If you are the passenger in a car and the driver of the vehicle you are in causes an accident, Washington state law allows you to submit a claim against the driver for the damages you suffered in the collision. Provided that the at-fault driver of the vehicle has adequate coverage on his or her auto insurance policy, your claim against that driver may seek to recover money for paying off any lost wages, covering the cost of medical bills resulting from your injuries and other types of damages resulting from the accident.
The driver or operator of any form of transportation has the obligation to drive carefully and safely, not only to prevent hitting other vehicles but also to prevent injury to his or her passengers. In the personal injury world, this obligation is known as the duty of due care. If the driver fails to use due care for his or her passengers’ safety and the passenger is then injured, then the driver may be held liable for the passenger’s damages.
If the passenger is killed in a motor vehicle accident due to the driver’s negligence, then the passenger’s heirs could potentially have the right to submit a claim for damages against the driver or operator of the vehicle. In these cases, the person who brings a claim must have been financially dependent (or dependent in some other way) upon the deceased person in one form or another.
Multiple Parties Can Be Held Responsible for Passenger’s Injuries
Passengers have rights to be compensated for their injuries in accidents when they’re not at fault. It is also important to be aware of the fact that not only may a passenger have the right to sue a third party who injures them in an accident, but they may also have the right to recover from the driver or operator of the vehicle if he or she were somehow found to be negligent in the operation of the vehicle.
Damages that may result from a motor vehicle accident can take time to present themselves, particularly for passengers. Suppose that at the scene of the accident a passenger feels no pain and thinks they have escaped the collision with no injuries. Then, several days later, the passenger may wake up with severe soreness or even intense pain. It is not unusual for injury symptoms to show up several days after an accident occurs.
If this does happen, immediately schedule an appointment with your physician to be evaluated. Medical records are a person’s physical evidence in a personal injury claim, and because of this it is extremely important to document all of the possible damages that may have resulted from a car accident as quickly as possible.
In cases where a passenger of a motor vehicle has been significantly injured and is facing a high level of damages, it may also be important to contact an experienced personal injury law firm to represent their legal interests in pursuing a personal injury claim. An experienced attorney will do everything they can to maximize the value of your case and ensure you obtain full compensation for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and all other injuries and or damages caused.