Can a Passenger in the Car of the At-Fault Driver Recover Damages for Injuries?
In the aftermath of a motor vehicle accident, the focus is often on injuries to those in the vehicle of the driver who is not at fault. Often, though, there are passengers in the at-fault driver’s car who suffer significant injury. Can you file a lawsuit against the driver who caused the crash if you were a passenger in that vehicle? Can you pursue reimbursement for medical expenses in New Jersey as a passenger if the vehicle of the at-fault driver?
Under New Jersey’s “no-fault” auto insurance law, an injured person doesn’t initially seek recovery from the driver or his/her insurance provider. Car owners seek reimbursement of medical expenses through their own auto insurance provider by filing a personal injury protection (PIP) claim. Those who don’t own a car typically file a PIP claim with the insurance provider of a relative who owns a car—a parent, sibling, child, or other relation.
But what if you are injured in a motor vehicle accident, don’t own your own car (and have your own policy of automobile insurance), and don’t have a relative who owns a car? If the driver of the at-fault vehicle has insurance, you can file a PIP claim through their insurer. You may, however, file only one PIP claim for an accident.
In the unlikely event that you don’t own a car; you have no relatives who own a vehicle; and the driver of your car was uninsured, you can seek compensation from a special state fund known as the New Jersey Property-Liability Insurance Guaranty Association (PLIGA).
Contact Attorney Howard N. Sobel
At the office of Howard N. Sobel, we work closely with people who suffer personal injury in New Jersey. Contact our office online or call us at 856-424-6400 to set up a free initial consultation (on selected cases). We are currently available by phone, text message, or videoconference. Evening and weekend appointments can be arranged upon request. We accept all major credit cards.
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