Passenger Accident Claims
When you’re the passenger of a vehicle, you rarely think about being involved in a road traffic accident and having to claim passenger accident compensation for injuries or other losses – you tend to trust the person driving you to your destination without question.
Generally, you feel at ease. You sit back, relax and enjoy being chauffeured around.
But what if you were involved in an accident? At Non Fault Claims, we can help you - keep reading for more information on making a claim for passenger accident compensation, or call us today for expert advice!
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The Department of Transport state that between June 2016 and June 2017, there were over 27,000 people severely injured or killed in UK road traffic accidents – many of those including passengers.
Being involved in a road traffic accident as a passenger means you could sustain severe injuries, some of which can be long-lasting.
The most common passenger injuries include:
- Neck injuries, including whiplash
- Back and spinal injuries
- Brain and Head injuries
- Broken bones and fractures
- Cuts and bruises
- Psychological damage
Some injuries may not appear straight away and some can be debilitating, meaning you cannot work – you must seek medical attention immediately after an accident.
Depending on the severity, an accident might also even leave you with traumatic psychological impacts like PTSD or fears of travelling with others again in the future.
The responsibility of road traffic accidents can be disputed – in which case, you will definitely need the help of an injury lawyer. It may even lead to a court case.
Road traffic accidents can be caused by:
- The driver - whether that’s the driver of another vehicle or the one in yours.
- Passenger(s) distracting the driver.
- People stepping out onto the road in front of a vehicle.
- Poor road quality (defects like potholes) or even insufficient road lighting – in which case you could claim against the local authorities or council.
- Vehicle malfunctions – in these rarer cases, the manufacturer would be at fault.
What if the driver was to blame? A driver can be negligent in many ways – for example, if they weren’t paying close attention to roads, driving irresponsibly, using mobile phones while driving, under the influence of drink or drugs, or speeding.
Regarding passenger responsibility, you are responsible for your own safety the majority of the time. Legally, you must wear a seatbelt and you are responsible for making sure it is properly fastened. According to GOV.UK, it is also the law to ensure that children are in the right car seat, unless they are 135cm tall or are 12 years old.
The passenger should be responsible for their own actions (except young children) - never get into a car when you’re aware the driver has been drinking alcohol or taking drugs and avoid distracting the driver.
If you would like to claim compensation for personal injuries sustained as a vehicle passenger in a road traffic accident, you may be able to with the help of our personal injury solicitors at Non Fault Claims.
If the driver of the vehicle was liable for your car accident, then people often feel awkward about making a claim and may be reluctant to sue the driver – as they could be a friend or family member. However, it’s important to note that their car insurance policy is in place to cover such situations and in almost all cases, it is the insurer’s responsibility to pay the claim settlement.
If you were a passenger in an uninsured vehicle, you are still able to claim – ask us at Non Fault Claims for more advice, or read our resource page for more information.
Compensation will help you pay for medical costs and give you some financial security for the time it takes you to recover, as well as take care of lost earnings from being unable to work and any other financial implications – meaning you won’t lose out from your own personal finances.
You have the legal right to be put back into the physical and financial state you were in before the accident happened – compensation can reduce the financial stress that can come with getting back on track.
Even if you weren’t wearing a seatbelt at the time the accident happened, it is still possible to claim for your injuries, although in this case, the defendant could dispute the claim and argue contributory negligence – meaning that your overall compensation could be reduced. It is always best to seek legal help in these situations.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, the first and foremost thing you should do is seek medical attention. Even if you feel okay, it’s better to get checked over, as some injuries may develop later on and there’s the possibility of underlying issues of which you might not yet be aware. Always be sure to keep a copy of your medical reports, as this will be useful later on should you decide to claim.
You should begin pursuing a claim once you’ve sought medical advice and recovered as best as you can.
Here are some of the things you should do that will strengthen your passenger accident claim:
- The police should be contacted after a road traffic accident. They will make an official, detailed report of the accident, which can be used later on in your claim – try to get a copy from them if you can.
- Take photos of as much evidence regarding the scene of the accident as possible (if it’s safe to do this) – including the surrounding area, all vehicles involved and any damage and injuries. Try to do this immediately after the accident before the scene changes.
- It is also really important that you write down a detailed report of everything that happened before, during and after the accident – all events leading up to the incident too and any behaviour leading up to it. Try to include as much detail as possible – even weather details! No aspect of the event is too small – the date, time, exact location (use Google maps to pinpoint your exact location and screenshot it), etc.
- Gather all the details regarding the driver of the vehicle you were in at the time of the accident and details of the other drivers involved – including full name, address, contact details, vehicle and insurance details.
- If possible, get the contact details of any witnesses if they are happy for you to (road users, pedestrians, other passengers, for example) – they can help verifying details of the accident later on in the claim.
Doing all this can maximise the chances of your claim succeeding and receiving compensation – contact us at Non Fault Claims to see how we can help you with all this.
If you have been a passenger in a road traffic accident, there are a number of expenses you can incur as a result – some you may not have thought about. The compensation amount is usually calculated based on all your losses and the extent of them, so the total differs from case to case.
Here is a detailed explanation of all the financial damages you can make a claim for:
- General damages – this means all your sustained injuries.
- Medical costs – if you’re seeking medical attention privately, you will have to pay for visits, medication or any equipment you might need to help you recover – for example, wheelchair or crutches. You may decide to pay for things like physiotherapy or hiring home care to help you around the house (for the more serious injury).
- Travel expenses – travelling back and for to your local GP or for hospital appointments can rack up fuel costs, or taxi fares.
- Loss of income – if you’re too injured to work, then compensation can help cover for the number of hours and earnings lost.
Many things determine the amount of compensation you could receive – our personal injury lawyers can help to give a better idea of how much you could be owed.
Every passenger accident claims case is different, and the amount of compensation you could potentially receive depends on a lot of factors. For example, the type of injury sustained, the severity of the injury, how long it will take you to recover, psychological damage, and other losses like medical expenses or loss of earnings, as mentioned above.
The average payout for whiplash, one of the most common car accident injuries, can range from around £300 to £6,290.
For an estimation of other passenger-related injuries, see our full payout guide here.
Please remember that these are just guides, taken from the Judicial College’s Guidelines for General Damages in Personal Injury Cases. For a better idea of how much compensation you could be awarded, call us today - we’ll be able to assess your situation and give you a more accurate figure!
At Non Fault Claims, we understand that the whole process of making a claim can be time-consuming, complex and costly – especially if you’ve had to have time off work and you’ve incurred medical costs as a result.
In these situations, it would be best to have a No Win No Fee solicitor to reduce financial stress and risk, and we do our best to work in line with this agreement. But what does No Win No Fee (NWNF) mean?
Usually, a solicitor will take your case on if you have a high chance of success – either way, they are taking a risk on you, as with this NWNF agreement there are no upfront fees required from you.
In the case that your solicitor doesn’t win your case for you, then you don’t have to pay any legal fees. If, however, your case is successful, then a fee will be deducted from the total payout.
Ultimately, this means you’re not paying the fees from your own pocket – resulting in less financial stress on your behalf.
Why choose us?
At Non Fault Claims, it is our priority to make the claims process as easy as possible for you – so that you can focus on recovery and getting yourself back on track. You have the legal right to return to the physical and financial position you were in before the accident happened, and we aim to help you with that every step of the way.
After an accident, you must focus on getting better, but when you’re ready to seek compensation, we’ll be here to help! We’re on hand even if you just need more information.
Call us today for free, non-obligatory advice to see how we can help you!