If I was at-fault for an accident but my passenger was not wearing their seatbelt, am I liable?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I was at-fault for an accident but my passenger was not wearing their seatbelt, am I liable?

All other passengers in my car were uninjured; the passengers in the car I hit were uninjured. It is in the state of AR, which requires seat belts. The “injured” passenger went to go eat lunch at a restaurant directly after.

Asked on August 30, 2011 Arkansas

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Since you were at fault in the accident, you would be liable for the passenger's injuries even though the passenger wasn't wearing a seatbelt.  It is not uncommon for injuries to manifest themselves sometime after the accident and not necessarily immediately after the accident.  The passenger's personal injury claim could include medical bills, compensation for pain and suffering, and wage loss.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will be used to document the nature and extent of the injury, and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  It would be advisable to refer the matter to your auto insurance company.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption