Typically, when dealing with the aftermath of a car accident, the first thing you might consider is how either or both of the drivers played a role in its cause. However, passenger negligence may also be a factor. As a premier Texas car accident lawyer, Sutliff & Stout has worked on many car accident cases where the passenger was to blame. These cases often challenge the context between the driver and passenger and the passenger’s liability in the situation.
While most drivers would prefer not to involve their passengers in car accident litigation, sometimes it cannot be helped. In such situations, it is best to allow the legal professionals to handle it to avoid compromising your relationship with your passenger any more than it has already been impacted.
What is Passenger Negligence?
Passenger negligence occurs when someone sitting in the passenger seat of a vehicle behaves in a way that creates a dangerous situation for the driver or others on the road. Just because a passenger is not behind the wheel of a car does not mean that they do not bear some responsibility for contributing to safety on the road. If a passenger breaches their duty of care regarding vehicle safety, they may bear some financial responsibility for the collision.
Examples of such negligence include:
- Grabbing the steering wheel of the vehicle
- Causing the driver to look at a cell phone, map or other object while the vehicle is in motion
- Placing an object into the driver’s line of sight while driving
- Placing their hands over the driver’s eye while driving
- Throwing items out of the car window
- Opening the car door or exiting the vehicle while it is in motion or sitting in traffic
- Encouraging the driver to operate the vehicle while under the influence
Essentially, any action contributing to unsafe driving conditions for the driver and others on the road caused by the passenger may be held accountable for any ensuing incidents.
Why You Need an Experienced Texas Car Accident Lawyer
The truth is that it is implausible that you will feel comfortable involving your passenger in any pending litigation regarding your collision. However, it may be necessary to avoid financial liability yourself. This is one of the reasons hiring an experienced Texas car accident lawyer is critical. Since we don’t have a professional relationship with your passenger, we are more comfortable doing whatever needs to be done to resolve the case to your satisfaction.
This is imperative in situations where you are being sued by the other party involved in the crash or dealing with injuries as a result. We may be able to show that your passenger’s negligence caused the crash to ensure that you are not on the hook for the financial aftermath of the accident. We can be objective in the situation, and since we don’t have a personal relationship with the passenger, we are not emotionally invested the way you might be. This allows us to protect your interests.
What to Expect in a Passenger Negligence Case
When you hire a Texas car accident attorney on which you can rely, you can expect that we will handle all communication for your case. This means that we will speak with your passenger, all involved insurance companies and the other party involved in the collision. You can focus instead on healing and doing whatever is necessary to get your life back on track after the crash.
We will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding the accident and defend your interests if any third parties attempt to pin the accident responsibility on you. We will also gather and analyze evidence relating to the collision to determine how your passenger may have been negligent and work with experts to determine the extent of your injuries and their worth in terms of damages. We will invest the time and resources to get the job done on your behalf.
Get Help from a Texas Car Accident Lawyer
If you’ve been involved in a collision due to the actions of a passenger, a case review from a reputable Texas car accident lawyer can help you determine where you stand. Sutliff & Stout has pursued numerous passenger negligence cases. We understand the delicate nature of these situations, especially if you have a relationship of any kind with your passenger. Allowing us to handle the claim to avoid further complicating the relationship between you and your passenger is just one reason to trust our firm with your passenger negligence case. We have the compassion and dedication necessary to resolve your case with the best possible outcome for your circumstances and all other involved parties.
Learn more through a comprehensive case review. Schedule your complimentary consultation today by calling (713) 987-7111 or reach out online to learn more.