If my daughter was a passenger in an injury accident with an uninsuredteenage driver, who is responsible to pay medical expenses?

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If my daughter was a passenger in an injury accident with an uninsuredteenage driver, who is responsible to pay medical expenses?

We found out that either the family has no coverage or they didn’t add their teenage son to their policy. We’ve had extensive medical bills so far. We have auto coverage and our daughter is listed on our policy. We also have health insurance. Who pays?

Asked on December 21, 2011 under Personal Injury, Kansas

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Here is the problem. Usually this is a no-brainer because usually there is insurance coverage on the driver. Here, the teenager is hopefully a minor. If a minor and he has had prior accidents, your chances are higher that the parents' insurance company may be forced to pay especially if the vehicle was covered by the insurance separate and apart from the driver. You and your daughter will need to sue anyone and everyone without using your insurance or health insurance. First, you hire an attorney to sue the teenager, the parents, the parents' motor vehicle insurance carrier and any other driver and his or her insurance company if this was a multi-vehicle accident. Then, your lawyer will decide if the medical bills will need to be on some sort of delayed payment schedule or lien until the matter is settled. Your insurance may not cover her as a passenger in another vehicle but you can certainly check to ease your mind. Further, your health insurance coverage is a good resource for medical bills but the amounts sued for will include your medical bills, regardless of whether insurance pays it or not. The strategy should be up to your counsel because your counsel will be able to determine what state laws will apply and what is the regular custom and practice in your state for such accident situations.


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