What to Do as a Passenger Injured in a Charlotte Area Car Accident?
Passengers in motor vehicles or on motorcycles are at the mercy of the driver. They rely on the driver to make safe decisions and avoid being involved in a car accident. When the driver makes an error, a tragedy can occur. In seconds, a passenger can go from living his or her everyday life to becoming severely injured after a dangerous car accident. Passengers can become injured through no fault of their own because of errors made by their driver or third-party drivers on the road. If you have been injured as a passenger in a car accident in the Charlotte region, you have several legal options to seek compensation for your injuries.Seeking Compensation Through an Insurance Company
Under North Carolina law, passengers who become injured have a right to file a claim for compensation through the at-fault driver's insurance company. The first step in pursuing compensation is to determine who was at fault for the accident. We recommend speaking with one of our experienced car accident attorneys. We will use the resources at our disposal to conduct a thorough investigation into your case.
We will speak to witnesses, review the police report, gather evidence from any video footage, and work with a team of accident reconstruction specialists. We will use these resources to determine which driver or drivers cause the car accident that resulted in your injuries. In almost all cases, passengers are not at fault for car accidents. You are most likely free from any fault for causing the car accident that resulted in your injuries. Next, we will look to all the relevant details to determine whether the at-fault driver's insurance policy will cover the full extent of your damages.What if the At-Fault Driver is Uninsured or Underinsured?
Passengers can file a claim through the at-fault driver's insurance company. They can request compensation for all of their out-of-pocket expenses related to their injuries. Insurance companies should cover medical bills, lost income, hospitalization costs, and future earnings loss. They should also cover pain and suffering. North Carolina requires all drivers to carry minimum amounts of auto insurance. Unfortunately, some drivers do not follow this requirement and refuse to purchase auto insurance.
Suppose you are a passenger who became injured in a car accident. The driver of the vehicle in which you were riding was not at fault. A third-party driver ran a red light and collided with your car. You will be able to file a claim with the at-fault driver. However, if the at-fault driver does not have insurance or their insurance policy is too small to cover your damages, you may be able to file a claim with your insurance company. Most insured drivers carry uninsured or underinsured driver insurance. This type of insurance provides compensation for the driver or passengers when the at-fault driver's insurance policy is inadequate.We Hold the Insurance Company Accountable
Remember that even though you are filing an insurance claim with your own driver's company, this does not mean the company will treat you fairly. Insurance companies are notorious for using any means necessary to deny claims. In many cases, they will try to contact you immediately after the car accident, hoping that you will give a statement and inadvertently admit fault.
It is wise to speak to an attorney before negotiating with any insurance company. Several of our lawyers have experience with insurance agencies. We know the tactics insurance companies use to avoid paying victims the compensation they deserve. We will help you negotiate the best possible settlement. If that is not possible, we will bring your case to court.Personal Injury Lawsuits
It becomes necessary or beneficial to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver in some cases. Depending on the facts of the case, there could be one or several at-fault drivers. For example, suppose a commercial truck driver negligently swerved into your lane, causing the car accident that resulted in your injuries. In this case, you may be able to bring a lawsuit against the truck driver’s employer for the negligent hiring of the driver. We will investigate your case and determine the best way to bring a personal injury lawsuit.Contact a Charlotte Car Accident Lawyer Today
If you become injured as a passenger in a Charlotte area car accident, Arnold & Smith, PLLC can help. Contact our skilled personal injury lawyers today to schedule your free initial consultation.