3 Things to Do if You're in a Car Accident as a Passenger

3 Things to Do if You're in a Car Accident as a Passenger

You were with your friend, accidents happen and it's not uncommon to feel like you're betraying your friend by taking any form of legal action

You're riding in the car with your good friend. You're both jamming out to the latest Bruno Mars remix, and all of a sudden, you hear the tires screeching. Your head bounces forward, the airbags deploy and the rest of the events that follow seem like a complete blur.

Motor vehicle accidents are scary.

It takes a split second for an accident to occur. And as a passenger, it can often feel "wrong" to pursue damages. You were with your friend, accidents happen and it's not uncommon to feel like you're betraying your friend by taking any form of legal action.

1. Write Down the Events Leading to the Accident

Insurance companies will ask for your story. "What happened leading up to the accident?" And this question might be asked days later, or longer. It's hard enough for people to remember what they had for breakfast.

Trying to remember all of the important details leading up to an accident is difficult.

I recommend taking the time to write down your story to have a complete, thorough story to follow. It's important to have your story straight because one minor change from your original story will be used against you.

"Motor vehicle accidents including car accidents, motorcycle accidents and truck accidents are the most common type of personal injury claim. These claims are typically based on the theory of negligence," states Ankin Law Office LLC.

If you forget a small detail of an accident, this can lead to not being able to prove negligence.

2. File a Claim Against the Driver's Insurance

This is where a lot of passengers start to think twice about filing a claim. When it comes to insurance, there's a reason the driver pays: accidents. If the driver of the vehicle you were riding in was at-fault for the accident, you'll need to file a claim against his or her insurance policy.

Your friend's insurance will include liability, which will pay for:

  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Medical expenses

If the other driver is at-fault, you'll want to make a claim against his or her insurance. This is why you must call the police following an accident. A police report will provide you with all of the information you need to file a claim.

But there is one time when a claim may be difficult to file: the driver is related to you.

Insurance companies may not provide coverage in the event that the passenger is related to the driver.

3. File a Claim Against Your Own Insurance

Passengers that have their own car insurance may be able to file a claim against their own insurance. This is a less-obvious choice, but you may be able to file a claim on your own insurance if you have MedPay or PIP.

This may make your own rates go up, and there are obvious policy limits to consider.

PIP and MedPay are usually additional parts of a policy, so you'll need to add it to your policy. If you have health insurance, you can often use your own health insurance to cover your medical bills.

Always try to exhaust your auto benefits before using your health insurance to cover medical bills.

There's also the option of using your uninsured motorist insurance. Statistics show that 1-in-7 motorists in the United States are uninsured. If your friend or the opposing driver are uninsured, your policy's uninsured motorist insurance can help.

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How My Diabetes Taught Me That Worry Is Pointless

My life is in the hands of the Creator.

I am slowly running out of test strips.

Funny story about my prescription: It only ever refills once a month. So I'm attempting to make them stretch. Here's the problem with that one, though: I'm a paranoid diabetic.

My insulin dosage changed about a month ago. I was taking my long-lasting stuff right before I went to bed, so I was used to waking up in the middle of the night in the sixties or fifties. So, every time I woke up, I'd take my blood sugar, just to make sure. Since then, I've gone back to taking the long-lasting insulin in the morning, and my numbers have, overall, gotten better. I'm usually fairly solidly in the middle zone I need to be.

But I still check my blood sugar constantly.

See, the other day, I took a two-hour nap after one of my classes. I was at 204 when I went down (so not good, but also not really likely I'm going to slip low while I'm asleep). I woke up at 48. For those of you who aren't familiar with proper numbers for diabetes, that's really flipping low. In fact, I haven't been that low yet in the two years I've been diabetic.

Ever since I've been paranoid. I take my blood sugar every time I feel the slightest twinge of a weird feeling. It can be the exact opposite of what I remember being low feeling like. I'll still take it. While this isn't necessarily a bad idea, it's also kind of causing me to lose sleep at night and go through canisters of test strips at record speed when it's not necessary.

I felt like I was living on borrowed time.

After a few days of walking around feeling like maybe I wasn't supposed to wake up from that low and jumping at the slightest wind, convinced the nearest university vehicle was going to bowl me over in the next five seconds, I finally sat still and prayed.

God, I'm scared. I feel like I dodged a bullet. What if I wasn't supposed to dodge it? What am I supposed to do here?

And I felt this strange assurance: Rachel, I'm God. If you were meant to be home with me, you would be.

Some might call that threatening, but I call it relaxing. It means I can go day to day with the knowledge that the God of the universe holds my life in His hands, and as long as He still has something for me to accomplish on this earth, I'll be here. I can screw up daily, and He will still take me back and love me. He'll give me a second chance.

So, no, I haven't quite gotten to the point where I don't use my test strips generously. But I know there's a reason why I'm still here. And therefore, why should I worry? What should I fear?

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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When I Look At My Life Now, I Forget I Used To Be Suicidal

I used to want to kill myself over what people said. Now I am much stronger.

I was reading someone’s post celebrating how they haven’t self-harmed in years. I realized I haven’t self-harmed in years but I can’t remember the last time I celebrated it. It’s like I have almost completely forgotten that I used to be suicidal. I know it sounds awful, but I don’t know if I have blocked it out myself or if other people have done that for me.

Life used to be so hard and almost impossible. I remember crying myself to sleep every single night and wishing I was dead or that I was never born. I remember carving “worthless,” “crazy,” and “dramatic” into my legs because that was how everyone around me thought of me.

I remember being forced to go to therapy knowing what she was telling me would be pointless when my session was up and I had to go home. I remember trying to kill myself three times.

I still have scars, both visible and internal. I will never be able to love or trust anyone the way most people do. I will never be able to feel at home in my own house. I will never be able to get my childhood back. These open wounds will forever change my relationship with my family even if it’s just in my head.

But I don’t totally regret it. I reached the lowest point of my life as a child and now it can only get better. I am now so much stronger. I learned how to stand up for myself. I learned how to be who I am and not worry about what my family would think.

I was willing to kill myself over what people said to me and about me. I was trapped in my own body, in my own house, and in my own town and now I am free. I brush off what anyone thinks of me because it is my life, not theirs.

I left everything that was weighing me down and moved to a city where I didn't know anyone. This was everything I needed to forget that I was once suicidal. Now I am able to be myself and do what I love. I am surrounded by the greatest people who believe in me and push me to be a better version of my self every single day.

Life is so great and it seems like another person was suicidal, not me.

But it was me. I will have to work every day to overcome my depression and anxiety. But some days are better than others and so I am able to grow stronger and fight back harder.

Nothing that happens to me now could be as bad as what I faced growing up. So I laugh. I look my enemies in the face and laugh. Because they have no power.

National Suicide Prevention LifelineCall 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Akash Desai

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