When you get in the passenger seat of a car, you have no control over what happens on the road. If the driver of the vehicle is your friend and is at fault for the accident, should you go after him or her for your damages? As a passenger, you are in a good place because you cannot be held liable for the accident, but it can also be hard to take action against a friend. Here are several things you should know about your rights as a passenger during an accident.
You Can File An Insurance Claim
The first thing to realize is that you have the right to file a claim against one of the insurance companies involved. If your friend is responsible for causing the accident, it would be his or her insurance company that will be responsible for paying the damages. You could then file your claim with that particular insurance company.
In many cases, both drivers in an accident can be held responsible for the damages. When this happens, the liability is typically divided between them. It can be divided 50-50, or in any other ratio. When this happens, you may need to file claims with both insurance companies. Each would then be responsible for paying a certain percentage of your damages.
If you have your own auto insurance policy, you could also file a claim for medical expenses with the company that provides your insurance coverage. They are likely to pay your medical expenses from this type of accident, but medical coverage is typically limited. This means that it may not cover all the costs of your medical care.
In many cases, this is the easiest way to seek compensation for the injuries you experienced as a passenger, but this method may not always work. For example, if the parties are arguing over who is at fault, you may have trouble collecting money from one of their insurance companies.
You Should Not Feel Guilty
One of the hard parts of accidents involving friends is that it causes people to feel guilty about pursuing compensation. You should realize, though, that if you pursue a claim for your injuries, you are not going after your friend. You are actually going after your friend's insurance. He or she has insurance for situations like this, and you are not doing anything wrong if you seek compensation after injuries occur.
If you feel bad and decide not to file a claim, you may never be able to receive compensation for your injuries. If you are not sure what to do, you could always talk to your friend about the situation and explain your side.
You Could Seek Legal Help If You Cannot Resolve The Issue
Finally, you should realize that if you cannot resolve the issue through one of the insurance companies involved, you have the right to file a personal injury claim. Keep in mind that this claim must be filed against the responsible party. If your friend is responsible, this claim will be filed against him or her.
Filing a personal injury claim for a car accident can get tricky in some situations, especially when you do not fully understand who is at fault for the accident. This is why you may need a car accident lawyer. Your lawyer will help you:
- Find the facts and evidence from the car accident
- Determine who is at fault
- Decide what types of actions to take to find a remedy for the problem
- Negotiate with one of the drivers or with the driver's insurance company
- Fight for your rights in court, if necessary
It can be hard to seek compensation against a friend, but this may be the only way you will be able to recover the money you need for your injuries. To learn more, contact a car accident lawyer in your town.