It is confusing and scary to be a passenger during a car accident, especially if you are injured. Your situation presents a unique set of questions about who is at fault and who you should sue for damages.
Unlike other car accidents when you can easily point a finger to one driver or the other, legal liabilities when a passenger is involved is even more complicated. What you do and the legal steps you take following the accident will depend on different situations.
- Are you involved in a single car accident where the driver is at fault?
- Are you involved in a multi-car accident where one or both drivers are liable?
- Are you involved in a single or multi-car accident with the manufacturer or the government is at fault?
A car manufacturer is at fault if an accident occurs due to:
- Product defects
- Failure to create a safe product
The local government agencies are at fault if an accident occurs due to:
- Poorly maintained roadways
- Dangerous road designs
- Road defects
- Old roadways
- Failure to maintain reliable road conditions
It is recommended that you seek legal help from an attorney to determine your best option for your individual case.
As a passenger, however, you can file a suit against both parties if you find yourself in one of the last two situations.
What to Do Following a Car Accident Where You Are Injured
Call for help
Inform the local police and 911 respondents about the accident. Do your best to stay calm and don’t attempt to move. Even when it feels like you did not sustain major injuries, it is critical that you do not do anything that could complicate what minor injuries you have.
Be sensitive about your symptoms, especially when they are associated with internal injuries, concussion, and whiplash.
Share information with involved parties
Some states require you to exchange certain information with other parties involved in a car accident. Your contact information is critical, especially if you need to testify in the future. If you\’re unsure what to say and the kind of information to share, contact your lawyer for advice.
Identify the cause of the accident.
Knowing if one party\’s action or inaction caused the accident will help strengthen your case and help you successfully pursue compensation for injuries.
For example, if you were injured as a passenger when the car you are in was rear-ended, you can sue the other driver but not the one who \ was driving the bumped vehicle. Your personal injury claim should also be against the driver at fault.
Provide evidence and documents
To build a strong case, gather documents and evidence related to the accident and your injuries. Include photographs of the scene, police reports, medical records, and witness statements if any.
Hire an attorney
Working with a lawyer increases your chances of filing and claiming a successful injury claim. They can help you through the complex legal process and achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
With their help, you will have more compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and other expenses incurred following an accident. Make sure you work only with competent attorneys.
Shamon Law is happy to provide the following legal services to San Diego 92108, and the surrounding San Diego areas: Wrongful Death, Motorcycle Accidents, Dog Bites, Bicycle Accidents, Slip & Fall Accidents, Wills, Trust and Estate Planning, as well as Auto Accidents and other legal fields. Call us today at 619-458-3539 and see if we can help you!