Pedestrian accidents are a serious and sadly prevalent issue. Injuries can be severe when a pedestrian is involved in an accident, and the resulting physical, emotional, and financial strain on the victim can be overwhelming.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, it is essential to understand your rights and the legal process for pursuing compensation from the at-fault party. The dedicated personal injury attorneys at The Law Office of Ben Evan in Suitland, Maryland, are committed to providing expert guidance and compassionate representation to pedestrians who have suffered injuries due to the negligence of others.
Arming yourself with knowledge about pedestrian accident claims is crucial for protecting your rights, navigating the legal process, and seeking the compensation you need for your recovery. Furthermore, this post will emphasize the benefits of working with an experienced personal injury attorney like the team at The Law Office of Ben Evan to guide you through each stage of your pedestrian accident case and fight for the justice you deserve.
Determining Liability in Pedestrian Accidents
Establishing liability is a critical element in any personal injury case, including pedestrian accidents. Liability can be assigned to various parties depending on the circumstances of the accident:
- Motorists: In many cases, drivers are responsible for pedestrian accidents due to failing to yield, speeding, or being distracted while driving. Plaintiffs must prove that the driver was negligent and that this negligence directly resulted in the pedestrian’s injuries.
- Bicyclists: Similar to motorists, bicyclists can be held liable for a pedestrian accident if their actions, such as ignoring traffic signals or riding on the sidewalk, contributed to the incident.
- Property Owners: In cases where poor maintenance or hazardous conditions on a property lead to a pedestrian accident, the property owner or manager may be held liable under premises liability law.
Understanding the nuances of negligence and liability in pedestrian accidents is one of the many reasons why working with an experienced personal injury attorney is beneficial.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Various factors can contribute to pedestrian accidents, some of which include:
- Distracted Driving: A driver’s attention may be diverted from the road due to texting, talking on the phone, or other distractions, increasing the risk of pedestrian accidents.
- Speeding: Excessive speed reduces a driver’s reaction time, making it difficult to avoid colliding with pedestrians.
- Alcohol or Drug Impairment: Impaired drivers are more likely to cause accidents due to a lack of focus, impaired judgment, and slow reaction times.
- Poorly Lit or Maintained Crossing Areas: Insufficient lighting or inadequate signage in crossing areas can make it difficult for drivers to see pedestrians, leading to accidents.
Types of Injuries and Compensation
Pedestrian accidents can result in various injuries, ranging from minor to severe. Some common injuries include:
- Broken Bones – Fractures are common in pedestrian accidents due to the impact force between the vehicle and the human body.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) – Closed head injuries, such as concussions or more severe TBIs, can result from the pedestrian’s head hitting the vehicle or the ground.
- Spinal Cord Injuries – Damage to the spine can lead to partial or complete paralysis, significantly impacting the victim’s life.
Victims of pedestrian accidents can seek compensation for the following damages:
- Medical Expenses: Costs of treatments, surgeries, medications, and ongoing medical care.
- Lost Wages: Compensation for time away from work during recovery or for a reduced ability to earn in the future due to the injuries.
- Pain and Suffering: A monetary value assigned to the physical and emotional distress experienced by the victim.
- Loss of Consortium: Compensation to the spouse or family members for the impact of the injury on the relationships.
Legal Steps in Filing a Pedestrian Accident Claim
Navigating the legal process for filing a pedestrian accident claim involves several critical steps:
- Gather Evidence: Document the accident scene, including photographs of the injuries, the vehicle, and the location where the incident occurred. Obtain contact information from any witnesses.
- Seek Medical Treatment: Promptly seek medical attention, ensuring the proper diagnosis and treatment of injuries. Keep a clear record of all medical visits, diagnoses, and expenses.
- Contact an Attorney: Retain a personal injury attorney with experience in pedestrian accident cases. They can help you understand your legal options, gather relevant evidence, and build the strongest case possible.
- File Your Claim: Your attorney will initiate the claims process, submitting your case to the relevant insurance company or liable party.
- Negotiate and Settle, or Go to Trial: Your attorney will negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf or, if necessary, litigate your case before a judge or jury to pursue the compensation you deserve.
Statute of Limitations and Impact on Your Claim
Each state has a statute of limitations governing a person has time to file a personal injury claim. In Maryland, victims typically have three years from the accident date to initiate a claim. Failure to do so within the stipulated timeframe may result in your case being dismissed, leaving you unable to recover any compensation.
Seek Expert Help from The Law Office of Ben Evan in Your Pedestrian Accident Case
Seeking expert help from a law firm is essential for any pedestrian accident case. Working with a qualified lawyer will help ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you deserve. A lawyer can help you understand the legal complexities of your case, advise you on the best course of action, represent you in court, and negotiate with insurance companies.
Additionally, a lawyer can help you obtain medical treatment if needed and inform you of potential sources of compensation. With their knowledge and experience, they can help you ensure that your case is handled correctly and that you get the justice you deserve.
Understanding the complexities and intricacies of pedestrian accident claims is crucial for ensuring a fair outcome and obtaining the compensation you deserve. With the guidance and expertise of the experienced personal injury attorneys at The Law Office of Ben Evan in Suitland, Maryland, you can successfully navigate the legal process and fight for justice. If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, do not hesitate to contact our accident and injury lawyers for expert representation and support in your journey toward healing and justice.