You and your friend were out for a drive when another car ran through a stop sign, striking your car on the passenger side. Your friend has decided to sue the other driver as well as you. If these two lawsuits end up going to settlement instead of trial, who pays the settlement?
Several factors would apply to this case. For instance, were you going the speed limit, did your seatbelts work properly, had you done anything at all that could lay some culpability on you? Were you injured in the accident as well? All of these are important factors both the other driver’s insurance and your own insurance company will look at. Depending on where the fault actually falls, both insurance companies may choose to settle based on a percentage of fault.
If you were speeding as the other person went through the stop sign, they could find you 30% at fault and the other driver 70%. In which case, 30% of the settlement would need to be paid by your insurance company and the other driver’s insurance company would pay 70%. If you are found to have zero fault in the accident, then only the other driver’s insurance will accept liability and pay for actual damages such as medical bills. In many instances, the amount of settlement is based only on making sure the actual medical bills are paid. To sue and win any monetary damages, the passenger would have to prove a “serious injury” occurred.
In a situation like this, especially if you were injured too, it is very important that you speak with an experienced attorney. If you were injured as well, getting your own attorney separate from your friend is essential in making sure your personal best interests are upheld. Call today to have a qualified attorney assess your specific case.