Q: I was an injured passenger in an accident where the other driver was drunk. Our lawyer says we must join our case. Why?
The drunk driver was at fault. My 5 yr. old and I were both injured. I was told the policy was for only 30 thou and we were only going to be compensated "a few grand".
A: The situation as you outlined may be the outcome. From a practical standpoint, the recovery on a case is typically limited to the insurance proceeds. You should sit down with your attorney to discuss your legal rights as well as the best practical approach to proceed forward with the case. You may also want to discuss the matter with another local attorney to get a second opinion.
A: Based on the scenario described the three of you are victims of of the same drunk driver. It would make sense to join the cases in this scenario, as opposed to a scenario where liability was disputed between the driver of your vehicle and the other adverse driver. That being said, I don't know that the cases have to be joined. These questions should be presented to your attorney and you should ask for a full accounting of all liens, medical bills, fees and costs that will be paid. It is also good practice to try to negotiate where possible, especially in cases like these, where the adverse insurance has minimum limits.
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