When considering the question: How much money can a passenger in a car accident receive in Georgia? The short answer is: It depends on the severity of your injuries and the facts of the case. It is rare for a passenger to be at fault for an auto accident, so if you were hurt in this way, you would most likely be able to recover financial damages for your injuries and other related losses, which can include:
- Medical bills, treatment, and rehabilitation costs
- Pain, suffering, and inconvenience for the harm caused by your injuries
- Lost wages and compensation if your injuries affect your ability to work
- Lost or damaged property
Families of passengers involved in a fatal car accident may also pursue compensation against the at-fault party by filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
Who Is Financially Liable for My Injuries?
The at-fault party or parties are responsible for paying you compensation. Liable parties in a car accident could include:
- The at-fault driver of either car
- The employer of a driver if they caused or contributed to the accident
- A vehicle parts manufacturer, if a defective component caused the accident
- Government entities or municipalities, if the roads are not properly maintained
If you know the driver, it is understandable that you may feel anxious about making a claim against them. However, it is important to remember that their auto insurance provider will be financially on the hook – not the driver.
Further, if you cannot work while you recover and the medical bills are piling up, the only person suffering by not making a claim is you. You should not have to pay for someone else’s mistake. It is why we have insurance in the first place.
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How Much Compensation Can I Recover as a Passenger in a Car Accident?
Minimum limits for auto liability insurance coverage required by Georgia law are:
- $25,000 for bodily injury per person with a maximum allocation of $50,000 per incident (the total amount that can be paid if more than one person is hurt).
- $25,000 for property damage liability which is capped at $25,000 per incident
Therefore, as a passenger, you would be covered for $25,000 bodily injury and $25,000 for property damage under the at-fault driver’s insurance. However, if your injuries are serious, it is unlikely an insurance claim will be enough to cover your medical expenses. This means you may need to use your own uninsured or underinsured policy to make up for the shortfall if you have this type of coverage.
We know it can be frustrating and confusing to trawl through the jargon of a policy, so if you have any questions, our legal team is happy to help.
Your Rights if Your Claim Is Unfairly Denied, Delayed, or Underpaid
Insurance companies are required to act in good faith towards their policyholder and injured third parties (which you would be as a passenger). This means they must uphold their promises in a policy and exercise fair dealings when handling claims.
If an insurer fails to respond to a claim fairly in line with best practice, they expose themselves to the risk of “bad faith” litigation. This typically happens when insurance companies unfairly deny, delay, or underpay coverage on a valid claim.
You have options if an insurance company has unfairly treated you. For example, filing a bad faith liability case against the insurer may be possible, allowing damages to be paid over the applicable policy limit in some cases.
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How Do I File My Claim?
Managing an injury claim is likely the last thing on your mind while you are coming to terms with what happened and recovering from your injuries. Our car accident attorneys can help you gather the evidence you will need to satisfy the liable party’s insurer of who was at fault for the accident and the injuries and harm you have suffered.
We will manage every aspect of your case so that you can fully focus on your recovery, including settlement negotiations, to ensure you are fairly compensated. Further, if we do find the insurer has acted in bad faith, we will pursue your case using the appropriate legal channels.
How Long Do I Have to File a Claim?
Injured passengers and bereaved families have two years to file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit per Georgia’s O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 statute. Two years can go by much quicker than you realize. You and your family will be dealing with the long-term ramifications of the accident and it is easy to let deadlines slip by.
Let us help you stay on track. We will ensure all of your paperwork is filed on time and you do not miss your opportunity for justice and compensation.
I Have More Questions About Being Injured in a Car Accident. Can You Help?
Yes! The legal team at Bader Scott Injury Lawyers is keen to hear from you and answer any questions about your case during a free initial consultation. We understand the stresses and frustrations of being injured and the toll it takes on your work, family life, and finances, especially when someone else’s reckless actions cause them.
To learn more about how we may be able to assist you, contact our legal team today.