Passengers in an auto accident are often overlooked victims. When insurance companies are trying to determine which driver was at fault, the passenger can be lost in the process even though they sustained injuries that were just as severe.
Passengers involved in auto accidents have a higher chance of being low-balled by insurance companies than other parties. The insurance claim process is also more complicated for passengers due to the state’s comparative fault system.
Attorney for Passenger Injuries in Montgomery County, TX
Because passengers in auto accidents are often overlooked, you should contact an experienced auto accident attorney at Evans & Powell, PLLC before speaking with an insurance company. Evans & Powell, PLLC will negotiate on your behalf and fight to make sure you achieve an adequate and full compensation.
Call us today at (936) 622-2000 to schedule a time to speak with an attorney about your case. We represent clients in Conroe, Montgomery, The Woodlands, Willis and surrounding areas.
Overview of Passenger Injuries in Montgomery County, TX
When a passenger is injured in a car accident, one of the questions they may ask is who’s liable for their injuries. In Texas, the insurance company of the driver who was at-fault is required to pay compensation for damages. This could be the driver of the vehicle you were a passenger of, the other driver, or in some instances, both drivers.
Typically, the driver who was a fault caused the accident because of their negligence. Negligence is considered careless behavior that caused harm or injury to another person. A person can be considered negligent by doing something that she or he shouldn’t have done or failing to do something they should have done. This can include failing to yield, speeding, or running a red light.
If your driver is found to be at-fault for the accident you can file a claim with their insurance company. A portion of their coverage should be designated to injured passengers. Unfortunately, this portion of coverage is typically low, and if you sustained serious injuries, it might not be enough to cover medical expenses.
Comparative negligence may come into play if both parties are found to be somewhat at fault. If this is the case, a jury will allocate the fault, usually as a percentage. For instance, if the plaintiff was 30% at fault and the defendant was 70% at fault, then each party will be required to pay their share of the damages. In Texas, if a victim is found to be 51% or more at fault they cannot recover damages.
If you get into a vehicle with a driver you know is under the influence, you may lose the right to receive compensation for your injuries. You will not be considered at-fault for the accident but will be held responsible for your decision to get into a vehicle with a driver who was under the influence.
If you didn’t know your driver was under the influence, and you sustained injuries from the accident, you should speak with a personal injury attorney who can help you receive the compensation to need.
Regardless of who was the passenger or driver, when you get into an auto accident that results in injuries, you could face costly medical bills, pain, suffering and loss of work and wages. As an injured passenger, you are entitled to compensation of three different types of damages. These damages include:
Economic Damages: economic damages are those that are easy to place a monetary value on. This can consist of, lost income, medical expenses and property damage. It can also include future lost income if you suffer debilitating injuries the result in you be unable to work.
Non-economic Damages: Non-economic damages are more difficult to put a monetary value on. For example, how do you put an economic value on pain and suffering, mental anxiety and loss of loved ones? These damages are subjective, so they have to be proven and presented in a way that demonstrates the damages are as legitimate as special damages.
Punitive Damages: This type of damage is used to punish parties where gross negligence has been proven. Gross negligence is conduct that is considered beyond ordinary negligence because it involves an individual’s state of mind and their disregard for the safety of others. For example, drunk drivers who speed and get into auto accidents the result of injury are usually guilty of gross negligence.
State law places a cap on the amount of punitive damages a plaintiff can receive. Under section 41.008 of the Civil Practice and Remedies Code, punitive damages may not exceed an amount equal to more than two times the amount of economic damages plus the amount equal to non-economic damages found by the jury to exceed $750,000 or $200,000.
Damages | Chapter 41- Read through the chapter of the Civil Practice and Remedies Code that governs punitive damages in Texas. The chapter covers grounds where punitive damages can be rewarded, evidence that needs to be proven and limits on the amount. The chapter can be read on the Texas Constitution and Statutes website.
Accidents and Accident Report | Chapter 550 - Read chapter 550 of the Transportation Code to learn how auto accidents are handled in Texas. You can learn more about accidents involving personal injury, death and damages to vehicles.
Personal Injury Attorney for Passenger Injuries in Montgomery County, TX
If you were involved in an auto accident as a passenger, you should seek legal representation from Evans & Powell, PLLC to ensure you receive fair and full compensation for your injuries. Our attorneys will fight for your rights and achieve the best possible outcome for your situation.
Call Evans & Powell, PLLC at (936) 622-2000 to schedule a free case consultation or submit your information in the online contact form. We assist clients with personal injury claims in Pinehurst, Porter Heights, Splendora, Cut and Shoot and other surrounding areas.