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Passenger Injury in a Car Accident

Any driver involved or injured in a car accident receives a proper settlement and compensation, but what about passengers? Regardless of which driver was at fault in a car accident, passengers may have to pay the price for his or her negligence. A car accident is rarely the fault of a passenger, but often times it’s the passenger who bears the maximum brunt of an accident.

Insurance Benefits

Insurance laws and policies surrounding car accidents vary from state to state across the U.S. The state of Florida is among of the ‘no-fault’ states. It is mandatory for drivers to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) with a minimum coverage of $10,000. PIP ensures that any injured driver receives proper compensation to treat his or her injury, regardless of who was at fault in an accident.

The main differentiating factor between passengers injured in a car accident is if they are related to the owner of the vehicle. Florida PIP insurance covers family members of the owner or driver of the vehicle. Therefore, if you are not related to the owner of the vehicle, but sustain injury in his or her vehicle, several possibilities exist.

– Passengers involved in a car accident can claim benefits from the driver’s PIP insurance, given that the passenger doesn’t have any individual PIP coverage.
– Injured passengers who have their own PIP policies are covered under their own policies.
– Injured passengers who are minors are covered under a parent, guardian, or relative’s PIP insurance.

In cases where an injured passenger is not covered under the driver’s PIP insurance of the driver, he or she can put in a claim with the driver’s insurance policy.

Passengers can also put in a claim with the insurance policy of the driver who was at fault, if their own insurance doesn’t cover all their costs. However, the at-fault driver must have bodily injury insurance. If the driver found at fault does not have bodily injury insurance coverage in his or her policy, then additional compensation can be claimed from the insurance policy of the driver they were riding with if he or she has uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

Complexities involved

Sometimes insurance companies don’t provide PIP benefits to passengers when attempting to claim benefits from the driver’s PIP, with whom they were riding. These grounds include:

  • The passenger has a licensed vehicle.
  • The passenger was using the car without the owner’s permission.
  • The passenger contributed to the injury or accident, such as purposefully getting hurt.

Our attorneys and professional legal team have assisted many passengers injured in car accidents to receive the compensation and settlements they rightfully deserved. If you or a family member has been injured as a passenger in a car accident, our Miami car accident lawyers can ensure that you receive a proper settlement.