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Recovering Damages After a Car Accident

What If the Driver of Your Vehicle Was at Fault?

Recovering Damages After a Car AccidentIf you’re hurt in a car, truck, or motorcycle accident, there’s a tendency to look at the other vehicles involved in the wreck and determine whether they were careless or negligent. But what if you’re a passenger in a vehicle, and the driver of that vehicle causes the crash? Can you file a legal claim for compensation for your losses? What if the driver is a family member?

Can You Sue the Driver of the Vehicle in Which You Were Traveling?

Absolutely! When you suffer a personal injury caused by another person, you generally have a right to seek compensation for any associated costs. Most personal injury claims are based on a legal theory of negligence. Negligence requires you to prove that the other person:

  • failed to act as a reasonable person would under the circumstances,
  • thereby causing an accident
  • that led you to suffer actual losses.

Accordingly, if you’re hurt in a motor vehicle collision that occurred because the driver of the car in which you were traveling was speeding, ran a red light, or was driving while distracted, you can generally include them as defendants in a lawsuit to reimburse you for your losses. In fact, as a general rule, you can sue both the driver of your car and any other driver who was potentially at fault.

What If the Driver of Your Car Was a Family Member?

Your right to sue can potentially change if the driver was a family member, based on the circumstances of your relationship and living arrangements. In New Jersey, auto insurance policies generally cover the policyholder and all resident relatives—any family members with whom they live. Accordingly, if you’re injured in an accident as a passenger in a car driven by someone with whom you live, you cannot sue that family member as you’re already covered by their policy. On the other hand, if you were riding with a relative with whom you don’t live, you can take legal action against them to get compensation for your losses.

Contact the Law Offices of David J. Karbasian, PC

Send us an email today or call us at 856-667-4666 / 856-600-HURT to schedule an appointment. Evening and weekend consultations are available upon request. We can come to your home or the hospital to meet with you, if necessary.

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