Can a passenger recover damages for accident injuries caused by the driver in the State of West Virginia?
Yes, in West Virginia, if the driver of the vehicle is guilty of ordinary negligence, then passengers in the vehicle can recover damages from the insurance policy covering the vehicle. It is important to note however, that in situations where alcohol is involved, the passenger may be guilty of comparative negligence in causing his or her own injuries by getting into the car in the first place if there is a resulting alcohol-related car wreck. Additionally, passengers can be liable to other victims of the car wreck under certain circumstances if they allowed or encouraged the driver to drive impaired. See my earlier posts regarding alcohol and passengers.
– John H. Bryan, West Virginia Car Accident Attorney.