights in one very significant way: You can file a claim regardless of who is at fault.
Depending on who is negligent, you can either file a claim against the driver of the vehicle you were in or against the driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident. If you have insurance, you can also file a claim with your insurance company under the medical coverage portion of your insurance.
But it’s up to you to take action. As a passenger, it’s important that you collect information about the car accident. Don’t rely on the drivers or other passengers – do it yourself to ensure that you have everything you need when you need it.
Steps to Protect Your Passenger Car Accident Rights
- Take pictures of the accident scene and the vehicles involved.
- Don’t talk about the accident with the other driver, the driver of your car or any other passengers. This might be difficult, but it’s in your best interest to keep mum.
- Stick to the facts when giving your statement to the police.
- Accept medical attention offered at the scene. You may not realize the severity of your injuries at that moment, and they could worsen without care. Plus, refusing care could work against you when you file a claim.
- See your doctor right away. This is critical; any delay in seeking medical care could prevent you from recovering full compensation for your injuries.
- Get a lawyer. A vehicle accident lawyer can help you get the most out of your accident claim.
- Avoid talking to insurance adjusters. Insurance adjusters are trained to get statements that help them minimize your claim. Refer them to your lawyer.
An experienced attorney who specializes in passenger accidents is your best asset after a car accident. With professional legal representation, your chance of receiving compensation and fighting for more money if your settlement offer is too low is much higher than if you filed a claim on your own.