Making an auto accident claim as a passenger is much different from making an auto accident claim as a driver, and there are several reasons for this. For example, a driver is more likely to share in the blame for the accident as compared to a passenger. Here are a few tips to help you pursue your car accident claim as a passenger:
Get Information from All Drivers
In any type of car accident, you should get the contact and insurance information of the other driver and witnesses. If you are a passenger of a car involved in a multi-car accident, you should get the insurance and contact information of the witnesses and all drivers involved in the accident. This is because you may not know for sure which driver is liable for your damages, so you should take the safe way and get collect information from all the drivers involved in the crash.
Make Your Claim against All Drivers
If the issue of liability is not in dispute, then you can just file your third-party claim against the liable driver just as you would in any other kind of accident. A good example of this is if you were a passenger in a parked car and another driver hit you from behind. in this case, you can just file your claim against the other driver because they are obviously liable for the accident.
In most cases, however, the issue of liability isn't clear. In fact, most multi-car accidents end up with drivers blaming each other for the accident. As a passenger in one of the cars, you don't need to get embroiled in the fight. Instead, you should file your claim against all of the drivers involved in the accident and let their respective insurance companies sort out the issue of liability either by themselves or in court.
File a First-Party Accident Claim
As mentioned above, it might take some time for the drivers involved in the accident, plus their respective insurance carriers, to sort out the issue of liability. This means it may take some time for you to get your compensation, time that you might not have.
If you really need to get your money fast, say for medical bills and such like things, then you can file a first-party claim (a claim to your auto insurance company). Your insurance company wills settle your claim and then collect it from the drivers who will eventually be found liable for the accident. Typically, you must either have PIP (personal injury protection) or MedPay (medical payments coverage) coverage to make a first-party claim in this case. Contact an auto accident attorney for more help.