Car accidents can lead to devastating, even deadly consequences. In some cases, the most severe injuries are suffered by passengers in someone else’s vehicle. After an accident, injured passengers have a legal right to obtain full and fair compensation for the harm that they suffered. At Therman Law Offices, our Wheaton and Schaumburg car accident lawyers can analyze the facts of your case and provide you with an honest assessment of your claim. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns at every step of the way.Bringing a Claim as an Injured Passenger
Passengers in a car are at the mercy of the driver to keep them safe. Errors made by a driver can quickly become tragic for the passengers. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, almost 24,000 passengers were injured in auto accidents in 2010 alone, accounting for 26.8 percent of all car crash injuries that year. Nearly 180 passengers were killed in motor vehicle accidents in 2010, or 22.7 percent of the year’s car crash fatalities. Passengers can be at great risk of injuries in a number of different types of accidents, such as rollover accidents, side-impact accidents, and even multi-vehicle accidents.
Passengers in motor vehicles are rarely capable of causing or preventing accidents on the road. A passenger injured in a motor vehicle accident is entitled to pursue a cause of action against all of the negligent parties that caused or contributed to their injuries. This means that a passenger can sue the driver of the car in which they were traveling, as well as drivers of other vehicles that were involved in the accident.
Drivers owe a duty of care to their passengers as well as to others on the road. If a driver violates this duty, they may be responsible for an accident and any resulting harm under the legal theory of negligence. Negligence takes place when a driver fails to use the level of care that an ordinarily prudent driver would have used under the same or similar circumstances, thereby causing injuries or harm to a passenger. In order to win a negligence case, the attorney for the party filing the lawsuit has the burden of proving the following elements by a preponderance of the evidence:
- The driver owed the injured passenger a duty of care;
- The driver breached the duty of care owed to the passenger; and
- The driver’s breach was a direct and proximate cause of the accident and injuries.
Each of the aforementioned elements must be established before any damages can be recovered. It is important to note that, in many cases, more than one motorist may be at fault for your accident, and you may be able to recover damages from a number of these parties.
Passengers injured in auto accidents often incur devastating medical expenses and loss of income down the line. As a result, like any other person who is injured by a negligent motorist in an auto accident, injured passengers may be able to recover a variety of damages for their harm, including medical bills, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and scarring and disfigurement. Each case is unique, and the compensation available to you for your injuries will depend on the circumstances of your accident.Discuss Your Legal Options with an Attorney in Wheaton or Schaumburg
If you are a passenger in a vehicle involved in a crash in Illinois, whether it was on a highway or on a city or suburban street, you need to reach out to a seasoned motor vehicle collision lawyer who can help. At Therman Law Offices, we routinely represent passengers who have been injured in motor vehicle crashes. Determining fault in auto accident cases can be complex, but having a knowledgeable attorney on your side could make all of the difference in your case. We proudly serve injured passengers in cities such as Wheaton, Schaumburg, Bloomingdale, Roselle, Carol Stream, Glendale Heights, Lombard, Villa Park, Addison, and Elmhurst. For a free case evaluation, do not hesitate to call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online.