When you think of in a car crash being the driver of the vehicle may come to mind. However, everyday Florida passengers are involved and injured during automotive accidents. When you have been injured as a passenger in a motor vehicle collision, it is essential that you take action to protect your interest. Here are some critical steps an injured automobile passenger needs to take after their accident.
Get Medical Attention
If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, the first thing you need to do is determine the severity of your injuries. If you are badly hurt, you will need an ambulance and to go to a hospital immediately. If your injuries are not of that nature, do not skip seeing a medical professional. While you may feel that you have not been majorly harmed, your injuries may worsen following the accident. Your health is not negotiable.
Talk to the Police
When police are summoned to the scene of a major automobile accident they are tasked with interviewing the parties, locating witnesses, and assessing and documenting the scene. As an injured party, it is important that you talk to the investigating officers about your involvement and injuries. You will also need to get a copy of any report that the police generate to share with applicable insurance companies.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) is auto insurance coverage that is required under Florida law for car owners. PIP is no-fault insurance which covers lost wages, medical bills, and other expenses that may arise if you’ve been injured in an accident. If you have a PIP policy, this coverage can extend to you even if you are riding in another person's vehicle. If you are determined to be seriously injured, this can mean getting 80% coverage of your qualifying medical expenses as well as other benefits. You will want to contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the accident to utilize your coverage.
The Other Parties’ Coverage
You will want to find out the type of insurance coverage the drivers involved in the accident carry. If you do not have PIP the insurance belonging to the driver of the vehicle you were riding in may cover your medical expenses under their PIP policy. You also may benefit from any underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage they have on their policy.
Filing a Claim
Pursuing a personal injury claim in this situation can involve one or both drivers. However, determining who was at fault in this type of accident can be complicated. To figure out how to direct your claim, it will be essential for you to discuss the accident and your injuries with an experienced personal injury attorney.
At the Draper Firm, we have experience helping injured passengers assess their claims and get the compensation they deserve. We understand and can help. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.