We all know that when you get into a car accident because of another driver’s fault, you can file a compensation claim and get reimbursed for your injuries and damages. But, what happens when you are the passenger in a vehicle and the drunk driver causes an accident?
DUI is considered a criminal offense in all regions of the US. If you were caused injuries and other damages because of a drunk person’s driving, it does not matter whether you are a passenger in their car or another, you can file a personal injury claim or compensation claim against them with the help of a Salem Oregon personal injury lawyer.
Who covers the injuries of the passengers in a car accident?
If you, as a passenger of a vehicle, have suffered injuries in an accident because of the person driving the vehicle, their insurance can cover your injuries and other damages. You can directly file a compensation claim with their insurance company or take matters to court by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
All drunk car accident claims against a drunk driver are based on their negligence. In order to win the case and compensation, you need to prove the elements of negligence. They are as follows.
- The drunken driver owed a duty of care.
- The drunk driver had caused a breach of duty of care.
- You have sustained injuries from the accident.
- Your injuries were a result of the drunk driver’s breach of duty.
What if the driver is your friend or family member?
If you were in a car with your drunk friend and family member, and you knew about their state, you had a duty of care to stop them from driving or get another ride for your safety. In case you had no idea of their drinking, you can sue them for your injuries.
If you have sustained injuries, you will likely require a lot of money for healthcare and other damages, such as lost wages, vehicle damages, loss of future earnings, etc. While you can pay for these using your own insurance, paying for someone else’s fault can seem unfair. In this case, you may have no other option but to file a claim against your friend or family member’s insurance company.
Such cases can be complicated as they can ruin familial relationships and friendships. However, if your loved one owed you a duty of care, they should have been more responsible and deserve to be held accountable.
Contact an attorney
Going against your friend is something that nobody looks forward to. However, the fact that their negligence has harmed you cannot be ignored. Get help from a skilled lawyer to settle matters as soon as possible. A good attorney can also help you reach a settlement outside of court and avoid filing a lawsuit against your friend.