5 Things to Know About Your Rights as a Pedestrian Accident Victim
Florida is a popular place to explore on foot, but pedestrians on public roadways face risks anytime they find themselves near motor vehicle traffic. As the most vulnerable individuals on our roads, pedestrians also face greater risks of suffering catastrophic injuries when they are involved in traffic accidents, including death, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and more. Fortunately for those who have been seriously injured by a negligent driver, Florida provides legal pathways through which victims can pursue a financial recovery of their damages.
At Clark, Fountain, La Vista, Prather, Littky-Rubin & Whitman, our West Palm Beach-based personal injury lawyers represent seriously injured victims throughout the state in cases involving all types of preventable wrecks, including pedestrian accidents. Due to the overwhelming potential for devastating consequences in these types of accidents, we know that victims depend on proven and resourceful representation to recover their damages. We also know the importance of ensuring that they understand their rights.
If you or someone you love has been injured as a pedestrian, here are a few important things to know:
- Your right to compensation – As a victim of negligence, you have the legal right to pursue a personal injury case against the driver who caused you harm. These cases enable you to recover financially for any damages resulting from your accident and injury, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional injuries, and more.
- Compensation is never guaranteed – Although you have a right to compensation, you must remember that compensation is never guaranteed. This is due to the fact that insurance companies are corporations which prioritize profits over people and work to pay victims as little as they can. As such, working with a proven lawyer becomes essential in fighting back against insurers and securing the compensation you deserve.
- Fault and negligence – Personal injury claims are centered on proving that the negligence of another (such as a driver) more likely than not caused your accident and injuries. Proving fault and negligence can be done through meticulous investigations and a clear presentation of convincing evidence and arguments. Per Florida law, a person is considered negligent when they fail to act as a reasonable person would act under similar circumstances. Driving under the influence, as an example, is a clear act of negligence because any reasonable person would know intoxication increases crash risks.
- Comparative negligence – In some cases, insurance companies may attempt to leverage Florida comparative negligence laws when attempting to pay victims less. Comparative negligence, which splits fault between two parties, can reduce the amount of compensation you are eligible to receive if you contributed in any way to your own accident. For example, a pedestrian who is found to be 20% at fault for an accident would only be entitled to 80% of their damages. This may happen when a pedestrian was j-walking at the time of the crash, violated a traffic law, or were otherwise negligent in exercising reasonable care. Our legal team works swiftly to address allegations of pedestrians contributing to wrecks in order to maximize their compensation.
- You can work with an attorney – You have the right to legal representation when pursuing any matter in the civil justice system, including personal injury cases. Because pedestrians depend on full and fair compensation to cover their damages, and because insurers are aggressive in fighting back against claims, working with a proven lawyer can make all the difference in your case. At Clark, Fountain, La Vista, Prather, Littky-Rubin & Whitman, our legal team has extensive experience representing seriously injured pedestrians and leverages over 220 years of combined experience for the benefit of our clients. We also work on contingency fees, which means there are no up-front costs to hiring our team, and no fees unless we win.
If you have questions about your rights following a pedestrian accident, do not hesitate to contact our firm for a free case evaluation. We proudly serve clients throughout Palm Beach County and the surrounding areas of Florida.