When drivers are not careful, especially in parking lots, parking garages, and traffic intersections, they may inadvertently cause a pedestrian accident, which leaves a pedestrian seriously injured and sometimes dead.

These accidents typically happen when drivers become distracted, drive in a reckless or intoxicated manner, or violate various traffic laws.

If you recently sustained injuries in a pedestrian accident, consult a Gainesville pedestrian accident attorney in your area as quickly as possible. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and other losses through a pedestrian accident case.

Your lawyer can immediately start investigating the circumstances of your accident by obtaining medical records, medical bills, and other documentation for your case. Your lawyer can pursue an insurance claim on your behalf, depending on the state where your accident happened.

For example, in a no-fault jurisdiction like Florida, your lawyer may file a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) claim in your case. However, if you suffered a permanent or disabling injury, you may be eligible to file a third-party personal injury claim against the at-fault driver who caused your accident and severe injuries.

If you file a personal injury claim, your lawyer can aggressively negotiate with the insurance adjuster for favorable settlement compensation in your case. Additionally, your attorney may file a lawsuit and pursue litigation if the insurance company refuses to compensate you appropriately for your injuries.

Throughout every step of the process, your attorney can aggressively advocate for you and work to pursue a favorable pedestrian accident settlement for you to become whole again.

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Settling a Pedestrian Accident Claim

The time it takes to settle a pedestrian accident claim will depend on various factors, including the type of claim you are filing and the jurisdiction where your accident happened.

Other factors that may affect the length of time it takes to reach a favorable settlement with an insurance company include:

  • The time it takes you to complete all of your medical treatment and physical therapy
  • How long it takes to obtain copies of your medical treatment records, medical bills, and other documentation pertinent to your case
  • The willingness of the insurance company adjuster to settle your case in a way that is favorable to you
  • Whether you are filing a third-party personal injury claim where litigation may become necessary
  • The time it takes to complete an accident investigation, especially if the insurance company is disputing fault for the accident in a third-party claim
  • The specific insurance company or adjuster with whom you are dealing.

Retaining an experienced pedestrian accident attorney to represent you in your legal matter significantly increases your chances of obtaining a streamlined and efficient case result.

Your attorney can handle every aspect of the claims-filing and negotiation processes for you and, if necessary, pursue timely litigation on your behalf.

MMI and Pedestrian Accident Settlements

Another issue affecting the timeline of your settlement is your medical treatment and improvement.

You should reach Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) before considering a car accident settlement offer. This point signifies that your medical condition has stabilized, allowing for a more accurate assessment of long-term effects and future medical needs.

Accepting a settlement before MMI may result in insufficient compensation. A seasoned pedestrian accident lawyer can help navigate this process, ensuring that the settlement adequately addresses all present and future medical expenses and losses related to the accident.

How Do Pedestrian Accidents Happen?

Pedestrian accidents usually happen when drivers exhibit careless and reckless driving maneuvers, especially in areas with busy intersections and numerous nearby pedestrians.

One common cause of local pedestrian accidents is traffic law violations. For example, when drivers speed through a traffic intersection, parking lot, or parking garage, they significantly increase their chances of hitting a pedestrian.

Similarly, many pedestrian accidents happen when drivers fail to yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian who is lawfully present in a traffic intersection crosswalk.

Another common cause of pedestrian accidents is when a driver is distracted while behind the wheel. Distracted driving can take several different forms. For example, a driver may look away from the road to text, make calls, follow GPS, pay attention to passengers, or even let their mind wander.

Unfortunately, these activities cause drivers to lose their mental focus or cause them to physically take their eyes off the road. When a driver engages in distracted vehicle operation near a traffic intersection or other area where a pedestrian is likely present, they may quickly bring about a pedestrian collision.

Pedestrian accidents can also happen when drivers exhibit road rage or reckless driving maneuvers. For example, if a driver attempts to pass other traffic or get through a traffic light before it changes to red, they may fail to see a pedestrian in the vicinity and cause a serious or potentially fatal accident.

Finally, some pedestrian accidents happen when drivers are under the influence of alcohol or drugs while they are behind the wheel. In most cases of passenger vehicle drivers, an individual who has a blood alcohol concentration of at least 0.08 percent and who is twenty-one years of age or older is legally intoxicated. 

Drivers with a high blood alcohol concentration frequently exhibit various symptoms that prevent them from seeing pedestrians and cause them to drive carelessly and recklessly.

For example, an intoxicated driver may experience blurred vision or dizziness, preventing them from seeing a pedestrian on the sidewalk or at a traffic intersection crosswalk.

Additionally, a drunk driver may experience delayed reflexes, delayed reaction time, poor muscular coordination, impaired judgment, and limited concentration. Consequently, even if the driver observes a nearby pedestrian, they may be unable to stop their vehicle before crashing.

If you sustained injuries in a pedestrian accident due to negligence, consult a pedestrian accident attorney in your area as soon as possible to improve your chances of a fair settlement.

Your lawyer can investigate the circumstances of your accident and, if appropriate, retain a certified accident reconstructionist who can thoroughly investigate the accident circumstances and draft a report about exactly what occurred and who was responsible.

Your personal injury lawyer can then file the appropriate insurance claim on your behalf and begin pursuing the fair monetary damages you deserve for your injuries and losses.

Where Do Pedestrian Accidents Frequently Occur?

Serious pedestrian accidents can happen in various locations, but they are especially common at traffic intersections, particularly those with crosswalks. 

Pedestrian accidents may also happen in alleyways, parking lots, and garages. In addition, they are frequently common along trails – and on sidewalks, especially when a negligent or distracted driver jumps the curb and immediately strikes a pedestrian.

If you or someone you care about has suffered injuries in a pedestrian accident that occurred in one of these locations, you are not alone.

A compassionate and experienced pedestrian accident lawyer can review your circumstances with you and file the appropriate claim on your behalf. Your attorney can then negotiate with insurance company representatives for the fair monetary compensation you need and deserve.

Injuries in a Pedestrian Accident

Individuals in pedestrian accidents frequently fall to the ground due to the significant force involved.

Since pedestrians do not have an outer barrier or protective covering that surrounds them in an accident scenario, they are very likely to strike the ground and suffer extremely serious and sometimes permanent injuries.

The injuries that a pedestrian accident victim sustains will usually depend on the force of the collision and how they fall on the ground (along with the surface on which they fall).

Some of the most common injuries in pedestrian accidents include broken bones, rib fractures, eye injuries, mouth and teeth injuries, traumatic head and brain injuries, cognitive impairments, internal bleeding, internal organ damage, bruises, road rash injuries, spinal cord injuries, complete and incomplete paralysis injuries, and death.

If you or a person you care about suffered injuries in a pedestrian accident that an irresponsible driver caused, you should first obtain medical treatment at a hospital emergency room and follow through with the treatment recommendations that your healthcare provider makes.

For example, you may consult:

  • Your primary care physician
  • A medical specialist, such as an orthopedic doctor or neurologist
  • A physical or occupational therapist.

Your medical provider can develop a treatment plan and prescribe appropriate medical care, such as a medical procedure to correct your injuries.

By seeking continuous treatment for your injuries and waiting for a medical provider to formally discharge you, you heighten your chances of making a full medical recovery and getting the full monetary damages you deserve from the insurance company handling your case.

However, if you fail to seek prompt medical treatment after your accident or do not follow through with your medical treatment, the insurance company adjuster handling your case may be skeptical of your injuries and refuse to compensate you fairly.

While you are attending medical appointments and focusing on making your recovery, your personal injury attorney can advocate for you and begin pursuing the financial compensation you deserve to recover in your case.

How Much Compensation Can I Recover in a Pedestrian Accident Third-party Claim?

If you are eligible to file a third-party personal injury claim against the at-fault driver based on negligence, you may be eligible to receive various types of monetary damages.

First, your lawyer must establish that the driver was negligent in some way, such as by violating one or more traffic laws and regulations. Your lawyer must also demonstrate that both the accident and your claimed injuries directly resulted from the driver’s negligence or reckless behavior.

Since every pedestrian accident claim or lawsuit is different, certain pedestrians may recover more or less compensation than others. The total monetary settlement award or litigation result you receive will likely depend on the seriousness of your accident, the seriousness of your injuries, and the total cost of your medical treatment and lost income.

First, you can claim economic damages to compensate for past and anticipated medical costs and lost earnings or loss of earning capacity.

Additionally, you may file a successful claim for non-economic damages. The purpose of these damages is to compensate you for all the intangible losses related to your pedestrian accident injuries.

Some of the most common non-economic damages that pedestrian accident victims may recover include monetary compensation for: 

  • Mental and emotional distress
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement
  • Long-term or lifetime care costs
  • Past and future pain and suffering
  • Inconvenience
  • Loss of spousal companionship and consortium
  • Loss of the ability to use a body part
  • Scarring
  • Lost quality of life.

Your attorney can determine the likely amount of monetary compensation you may receive through settlement or litigation. Your attorney will then handle every step of the case moving forward and work hard to maximize your overall monetary award.

Contact a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Right Away

Steven A. Bagen Attorney for Pedestrian Accident Cases near Gainesville, Florida area
Steven A. Bagen, Pedestrian Accident Lawyer in the Gainesville, Florida area

You should never try to negotiate with an insurance company on your own. Insurance companies are often large, for-profit enterprises that might spend a lot of money producing commercials that depict them as being on your side, but those companies are not.

The insurance company will almost certainly try to take advantage of accident victims who don’t have legal help.

In any pedestrian accident claim or lawsuit you file, time is of the essence. Specifically, according to the statute of limitations, an injured pedestrian accident victim must file a lawsuit within two years, beginning on the date of their accident. 

If you file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations has already expired in your case, the court will probably dismiss your legal matter and prevent you from recovering any monetary damages. Therefore, act as quickly as possible to retain qualified legal counsel to handle your case.

A skilled personal injury attorney in Gainesville can be an invaluable help in maximizing your overall monetary award.

First, your lawyer can investigate the circumstances of your pedestrian accident and determine the type of insurance claim you may file. Your attorney can handle the settlement negotiation process for you.
Finally, if you are filing a third-party personal injury claim, your lawyer can litigate your case through the state court system and resolve it quickly.