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Can Passengers Get Compensated in Car Accident Lawsuits?

Can Passengers Get Compensated in Car Accident Lawsuits?

Posted By Dunnion Law Firm || 30-Sep-2016

Oftentimes, car accident disputes can be very complicated situations. The root cause of the case goes beyond “he said she said” and ventures into a formal complaint that requires factual evidence. In most car accident cases, the drivers aren’t the only victims. Passengers, pedestrians and others may experience injuries as well.

Usually, passengers join together with the driver to forge a formal complaint and seek damages. This practice may be the most common but it is not the only way for a passenger to receive compensation. In this article, we will outline some of the additional ways a passenger can seek damages for their injuries and how a Monterey personal injury attorney can help. At The Dunnion Law firm, we work closely with car accident victims to explore all of their options when seeking justice.

Third Party Claims

If you are involved in a car accident with multiple drivers, it may be in your best interest to file a third party insurance claim. All drivers are required to carry liability insurance that provides them with coverage if they are at fault during a car accident. As a passenger, you are able to sue their insurance carrier for damages.

During the insurance claims process, you will most likely deal with an insurance adjuster assigned to the case. These adjusters are trained to handle and settle car accident disputes. The adjuster will most likely try to disprove a driver's liability or counter your settlement claim with a lower offer. In these instances, consulting with a Monterey personal injury attorney can help you get through this process.

Third party insurance claims may sound appealing, but you must know that you cannot pursue a third party claim if you are related to the driver and you live with them. This would classify you as insured under the driver’s policy and you must pursue joint litigation with them.

Covering Your Medical Bills

Another option for passengers is med pay or medical coverage claims. This option allows you to pursue damages from the insurance company to cover your medical bills. Med pay claims are fairly straightforward. You do not have to prove liability in order to receive damages. Insurance companies typically pay these claims much faster than liability-based claims.

If you decide to pursue this option, you need to be aware of the restrictions. Med pay claims do not cover lost wages, pain and suffering or emotional distress. It will only cover the payment of your medical expenses. If you still wish to receive compensation for these additional injuries, then you must pursue another form of litigation.

Med pay claims also have a maximum claims amount. In many cases, the amount is just $10,000. You can only claim damages for the amount of your medical bills and nothing more.

Consult a Personal Injury Attorney

The Dunnion Law Firm is a firm committed to serving residents in the central California area that have recently been involved in a car accident. We understand how confusing the litigation process can be, so we provide expert analysis, evaluation and support during this trying time.

Our lawyers have recovered over $300 million in settlement damages and we want to help you get the justice you deserve. Contact us today to schedule a free case evaluation so that we can learn your story.
Categories: Personal Injury