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The passenger of a vehicle that collided with an SUV sustained serious injuries. According to a McCracken County Sheriff’s Office Deputy, the driver of the car was attempting to cross over Clarks River Road when he drove into the path of the SUV.

The crash happened around 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, February 26, 2019. Both drivers were treated at the scene and the passenger of the car was take to a local hospital.

Passenger Injuries

More people are ride-sharing or carpooling today, and this increases the risk of injuries to passengers. According to a study by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, passengers are at a greater risk of injury in an automobile accident then are the drivers of the same vehicle. The study surprised many safety industry experts who had relied on years of data on crash-test dummies.

The study suggests three reasons why the passenger is at a greater risk:

  1. That passengers are less likely to wear seatbelts.
  2. That the steering wheel actually adds to the protection of the passenger especially in spine and whiplash injuries as the passenger moves farther forward and then back into the seat.
  3. Drivers are able to brace themselves for the impact as they have control over the vehicle.

Who Pays for the Passengers Injuries?

In an accident, the at-fault person pays for all damages that came from the incident. However, many times a passenger is injured and the at-fault driver was operating the same car the passenger was injured in.

Therefore, the injured passenger will have to make a claim against the driver of that car. This brings up some issues. First, does the policy pay for the same injuries to the passenger as the injured driver? Yes, the insurance company is bound by a contract to pay out any damages the insured driver is liable for.

Sometimes the driver of the car doesn’t have insurance, if this happens, the injured passenger can possible use their own insurance, depending on the policy. Some policies have a medpay or personal injury protection (PIP) provision that will pay out regardless of fault, and they policy only requires that the injured by in an auto accident. However, these provisions will typically only pay for the medical bills and not other damages like lost time from work.

Do I need an Attorney if I’m a Passenger?

A question arises when a passenger is injured along with the driver of a car. Sometimes they think that they don’t need an attorney since the driver has one. However, there are many issues that come up, including that the driver might be partially responsible for the crash and will have their compensation cut because of it.

However, the passenger’s compensation shouldn’t be lowered because he or she wasn’t driving and didn’t share in the fault. So the best thing to do is at least talk to your own attorney if you are injured as a passenger.

Get an Attorney on Your Side

Don’t rely on the insurance company and their lawyers to treat you fairly, and don’t take it for granted that another person’s attorney is going to help you just because they are on the side of a co-injured party. You need to talk to someone on your side who can advise you and evaluate your individual case.

The attorneys at Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, have that experience. They have helped countless victims of all types of accidents including those with injured passengers. Get this experience and knowledge working on your side. Call (800) 937 8443 or click here to contact an attorney that can start on your case today.