Being hit by a vehicle as a pedestrian can lead to severe injuries and steep medical bills. If you or a loved one has been injured as a pedestrian, you may be entitled to compensation. A pedestrian accident lawyer can help you understand your legal options and fight for maximum compensation.

Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents

There are a few common causes of pedestrian accidents:

  • Driver negligence – The driver was distracted, speeding, or driving recklessly and hit the pedestrian. This accounts for most pedestrian accidents.
  • Poor visibility – At night or during bad weather, drivers may not see pedestrians crossing the road. Wearing reflective gear can help.
  • Dangerous roads – Poor lighting, high speeds, and lack of crosswalks create hazards for pedestrians.
  • Pedestrian error – Pedestrians also sometimes make mistakes, like crossing against the light or outside of crosswalks.

Pedestrian Accident Injuries

Pedestrians lack the protection of a vehicle, so accident injuries can be severe or even fatal. Common pedestrian accident injuries include:

  • Broken bones – Legs and arms are very vulnerable to fractures and breaks.
  • Spinal cord injuries – The force of impact can crush vertebrae or sever the spinal cord. This can lead to paralysis.
  • Head and brain trauma – Pedestrians often hit their heads on the roadway or vehicle, causing concussions, bleeding, and other trauma.
  • Internal organ damage – Blunt force impact can lead to lacerated livers and kidneys, collapsed lungs, and other serious organ damage.

The Role of a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

A pedestrian accident lawyer can provide legal assistance after you are struck by a vehicle. Key services the lawyer provides include:

  • Investigating the accident – Gathering police reports, video footage, and witness statements to establish fault.
  • Proving liability – Demonstrating that the driver was negligent and responsible for your injuries and damages.
  • Filing insurance claims – Submitting claims to auto insurance providers and negotiating a fair settlement.
  • Bringing a lawsuit – If a settlement cannot be reached, filing a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
  • Handling legal paperwork – Drafting court documents, communicating with insurance companies, and managing all case paperwork.

Steps After a Pedestrian Accident

If you are struck by a vehicle as a pedestrian, some important first steps include:

  • Seeking medical care – Get evaluated and treated for any injuries right away.
  • Reporting the accident – Call the police and file an official report.
  • Documenting the scene – Take photos and video of the accident scene and your injuries.
  • Contacting an attorney – Call a pedestrian accident lawyer for legal help.
  • Notifying insurance – Inform your health insurance and auto insurance providers about the accident.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a pedestrian accident lawyer cost?

Most lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only collect if you receive compensation. The fee is typically 30-40% of your final settlement amount.

How long do I have to file a claim after a pedestrian accident?

Each state sets its own statute of limitations – the deadline to file a claim. This ranges from 1-6 years generally. Consult a lawyer about your specific case.

Can I still recover damages if I was partly at fault?

Most states follow comparative negligence rules. So even if you were partially at fault, you can still recover compensation reduced by your percentage of fault.

What damages can I recover after a pedestrian accident?

Typical damages include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, disability or disfigurement, and in the worst cases, wrongful death damages.

Should I give a recorded statement to the insurance company?

Avoid giving a recorded statement until you have counsel. The insurer may try to twist your words against you. Let your lawyer handle communications.

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