Driver’s aren’t the only people who suffer in car accidents. Passengers also sustain significant injuries due to the negligence of one or more drivers. In most cases, passengers can file insurance claims for their damages or pursue a personal injury lawsuit (if necessary). 


Generally, California's personal injury laws require the at-fault driver and their insurer to cover passenger damages up to the policy limits. However, determining who to pursue a claim against can be complicated without the help of a proven car accident lawyer. 


If you’ve suffered passenger injuries in a car accident, contact a car accident lawyer at Steinberg Injury Lawyers today. We’re confident that we can help secure the best possible settlement for you and your family under the circumstances. 


Continue reading to learn more about passenger injury liability in California. 

The At-Fault Driver’s Insurer Pays For The Injuries

In Califonia, drivers who are solely at fault for the accident are liable for any injuries caused to passengers. Their insurer must pay damages to the injured parties up to the policy limits. California requires all motorists to carry at least $15,000 for injuries to another person. However, some policies have a higher payout. 

The At-Fault Driver Pays Out-of-Pocket

If the at-fault driver was intoxicated or recklessly driving when they caused the accident, their insurer may decline to cover any damages. In that case, passengers can still pursue damages directly against the driver. Further, if the insurance payout does not cover the cost of the injuries, injured passengers can sue the responsible driver for additional costs. 

Third-Party Liability 

Many car accident injuries occur due to negligence by a third party. A few of the most common third-party liability cases include, but are not limited to: 

  • Accidents caused by individuals driving work vehicles or otherwise operating as an employee at the time of the accident 

  • Manufacturing defects caused by the carmaker (i.e., faulty autonomous driving software)

  • Accidents caused by poor maintenance or repair work 

  • Poorly maintained roads or hazardous conditions caused by certain government entities 


It’s important to note that suing a third party (especially the government) can be time-consuming and complicated. It’s recommended that you consult with an experienced car accident lawyer to discuss your case before pursuing a personal injury claim. 

Both Driver’s Pay For Their Passenger’s Injuries

Unlike California, states like Florida, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania require individuals to carry enough insurance to cover damages to themselves and their passengers regardless of fault. If you’re driving in a ‘no-fault’ insurance state, it’s essential to understand the car accident laws where the collision happens and what damages you can pursue. 

Contact a Los Angeles Car Accident Attorney 

Determining liability for injuries sustained in a collision typically requires the skill, experience, and savvy of an experienced car accident attorney. If you were injured as a passenger in a car accident, you might have a solid case for maximum compensation for your damages. 


Contact Steinberg Injury Lawyers today at 1-800-350-8888 for a free consultation with a Los Angeles car accident attorney you can trust. 

Peter Steinberg
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Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Since 1982
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