How to File a Claim as a Passenger in a Car Accident

It is a common misconception that only the driver of a car accident is eligible to sue the negligent party. In fact, a passenger in the crash is just as qualified to file a personal injury claim to recover their damages. If you require financial compensation to heal, follow along to learn how a seasoned Morris County, New Jersey car accident lawyer at The Macri Law Firm can fight on your behalf.

What damages can I claim as a passenger in a car accident?

Just like an innocent driver, as an innocent passenger, you may claim any economic and non-economic damage that you endured in the car accident. Examples that may apply include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Economic damages:
    • Medical bills.
    • Lost wages.
    • Medical equipment.
    • Outside assistance.
  • Non-economic damages:
    • Emotional distress.
    • Pain and suffering.
    • Loss of independence.

How do I file a personal injury claim as a passenger?

Before undergoing the personal injury claim process, you should first have your attorney submit a claim to the negligent driver’s insurance company. Only when the insurer does not offer a justifiable settlement that covers all of your injuries should you begin the lawsuit.

A common hesitation that passengers have is that they do not want to ruin the relationship they have with the host driver, as they are typically a friend or family member, by filing a lawsuit. However, you should know that this claim will not be against the host driver and their personal finances directly, but instead, it will be against their insurance company. So, with your best interest in mind, you should file a personal injury claim if any of the following are applicable to you:

  • You are suffering long-term injuries.
  • You are receiving hefty medical bills for your injuries.
  • You are experiencing lost wages due to your injuries.
  • You are otherwise experiencing physical, emotional, or financial burdens due to your injuries.

What procedure should I assume as a passenger after a car accident?

Like any case, as a passenger in a car accident, you will need to satisfy the burden of proof when filing a legitimate personal injury claim. To do so, follow the below procedure:

  1. Call 911. Law enforcement officers will arrive to conduct a report and call medical attention.
  2. Once they are on the scene, seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
  3. Collect the contact information from all parties involved. This includes their name, number, driver’s license information, and insurance company information. Do the same for present witnesses.
  4. Take photos and videos of the scene to document all injuries and other damages.
  5. Collect all medical documents, medical bills, and other expense receipts that are related to your injuries and damages.
  6. Retain the services of a knowledgeable Morris County, New Jersey auto accident lawyer to kickstart the filing process.


If you require the services of an experienced team of attorneys for legal matters related to estate planning, personal injury, or medical malpractice, contact The Macri Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.