I was a passenger during a car accident. Do I still need a lawyer?

As a passenger in a car accident in Toronto, you should consult a lawyer if you were injured. As the passenger, you will not be considered at fault for the car accident, but that does not mean you won’t need some support in the process. If you’ve been injured in the accident, you will absolutely be entitled to benefits and compensation.

Question: Whose insurance company should pay my benefits?

You may have some options with regards to who to pursue benefits from. If you require compensation, you can file a claim with your own insurance company, but you can also file with either driver’s insurance companies. You will want to pursue the other driver’s insurance first, then the driver whose vehicle you were in, and finally your own. The at-fault driver will likely be held most responsible to pay out claims of anyone injured in the accident.

If the damages of your injuries exceed what one insurance policy will pay, it is possible for you to file more than one claim. For instance, if you file a claim with the other driver’s insurance but it only pays 75% of your damages, you can file a claim with the insurance company of the person driving the vehicle you were in for the other 25%. You cannot file to exceed the damages of your injuries, meaning that you cannot ask for more than 100% from all companies inclusively. You will not receive 75% of the damages from one company, and another 75% from the other; your award can only total 100% of your damages. But where one policy will not pay wholly, the other company can supplement. Likewise, if you need to file a claim with your own insurance company to make up the difference, you have that option as well.

Question: What if the driver was a member of my family?

If the driver is a member of your family, and you live with that person, you cannot file a claim against their policy, because you are considered insured on the policy. You will not be able to file a third-party claim in this case, as with the other instances; instead, the driver’s claim will have to cover your injuries in addition to their own.

Question: So how does a lawyer help me?

The days following a car accident can be stressful and confusing. Especially if you do not know how to deal with insurance companies and paperwork, you will want the support of a personal injury lawyer. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may require a lot of assistance, and you want to ensure that you are not forgotten by the insurance companies since you are not one of the drivers involved. Insurance companies are notorious for denying claims, so retaining the services of a personal injury lawyer, like those at Clarke Law, will help fight against them to obtain a fair award. If the case goes to court, your lawyer will be able to provide expert witnesses and all of the evidence necessary to get you compensated. The earlier you hire the lawyer, the better for you.

Leave a Reply