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As a passenger, do you have legal rights after a crash?

Hopping into a vehicle with another person driving is not an uncommon event. You may catch rides with friends, family, a friend of a friend, or even a rideshare or taxi. You may even enjoy riding as a passenger rather than driving yourself because the activity can be nerve-wracking. Of course, as a passenger, you do not have control over the actions of the person driving, the vehicle or those traveling around you.

You may not consider yourself a backseat-driver, but if you have concerns about the way a person is driving, you may speak up in efforts to keep everyone safe. For example, if your driver looks at his or her phone, you may politely ask the driver to put the phone away. You may also request that a driver slow down when speeding. Unfortunately, these actions may not help you avoid a car accident caused by another driver.

Injuries as a passenger

The possibility exists that you could face serious injuries in a car accident, even as a passenger. Since you were not driving, however, you may wonder how you could go about seeking financial help with the injuries and other damages you suffered in the crash. Luckily, you have some options:

  • You could file a claim with your driver's car insurance. His or her insurance likely also covers damages caused to passengers.
  • You could file a claim with the other driver's insurance. This option may be slightly trickier because the person's policy may not have enough coverage to extend to passengers in another vehicle.
  • You could file a claim with your own insurance. This option may help you cover immediate expenses, but it could also result in your premium increasing.

Of course, if a driver does not have the appropriate coverage, you may feel out of luck. However, you may have other options still.

Filing a legal claim

In some cases, it may be necessary to take legal action to seek the compensation you deserve after a car accident. Even as a passenger, you have the right to hold others accountable for their negligent or reckless actions. If you believe that filing a personal injury claim could suit your predicament, you may want to contact an Indiana attorney. This legal professional could help go over the accident, your available legal options and how you can best work toward outcomes that suit your circumstances.

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