What Are My Rights As A Passenger In A Car Accident?
Most road users don’t know their rights, let alone know what to do once they are involved in a road accident. Car accidents result in a considerable number of injuries on our roads. The accidents cause severe injuries, and a great many of them are fatal. Victims often suffer economically, emotionally, and healthwise years after the accidents have occurred. This is why it’s important to contact the great team of PI attorneys at Flagler Personal Injury Group whenever you’re involved in a car crash. However, you might want to first call the police and report the case and then contact your insurance provider and file the incident with them.
The law demands drivers to stop if an accident happens and exchange vital information like addresses and insurance details with the other party involved in the accident. If the other party fails to comply, you should report the case, typically within 24hrs after the incident. This drill is well known by drivers. However, there is a curious case that involves passengers in a car accident. Many people don’t often know their rights when caught up in this situation. Are you involved in an accident in a passenger position? Here are vital things you need to know.
Once an accident occurs, you should prioritize going for a medical checkup, even when you’re not injured. Certain injuries might start revealing after two or three days, which can jeopardize the strength of your case. Once you see a medical professional, have a follow-up to check your progress or report any emerging pain.
What Does The Law Demand After An Accident
According to the Road Traffic Act of 1988, the law dictates that if an injury or damage occurs to a third party by a car on the road, the parties must stop and exchange personal addresses and names, including those of the vehicle owners if the driver doesn’t own the vehicle. In addition to that, the driver must provide a valid certificate of insurance to the authorities. If one party fails to comply, the other should report the case to the nearest police as soon as possible.
As a passenger, you have a right to access this information, including the driver’s license information, vehicle registration numbers, and insurance information. If a driver cannot provide them, involve the police and let them deal with the situation. You can inquire with the police and find out when their report will be ready so you can have your copy.
Additionally, you have no obligation to discuss information regarding the accident with insurance adjusters. You have the right to decline their requests, as they are the representatives of at-fault drivers and hence do not have your best interest at heart. It’s your right to talk to your lawyer first before recording a statement. An attorney understands the legal options you have once you’re involved in a car accident. They’ll first review various facts encompassing the road accident and find an effective way of seeking compensation.
You Can File For A Personal Injury Claim
As a passenger, you can get compensation for the injuries resulting from the accident. You have multiple coverage options; you can demand insurance cover from each driver or use your coverage. Having multiple insurance options extends your coverage limit. For instance, if your injuries are severe and attract huge hospital bills, letting the drivers share their coverage with yours will effectively cater to the overall expenses.
The driver’s auto insurance might include medical payments, which will usually pay for the passengers’ medical expenses involved in the car accident. However, it only pays up to the specified limit of coverage irrespective of damage extent.
In most jurisdictions, an auto insurance policy often includes personal injury protection. This insurance covers medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation and pain up to a limit if an accident happens, regardless of who does the damage.
But what if the insurance company declines your injury claim? If you file for a personal injury, but the insurer refuses to comply, you can consider a lawsuit against the drivers, including their insurers, to get compensated.
Access To The Insurance Information
Both drivers are legally obligated to provide insurance documents if you get injured in an accident. These details need to be current and valid. Also, both parties and their insurance companies need to know you have suffered injuries. This is because most accidents occur, and victims get declared injury-free only to discover later that they have physical pain. Yet, no insurance details were exchanged due to wrongful assumptions.
The insurance details are sometimes given to someone who’s been declared as reasonable. For instance, you might get unconscious after an accident, making it impossible for you to exchange details. A member of the public might be compelled to get the insurance details from the driver, accompany you to the hospital, then present the details once you get to the hospital.
Claims Against Relatives
The driver of the vehicle you were driving in might be your spouse, family member, or a close relative. If that's the case, you have certain exceptions to consider. Since they're family members, you can restrain from pursuing further awards like personal injury lawsuits but only file for compensation.
When a friend or family has coverage, it's your right to demand compensation for lost wages, damages caused, or additional costs. Filing for compensation enables you to have coverage under their insurance policy. And it's a good option since you're using the insurance company and not the individual. Also, these financial burdens are often unexpected and strainful if paid out-of-pocket. Rather than making your family member or relative pay for the damages caused, you're subjecting the responsibility to their insurer. That also ensures you can get compensated and yet maintain your fruitful friendship.