When people discuss car accidents, they always talk about the driver. What the driver did, what they’re entitled to and other driver rights. However, the drivers are rarely the only person involved. In many cases, there’s another person that was put in just as much danger—the passenger.
So what about the passenger rights? Any person sitting shotgun during an accident deserves compensation for injuries.
You deserve to know what you’re entitled to and what rights you have. That’s why this article from Sandel Law Firm will tell you everything you need to know! Read the rest of this article for more information about passenger rights!
Passenger Law: Legal Definition
First, let’s discuss the definition of “passenger.” What do we mean when we use the word? In this case, a passenger is a rider on a train, bus, taxi, airline, ship or automobile. (As well as a person on any other carrier commonly transporting people).
Legally, a passenger is owed a significant duty of care by the carrier. (Whether that is an automobile or anything else.) Depending on whether the passenger paid for the ride, they may have to prove negligence to recover damages when injured.
Can You Sue If You Were a Passenger in a Car Accident?
To put it simply, a passenger involved in a car accident absolutely has the right to sue. And there are multiple ways to do so. Two of the best options for passengers to pursue compensation for injuries is through a lawsuit or personal injury claim. Unfortunately, it’s not always a simple process and pursuing compensation can be an ordeal.
Passenger rights dictate that a passenger could seek compensation from the other vehicle’s driver. (If they are at fault.) However, if the driver of the passenger’s vehicle is at fault, legal action may be more difficult.
In many cases, the passenger knows the driver well. (Friend, co-worker, family member, etc.) And they may feel uncomfortable with pursuing any kind of legal action against the driver. However, from a professional and legal standpoint, you deserve compensation in any case.
*Depending on the circumstances, some passengers can seek compensation from the driver’s employer. (Assuming the passenger was riding in a bus, taxicab or rideshare service.)
What are The Injured Passenger’s Rights to Compensation?
You are entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain, and lost wages as a passenger in an accident. That much is clear. But how should you go about it? According to your passenger rights, you can seek your compensation through means such as:
Third-Party Insurance Claims
A third-party claim can be filed by someone other than the policyholder or the insurance company. You can file a third-party claim when you are involved in an accident someone else caused. (You can file a third-party claim against the other driver or the driver of your vehicle.)
Medical Payments Coverage (MedPay)
Medical payments coverage is an add-on to an auto insurance policy. It can cover expenses related to auto accidents for you, passengers in your vehicle and any pedestrians you may injure. You may sometimes receive compensation from the driver’s MedPay coverage.
Be sure to clarify if that’s possible with the driver.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Policies
A lot of the time, you can obtain compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. But what if the driver lacks insurance or enough to cover everything? All hope is not lost. You can still have your costs covered with uninsured or underinsured motorist policies.
Your own Insurance Claims
Then, there’s your insurance. Many people don’t think about filing through their insurance when they aren’t driving. However, it’s a very viable option. As we mentioned, you may have Medpay coverage. But there’s also personal injury protection (PIP).
We highly recommend having both to ensure you have enough support to cover your medical and pain and suffering costs.
If you’re in any sort of car accident, make sure that you have the help you need! At Sandel Law Firm, we can assist you and help pursue your compensation through a personal injury claim or lawsuit. (Whether you’re a passenger or a driver.) With a free consultation, you can get started today.
So don’t wait.