I Was a Passenger Injured In A Car Accident, What Are My Rights?


Our lawyers have handled many car accident cases in Minnesota where our client was a passenger in one of the vehicles involved in the collision. The first question our attorneys usually get is: What are my rights when I was a passenger in a car involved in a car crash? The second question the lawyer usually get is, what are my rights when I was a passenger and the driver of the car I was in was at fault and caused the auto collision? This issue can come up if you are a passenger in your friend’s car, or if you are driving your child and cause an accident, or you are being driven by your mother or father or other relative. Injury accidents can happen in a one car accident, or even where a car hits a deer.


Your first rights when you are a passenger injured in a car crash come from Minnesota’s No-Fault law. MN’s No-Fault law requires that in most cases your medical bills and lost wages get paid by YOUR automobile insurance, regardless of who caused the accident and even if you did not own one of the cars involved in the collision. If you did not own an insured vehicle at the time of the accident, your No-Fault insurance will come from a family member you live with who owns an insured vehicle. If you don’t live with someone who owns an insured vehicle, then the No-Fault coverage comes from the vehicle you were in at the time of the accident. If the car you were in is not insured, you may still be entitled to No-Fault coverage through Minnesota’s Assigned Risk Plan. For more information on No-Fault coverage, see our No-Fault insurance page or call us and an experienced attorney will explain your rights after a car accident under the Minnesota No Fault law.


In addition to No-Fault Coverage, you will also be entitled to compensation from the insurance for the owner and driver of the car that was at fault in causing the accident, even if it was the driver of the car you were in and even if you are related to the driver. This additional compensation is for medical bills beyond the No-Fault coverage, additional wage loss, future medical bills and lost wages, and pain and suffering. Even if you are a passenger in a car driven by your mother or father, or the driver is your husband or wife, or other relative, their auto insurance will compensate you if the car accident was their fault. This is true even if you live with them at the time of the crash. This does not necessarily mean you will have to sue the driver of the car –  our auto accident attorneys often settle cases with the insurance company without the need for a lawsuit. If you are a passenger on a motorcycle, you have rights as well. There are some limitations on when and how you can bring a claim for compensation, but when you call our office, an experienced car accident lawyer will explain the MN legal requirements to you. Motorcycle passengers injured in accidents can bring a claim against the driver of the bike there were on as well as the car that hit them.

If the car accident was the other driver’s fault but that driver is uninsured, the passenger may have the right to Uninsured benefits from the vehicle they were in, or their own automobile insurance or the insurance of a relative they live with. If you were a passenger injured in a car accident in Minnesota, you are welcome to call us and one of our lawyers will provide you with a free consultation and help you determine if you qualify for this type of insurance under MN law.

The insurance coverage issues can be complicated. Pam Rochlin and David Rochlin are Minnesota personal injury lawyers with over 25 years’ experience successfully helping people injured in a car accident. We have handled hundreds of personal injury cases, including many involving passengers injured in car accidents. You are welcome to call us anytime for a free consultation and an attorney will discuss your case with you and explain your rights more fully. We have offices in Minneapolis, Woodbury, Edina, and St. Louis Park. We also meet people at their homes in St. Paul, Roseville, Apple Valley, Lakeville, Burnsville, Chanhassen, Chaska, Maple Grove, Rogers, and other areas throughout Minnesota.