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Personal Injury Blog

What Should an Injured Passenger Do if Injured in an Auto Accident?

Friday, August 17, 2018

Auto accidents are traumatic for anyone involved. However, there is no denying that injured drivers have a certain amount of rights towards compensation for their injuries and we all know it. However, what if there injured passengers? Not every driver that gets into an accident is alone in the car, and if you were riding with friends or family during an accident, you might wonder if you have any right to compensation, especially since you had no part in the accident itself. However, rest assured that as an injured passenger, you also have certain rights to compensation to cover any resulting injuries.

Seeking Compensation From the Driver's Insurance

As an injured passenger, your first task - after healing, of course - is to determine the fault of the accident. We certainly don't want to pursue a claim against the driver of the car we were in because of any personal feelings for the driver, but it may be necessary. However, it is important to remember that you are not taking money straight out of their pocket, but rather your injuries will be covered by their insurance company if they were at fault. As an injured passenger, you have a legal right to file a claim with their insurance for your injuries. This claim will cover your medical expenses, any lost wages accrued due to healing, as well as a certain amount for pain and suffering.

Even if the driver of your car was at fault, you also still have the right to file a claim with the other driver's car insurance as well. This can be necessary because often auto insurance does not let passengers related to the driver file as they are seen as part of the insurance. However, you cannot collect from both insurance providers to an amount that exceeds the total value of the claim.

Using the Passenger's Policy

As an injured passenger with your own auto insurance policy, you may be able to get coverage for your medical expenses from your own policy. This coverage is not based on any liability and does not require the passenger to be at fault. However, using this method, typically pain, and suffering or lost wages are typically not covered. Yet, if there are any expenses that are related to your medical expenses, then your own auto insurance will typically cover it.

If you collect a portion from your own auto insurance and then later receive compensation from another driver's insurance, you may find a certain amount will be deducted from the liability settlement. Using your own auto insurance policy is a great option is you need coverage for your medical bills quickly but expect a certain amount of coverage later from a larger settlement.

Need Help?

With all the options above available to you, it actually makes getting compensation for an injured passenger more complex than for either of the drivers. Which option do you pick to suit your unique needs? It can be really difficult to figure out. If you are an injured passenger and need compensation for your medical bills now or simply want to make the most out of the coverage options you do have, contact us today. Don't let all the options you have available to you overwhelm you with choice, the right auto accident attorney can help you sort out which options are right for your unique needs.

If you were a passenger who was in an auto accident, contact us today. Let the Law Office of Freeman and Freeman help you get compensation for your accident so you can pay your medical bills now when you need to.

Studies Find Side Curtain Airbags Can Prevent Injuries in Rollover Accidents

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Side curtain airbag systems are very beneficial in helping reduce the risk of injuries to passengers in side-impact accidents. New studies, however, find that these systems also do a very good job of protecting occupants from injuries in the most devastating types of accidents – vehicle rollovers.

According to studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, side airbags can reduce the risk of front seat fatalities in rollover accidents by as much as 41%. According to estimates by the federal agency, as many as 30% of all 2014 model year automobiles now come with side curtain airbag systems. These systems are expected to become standard features on more automobiles very soon. There are different types of side airbags available. However, approximately 83% of 2014 model automobiles come with curtain plus torso airbags.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, curtain plus torso airbag systems reduce the risk of front seat occupant death by as much as 31%, while combination head/torso airbags reduce the risk of fatality by as much as 25%. Curtain airbags on their own reduce risks by 16%, while torso airbags reduce the risk by 8%.

Side impact accidents, like broadsiding accidents, have a very high risk of injury because occupants sitting at the sides typically have very little protection from serious injuries. In a frontal impact or head-on accident, a combination of airbags and seatbelts can help reduce injury risks. However, an occupant may be at a high risk of serious injuries or fatalities in side impact accidents even when he's wearing a seatbelt.

Auto technologies like side airbag systems have played a major role in helping reduce the number of people killed in accidents in recent years.


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