What Would Happen If I Was Hurt in a Missouri Auto Accident as a Passenger?
Being in a car accident as a passenger can be a horrifying experience. One moment everything is fine, and the next you are disoriented, checking to make sure that you have not been harmed.
If you have ever had this experience, then you are aware that the last thing on a person’s mind is “what to do for insurance”. However, as many of us have lived through this harrowing experience–and represented others who have as well–we can share some key information to remember in the event that you find yourself in an accident as a car passenger.
When you’re the passenger of a car accident, you can do one of three things:
- File a claim with the other driver’s insurance company
- File a claim with the driver of the vehicle you were in
- File a claim with your insurance
File a claim with the other driver’s company.
This is called a third-party injury claim. Usually in an accident where you are a passenger, filing a claim against the other driver is the first line of defense. Most states require drivers to have a minimum amount of car insurance.
The insurance will include two types of coverages–bodily injury liability (BI) and property damage liability (PD). Bodily injury liability will cover medical expenses; and property liability damage will cover the cost of property damages including the passenger’s property as well.
Questions arise when a driver’s minimum amount isn’t enough to cover the passenger’s expenses. Additionally, another issue arises when an insurance company cannot determine who is at fault. You may need a lawyer to help with filing a claim to get a settlement.
File a claim with your insurance company
This might be an effective option if neither driver carries insurance or may have exhausted the limit in covering damages. If you have PIP or MedPay, your insurance company may cover medical expenses, as long as the expenses are not exceptionally high.
If you do not have PIP or MedPay, and neither driver has insurance, you may be able to file a claim under uninsured motorist insurance.
File a claim with the driver’s insurance company
The difficulty of this is that you will likely have a relationship with the person who drove the vehicle you were in as a passenger. This could be a friend, family member, or confidante.
And things can get uncomfortable when seeking damages from someone who you care about. However, it may help to think of the situation as seeking damages from an insurance company rather than the individual person.
You should still take these steps as well.
If you are in an accident as a passenger, you should be sure to take necessary action in preparation for the possibility of taking action against another party:
- Call 911.
- File a police report.
- Speak with an eyewitness and gather contact information.
- Document with photographs.
- Seek medical help.
Contact us today to speak with a St. Louis auto accident lawyer.
You deserve to be remunerated for damages incurred as a passenger of a car accident. An auto accident lawyer can help you build the case you need to be compensated for any pain and suffering, injury, and/or repairs.
Contact Bruntrager & Billings, P.C. today for a free consultation–at 314-646-0066 or through our online contact form.