Carmichael Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Pedestrian injuries and deaths from accidents in California are statistically more likely than in any other state in the nation. Pedestrian deaths accounted for a shocking 22 percent of all auto accidents, according to California's Department of Motor Vehicles.Common Causes of Serious Pedestrian Accidents
Many pedestrian accidents involve an automobile colliding with a pedestrian at a crosswalk or on a sidewalk. If you are a pedestrian who enjoys a walk, run, or jog regularly, then you know many hazards are extremely dangerous for pedestrians. One of the most dangerous scenarios is when someone is attempting to cross the street in a busy intersection. Even pedestrians using a designated crosswalk are exposed to a potentially life-altering injury by a negligent driver.Pedestrians Have the Right of Way
Pedestrians have the right of way at an intersection with a marked or unmarked crosswalk. According to California Vehicle Code Section 21950, a driver must yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian when they are walking across the street within an area or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection. A driver approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk must exercise “all due care” and reduce their speed appropriately, or take other actions necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian.
In addition to the right-of-way rule stipulated above, drivers owe a heightened duty of care when traveling in areas where children are around. For example, when a driver travels by a school, a park, or a residential area, they need to be especially cautious and vigilant.Bodily Injuries Suffered by Pedestrian Accidents
When a human body is hit by a motor vehicle weighing in excess of 5,000 pounds, the pedestrian usually bears the brunt of the damage. This is to be expected since our bodies are not capable of withstanding the impact of an oncoming car. Pedestrian accidents often result in catastrophic injuries including:
- Fractured Bones
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Spinal cord injury or nerve damage
- Facial lacerations and eye damage
Watch the following video for tips on how to stay safe while out walking.Pursuing Damages Caused by Your Pedestrian Accident
If you or a loved one was hit by a car and suffered a debilitating, life-altering injury, you have the right to pursue financial restitution for your harms and losses. The types of harms and losses generally recoverable through a personal injury claim include:
- Medical expenses, which include current medical bills (e.g., trip to the emergency room, prescription drugs, trips to your primary care physician) and reasonably foreseeable future medical expenses.
- Lost income due to time missed from work and diminished earning capacity: generally, any wages lost, while you were hospitalized or recovering from the collision, are recoverable. Furthermore, if the accident caused a serious injury that resulted in temporary or permanent disability, you could potentially pursue future lost wages.
- Pain and suffering, which includes compensation for your mental anguish, stress, anxiety, and inconvenience.
In addition to the economic and non-economic damages described above, you may be able to pursue punitive damages. These are damages designed not to make you whole, but rather to рuniѕh the driver who caused the accident that injured you or a loved one. An award of punitive damages is meant to show others similarly situated to the defendant that their reckless actions have major consequences. But you need to keep in mind that the pursuit of punitive damages is fairly rare in California. That is because the courts require you to prove that the defendant’s conduct was particularly heinous and shocking to pursue punitive damages. Not only that, but the evidence must be overwhelmingly clear that their actions were deplorable.Watch Out for California’s Statutory Deadline
Under California law, an injured pedestrian is required to file a civil personal injury lawsuit within two years of the accident. This means if you fail to file suit in two years, your case will likely be barred from going forward. This is known as the statute of limitations. This time period is even shorter if you or a loved one was hit by a city or state governmental entity like a city bus or roadwork maintenance vehicle. In this scenario, you must notify the government of your injury claim within six months from the date of the collision. While these filing deadlines might seem lengthy, they are not, especially when you factor in the additional time for a Carmichael personal injury lawyer to investigate and examine your potential case. That is why it is so important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible to allow enough time to conduct a thorough investigation of your accident.Lawyer Adheres to No Legal Fee If No Recovery Policy
Some people hesitate to reach out and speak to a personal injury attorney because they have heard stories about how they will be on the hook for an outrageous hourly billable rate or large retainer fee. Many big defense lawyers work that way, but not personal injury attorneys. The overwhelming majority of Carmichael personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means the lawyer’s fee is contingent upon them securing a financial recovery for you. If they are unsuccessful, you are not on the hook for their legal bills. This structure makes sense because it aligns the incentives of you and your lawyer. Both of you want to obtain a successful financial outcome to your claim.
Getting hit by a vehicle can be a devastating event that alters your future irrevocably. Many pedestrian accident victims suffer permanent, debilitating injuries such as paralysis, nerve damage, or head wounds. A catastrophic injury may take months or years to recover from, if at all. This is why you should hold the driver responsible for their reckless actions by hiring an experienced Carmichael pedestrian accident lawyer like me, Ed Smith. I am ready and able to take on the driver’s insurance company. I have over 30 years of practical legal experience, and I have represented clients in and around Carmichael.Carmichael Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
I’m Ed Smith, a pedestrian accident attorney in Carmichael. If you or one of your loved one has suffered a pedestrian injury, please reach out to me for free, friendly advice at 916.921.6400 or 800.404.5400.
I belong to the Million Dollar Forum. This group of injury lawyers has settled cases or won verdicts that exceeded $1 million.
I'm also a member of the Top One Percent, a National Association of Distinguished Counsel.
Take a look at my verdicts and settlements.
Visit my website: www.autoaccident.com
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Editor's Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy. [cha 4.3.19]