Albuquerque Auto Accident Lawyer Explains Passenger Rights in Car Crashes
Passengers injured in an Albuquerque auto accident have different rights than drivers. Even if the driver of the passenger’s vehicle did not run a red light or make a wide turn, that driver may still have some comparative fault for not avoiding the crash or contributing to the crash like driving above the speed limit. But a passenger is not operating the motor vehicle and almost always has no fault for the crash. This is important because the culpable fault of a party may reduce what damages that he or she is entitled to as compensation for personal injuries. Thus, drivers and passengers need to be treated differently in terms of legal representation.
Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we have represented many passengers in motor vehicle accidents throughout New Mexico. We have experts which can visit the scene of a crash and help determine liability, as well as other medical, economical, vocational, and life-care planning experts to help prove your damages. If you have been injured in New Mexico auto accident as a passenger, please call our experienced Albuquerque auto accident lawyers by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn how we can help protect your rights today.
Why is Comparative Fault Important, and When May Passengers Have Some Fault?
Comparative fault is very important in terms of a motor vehicle accident. New Mexico is a comparative fault state, which means that the degree of culpable conduct of the person injured is considered and it will lower an award of damages. For example, if a plaintiff is awarded $100,000 but found to be 40% at fault, the party will receive only $60,000. Frequently in most personal injury accidents like motor vehicle crashes or slip and falls, the injured person will have some degree of fault.
However, a passenger very rarely has comparative fault in a motor vehicle accident. This is because the passenger is not operating the motor vehicle. Unless the passenger is directly blocking or inhibiting the driver, or telling the driver or other motorists things that are not true (such as to go when there are cars coming), the passenger will most likely have no comparative fault at all.
This is important because a lawyer cannot representative clients who have adverse interests. Thus, a passenger injured in the car of a driver may have a claim against the driver. The lawyer cannot represent both parties because of this, and a passenger should not acquiesce to allow a lawyer do so. Doing this may infringe on the rights of the passenger.
Hurts in an Albuquerque Auto Accident as a Passenger? We Can Help You Today
If you have been seriously injured in any type of auto accident in New Mexico as a passenger, please call our Albuquerque auto accident lawyer to learn how we can help. We handle cases throughout New Mexico, including in Lordsburg, Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, or anywhere else. Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn how we can help. You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.