Injured Passenger Settlement – What You Should Know
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Most of us spend a lot of time in our cars. We drive to work, we drive to the store, we drive to visit friends and family. Some people travel more often as a passenger, rather than the driver. There may be other people in the car as well, such as children or friends. Unfortunately, car accidents happen and those accidents can affect everyone in the car. There can be a sense of helplessness felt by passengers during a car crash. The responsibilities and rights after an accident differ whether you were the driver or a passenger. So let’s dive into the issue of passenger injuries and getting an injured passenger settlement.
If you need further assistance or have more questions about your rights as an injured passenger, get in contact with a skilled personal injury attorney.
Injured Passenger Settlement: After a Car Accident
A passenger who was injured in a car crash will likely not have a serious struggle when it comes to seeking compensation. As the passenger, you don’t have the burden of proving liability. In rare cases, a passenger may be accused of acting in a negligent way that led to an accident. However this is not common.
Immediately after a car crash, you need to seek medical attention. If an accident is very minor, you may not need medical care. However if there is serious damage to the vehicle or if you feel any pain and discomfort, you should get checked out. Even if you feel fine after a serious accident, you should visit the doctor in the days following the crash. Sometimes injuries aren’t apparent for a couple of days. When you do get medical care, make sure you save all bills, summary of injuries, and any other document pertaining to the accident injuries. As an injured passenger, follow the medical advice given to you.
In order to pursue an injured passenger settlement, you will need to show proof of your damages. In addition to your medical expenses, you can also use pay stubs showing lost wages. Provide receipts for any charge you have incurred due to your injuries. Consider keeping a journal to document how the injuries have affected your life. This is a good way to claim pain and suffering.
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What Are My Rights as a Passenger in a Car Accident?
As an passenger who is injured in a car crash, you have the right to pursue compensation for any and all damages you incurred from the accident. You have the ability to file a third-party claim against the at-fault driver. If both drivers share responsibility, you can file for an injured passenger settlement against both.
However, your state’s fault based laws will come into play. In no-fault states, you cannot place blame on either driver. If the driver of the vehicle you were traveling in carried a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy, you should be able to get a payout that way. Otherwise, you will need to file a claim with your own insurance company.
When you are ready to file a claim, it is important to have an understanding of your injuries. If you are not completely healed from the accident, it might not be wise to file a claim. You may have additional healthcare costs and if you settle too early, you cannot seek these additional damages from the at-fault party.
If negotiations with the insurance company fails, you may have to consider taking your case to arbitration. You also have the right to file an injured passenger lawsuit. Some states have laws that dictate what sort of legal action passengers can take against the driver of the car they were riding in.
There are other circumstances under which you may be able to file a claim with a separate entity. These include filing a suit against a manufacturer if a faulty vehicle part or system played a part in the accident. If you are a passenger in a car that is being driven by someone who doesn’t own the car, you may be able to file a claim against the vehicle owner. As a passenger on a commercial vehicle, you may be able to seek an injured passenger settlement from the company that owns the vehicle.
What Could Complicate an Injured Passenger Settlement?
Typically, receiving a settlement as a passenger is easier than battling with another driver over fault. However, there are things that can slow down the process of getting a payout.
For example, if the two drivers involved in the accident do fight over liability, you may not be sure who to file your claim against. You can wait until fault is determined. Or, you may have grounds to file against both drivers. Filing against both drivers might be necessary if policy limits don’t allow you to get your full compensation amount from one party. If fault is shared for the accident, the settlement payout might be split between the two responsible parties.
Also, what happens if multiple passengers are injured in a crash? If more than one person files a claim against a single driver, the total value of all of the claims may exceed the policy limits in place. This may force all of the injured passengers to settle for less money. If an agreement cannot be reached as to who gets how much of the total settlement, a lawsuit may be necessary to recover the full amount for any one passenger.
Is It Disrespectful to Sue Friends or Family?
Filing an insurance claim or taking legal steps to gain money from a friend or family member may feel wrong to many people. But, they at-fault person being someone you are close to doesn’t change the fact that you have injuries to heal from and costs to recover. Receiving an injured passenger settlement shouldn’t reflect badly on your relationship with the driver.
If the person responsible for the accident is someone that you live with, you may not be able to file a claim against them. This is generally not allowed by many insurance policies. The possibility of false claims being made in order to collect a profit is why these rules are in place. However, it is still a good idea to reach out to the insurance company and discuss the details of the accident and how you were affected.
If the person driving was a friend or family member that you don’t live with, those same rules do not apply. You may feel bad about filing a claim against this person, but it is the insurance who will pay out, not the friend or family member. That said, if the responsible person does not have insurance or their limits don’t cover your total settlement, you do have the option to take legal action. This decision is one that should be discussed with an attorney.
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Average Injured Passenger Settlement
You may be wondering, “what is the average injured passenger settlement?” With any accident or any settlement, there is not a true average that you can bank on. This is because every accident has different circumstances. The severity of the crash and injuries suffered will likely increase the settlement value. If you are in a minor fender bender, you should not expect to be paid a very large amount of money.
The best way to find out how much your injured passenger settlement may be worth is to speak with a personal injury attorney. They will take into consideration the same factors that an insurance company will. Those factors likely include:
- Medical and healthcare costs (these may be ongoing)
- Property damage to your personal items
- Lost income (past and/or future)
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
Because injuries, cost of recovery, and the way that an accident affects you can vary, there is no easy price to put on any car accident. A small accident may get you a couple thousand dollars. A more serious one may settle for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Discuss your case with an attorney. They may be able to tell you the verdicts and settlements they have seen for cases that are similar to yours.
Rideshare Injured Passenger Settlement
If you are injured in an accident while riding in an Uber or Lyft car, you may not know what your rights are. In most cases, the rideshare company will cover your settlement. The amount that you can receive will likely vary based on the circumstances of the crash and who was found to be liable. Companies such as Uber hold high coverage limits, so receiving a payout is more certain than if you had to file a claim against an individual driver.
Injured Passenger Settlement Examples
If you are wondering what other injured passenger settlements have looked like, there are many examples available. However, it is important to remember that each accident is different and the verdict in one lawsuit may be different than the settlement agreed on for a similar accident.
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$28,000 Injured Passenger Settlement
A passenger was injured in a rear-end crash. He suffered from chronic back pain and seeked treatment from a chiropractor for several months. When the pain did not subside, he had and MRI done. The MRI showed that he had a herniated disc that was pinching a nerve. Once he was able to fully heal, the insurance company offered $28,000.
$40,000 Injured Passenger Settlement
A young woman struck another vehicle in a head-on collision, injuring her friend that was riding in the passenger seat. The passenger was transferred to a hospital where it was determined that she had multiple rib fractures. Luckily, there was no damage to her organs and her ribs were able to heal without surgery. The driver was found to be at fault, as she was texting and driving at the time of the accident. She had $25,000 in bodily injury coverage and an additional $15,000 was covered by uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.
$300,000 Injured Passenger Settlement
A man was traveling with his friend when they turned into a parking lot. As they took a left turn, crossing the other lane, a pickup truck t-boned the turning car. The driver of the pickup truck was driving at excessive speeds and had been unable to brake in time. The passenger suffered from lacerations to the face, a broken arm, and a fractured hip. The insurance company of the at-fault driver did not want to offer a fair settlement until the victim retained the services of an attorney. An agreement to pursue arbitration was made and it was determined that the pickup truck driver was at fault and required to pay the settlement.
$800,000 Injured Passenger Settlement
A passenger suffered serious injuries to his arm, hand, and shoulder when the driver lost control of the car, colliding with a parked vehicle. His injuries required surgery and he spent a couple of days in the hospital. It was determined that the driver was under the influence of drugs at the time of the accident. The claim was settled quickly with the introduction of the toxicology report.
Passenger Car Accident Settlement Calculator
As previously stated, the best way to get an accurate idea of what your injured passenger settlement may look like is to speak with an attorney. They will review the facts of your case and tell you if you are being offered a fair settlement. But, if you are interested in a rough estimate to move forward with, you can use our car accident settlement calculator.
Get Help With Your Injured Passenger Settlement
If you are seeking a payout after an accident, you should consider speaking with a skilled attorney. They will be able to help you get the highest compensation and make sure that the insurance companies are not trying to take advantage of you. Get the money that you deserve, the money that you need to cover your medical expenses and lost income. Reach out today for a risk free consultation and let’s get you connected with a lawyer in your area.
As a passenger, you have a few options when it comes to whom you are able to sue. If you are injured as a passenger making a third party claim depends on whom the negligent driver was. First you must determine the driver that was found at fault for the accident and then take it from there. You can file a claim against the insurance policy of the driver of the car you were in, or the insurance policy of the opposing driver. If you have suffered injuries in a car accident as a passenger, you can file a claim or personal injury lawsuit to collect compensation for your injuries and damages. Just like drivers, you can hold the at-fault driver liable for your injuries. You may be able to recover compensation from the driver of another vehicle that caused the accident, the driver of their vehicle if they caused the accident, and even both drivers if they share fault for the crash.
Yes. In the unfortunate event you become involved in collision as a passenger, you will likely imagine that your injuries are the responsibility solely of the driver of the car you were riding in, or the other driver involved. However, it is not always the drivers’ responsibility and there are some cases where the traveler can actually be blamed or partially blamed for causing the accident. There are instances where the passenger may be arguing or for whatever reason decides to grab the steering wheel and in this situation the passenger technically becomes the driver since the vehicle is still in motion and can be found at fault.
The good thing about being a passenger is you are less likely to be found at fault and you have a right to sue the faulted driver. There can be complications when it comes to insurance for instance, if the driver of the vehicle in doesn’t have insurance you are not able to sue because you have no policy to go after. But if the other driver has caused the accident and they DO have insurance, you are able to file a claim against their policy.
When it comes to calculating how much your passenger settlement may be, it’s easiest to simply enter in some basic information regarding your injury into our personal injury settlement calculator. There is a generic formula that is frequently used to determine an estimated value and that formula involves adding up the following items:
- Medical bills from the injuries cause by the accident
- Expected future medical expenses as a result from the injuries
- Wages lost from the inability to work due to injuries
After these expenses are added, a multiplier is applied to the total expenses and that number typically ranges 1-5 in regards to pain and suffering. On the scale, 1 represents minimal pain with a quick recovery and no lingering injuries. And 5 represents maximum pain with ongoing injury related issues.
It’s hard to know exactly what steps to follow after an accident and even more confusing if you are injured as a passenger in a car accident. Thankfully, as a passenger you have multiple options in order to be compensated for your injuries. If the driver of the car you were the passenger in and that driver is deemed to be at fault, you can file a claim against that driver. If the other driver is faulted for the accident and you sustain injuries as a passenger, you can file a claim against the other driver’s insurance policy. Filing a claim is simple especially with the help of an attorney. Be sure to have a medical professional examine you and seek treatment shortly after the accident. As a passenger, your medical expenses are paid for by the driver’s medical portion of their coverage policy.
This will all depend on what type of insurance coverage plan you have. You already know that when you are driving your own vehicle and you get injured you will be covered by your own protection policy. So, who will cover your personal injuries in the event you are injured as a passenger? It’s important to know that in the unfortunate event you become injured as a passenger, you may be covered by multiple insurance policies including your own, the driver of the car you are riding in, and/or the opposing driver. If you become injured as a passenger in another vehicle, in this case it is the faulted drivers insurance company that is responsible for covering your damages. In most states, you are obligated to have personal injury liability through your insurance plan however, depending on what policy you have the coverage might not be enough to cover all of your medical expenses and other expenses that come along with personal injuries. If you have opted to have full coverage through your insurance company, it will cover the damages done to the third parties.
On the off chance that you sustain any type of injury, including whiplash from being a passenger in a collision, you reserve the option to claim your whiplash injury and seek compensation for your damages. Weather or not the driver of your vehicle was found at fault, or the opposing driver was found at fault, you are able to sue Driver A, Driver B or both depending on if both were partially at fault. Due to the negligence of the driver(s) you are able to sue for the whiplashed caused by the accident.
If you become injured in a car accident as a passenger you have privileges to sue too. In the unfortunate chance that you were a traveler in a vehicle that was associated with an accident and you endured injuries because of that mishap, you can seek compensation for your medical expenses, missed wages from being unable to work, pain and suffering and more. So, whom you can sue and what happens if the driver of the vehicle you were the traveler in was found to blame? You have the right to sue the other driver that was at fault for the accident for these damages. If your driver of the vehicle you were in is found at fault, you can sue them for damages as well. Further, in the event that the two drivers are similarly to blame, you can sue the two drivers for the damages.
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