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Our Injured Child and Passenger Attorneys Can Help Recover Compensation

As a passenger in an automobile accident you may be entitled to receive compensation for injuries you incur. Questions regarding much you are entitled to receive, as well as who may be liable for the damages, depends largely on the particular circumstances of your case. There are, however, some general rules which apply to passenger injuries under California law. For specific guidance on your personal injury claim, speak with one of our seasoned auto accident attorneys

Passenger involved in car crash braces herself for impact

Breaking Down Liability When You're an Injured Passenger in an Auto Accident

As with any personal injury case, the first step is to determine who or what caused the injury you received. Under California law, a driver of an automobile has a duty to the passengers in their car to exercise care and caution while operating a motor vehicle. Failing to properly exercise this duty can lead to injury or death for which the driver’s automobile insurance is liable. For example, was your injury caused by your driver being distracted by their cell phone, radio, or another passenger? Was the driver being reckless when the injury occurred? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, then you should speak with one of our firm’s accident attorneys.

It is not just the driver of your vehicle who could be at fault in a personal injury claim. Liability for the accident may lie with the driver of another vehicle, the city or county where the injury occurred, or even the company that manufactured the car. Determining which party or parties is responsible is a question of law your auto accident attorney can address with you.

What Should I Do if I Am Injured While a Passenger in Another Person’s Vehicle?

If you are a passenger who is injured in an automobile accident, there are steps you can take to bolster your chances of having a successful personal injury claim. As soon as the accident happens, if you are able, you should take the following steps: 

  •     Call 911. Receiving medical care for anyone injured is critical.
  •     Ask the responding police officer(s) for copies of their reports.
  •     Cooperate with the police officer(s) but do not speculate and only state facts.
  •     Take photographs of your injuries, damage done to the vehicle(s), and of the accident scene.
  •     Obtain the names and contact information of all drivers and eyewitnesses.
  •     Obtain the automobile insurance information for any driver involved in the accident.
  •     Do not admit fault in any way to anyone.
  •     Cooperate with any medical professionals that respond to the scene, even if you do not feel that you require medical attention.
  • If there are no medical professionals at the scene, seek a check-up as soon as possible, even if you do not feel as if you've suffered an injury. Some injuries are not apparent immediately and documentation from a medical professional will be crucial to your accident claim.
  •     Do not speak with anyone from the insurance company. Refer all questions to your auto accident attorneys.

Can I Sue if My Child was Injured in Someone Else's Car?

First and foremost, if your child is a passenger in a vehicle that is involved in an accident, have them examined by a medical professional as soon as possible, even if they do not seem to have suffered any injuries. Comply with any directions you are given for their care.

If your child is injured in a car accident you, as their parent, are able to file a car accident claim on their behalf. The statute of limitations (or time you have to file a claim) is extended when you are filing a claim for a child, but you should still act quickly in obtaining an attorney to represent your child. Whether or not it is in the best interest of your child to delay in filing the claim is an issue you can discuss with your auto accident attorneys.

In addition to being able to file for the cost of medical care and pain suffered, you may also claim lost wages if your child is employed. Any income you have lost due to having to care for your child rather than work may be recoverable as are any expenses you have in hiring someone else to provide care to your child while you work.

Our Auto Accident Attorneys Explain Insurance Coverage

In the state of California, a driver is required to carry automobile insurance. Determining which insurance company should pay for your injuries depends on which driver caused the accident. If the fault lies with the driver of the vehicle you were a passenger in, you should seek restitution from that driver’s automobile insurance company. If the fault lies with the driver of another vehicle involved in the accident, then you will seek damages from that driver’s automobile insurance company.

It is possible for more than one driver to be at fault for the accident and in that case you may seek monetary damages from both automobile insurance companies. It is also possible that an at-fault driver may have no insurance coverage, or not enough insurance coverage, to cover the claims for which the driver is liable. If this should happen, an adept auto accident attorney can assist you in recuperating your damages through other avenues, including uninsured coverage under your own policy. 

Does Making an Uninsured or Underinsured Claim with My Own Insurance Company Increase My Rate?

Most of our clients are concerned that if they make a claim with their own insurance company for uninsured or underinsured benefits it will increase their rates, expose them to being dropped from their insurance company, or uninsurable in the future. Rest assured that the insurance company cannot take any of these actions in response to making an uninsured or underinsured claim.  In California, under proposition 103, an insurance company is not permitted to increase rates, drop an insured, or not extend coverage to a person who makes an uninsured or underinsured claim. You can, and should, make a claim under your policy’s uninsured or underinsured coverage since you pay for this benefit and it will have no negative consequences.

Contact One of Our Top Auto Accident Attorneys for Help

With a practice focused exclusively on handling personal injury claims, our auto accident attorneys are skilled at providing representation to passengers and children injured in motor vehicle accidents. Backed by years of experience and a track record of successful results, our lawyers have developed winning strategies and informed perspectives that result in our clients receiving premier representation and the solutions they seek. Our firm can handle every step of the process for you and our assistance never costs you anything unless our representation results in your receiving the monetary compensation you are owed. Contact us at 310-273-7300, or on our contact page, for a free consultation, We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and se habla espanol.