Skip to main content
Personal Injury

How much compensation can you get for a pedestrian accident?

By February 12, 2024March 6th, 2024No Comments

Nearly 7,500 pedestrians died in auto accidents in a recent year in the U.S., and thousands more suffered at least one injury. Pedestrians usually have the right of way when crossing the street and using sidewalks. But if a driver violates their duty of care and hits a pedestrian, there can be a devastating accident.

If a driver hits you as a pedestrian, you may wonder how much compensation you can receive. Learn more about pedestrian accidents in this post. Then, contact an experienced pedestrian accident attorney to review your case at no cost.

Schedule A Free Consultation

What Happens When A Driver Hits A Pedestrian?

How much compensation can you get for a pedestrian accidentIf a driver hits a pedestrian on the road, in a parking lot, or in a crosswalk, there’s a chance they violated the law. It is possible for a pedestrian to be at fault in a pedestrian accident, but it’s more common for the driver to be in the wrong. Unfortunately, many pedestrian accident victims are left with devastating injuries and are unable to work or enjoy life for months, even years.

If a driver hits you as a pedestrian, you can hold them responsible in a claim or lawsuit. Your claim can compensate you for your medical bills, lost earnings, and pain and suffering. You also can receive money for future medical care and lost earnings if you have a long-term or permanent disability from the accident.

What Are The Most Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries?

A car hitting an unprotected pedestrian on the street or in a crosswalk is a horrific sight. The car may slam into the person, causing them to smash into the ground or even fly over the windshield. It isn’t surprising that most pedestrian accidents involve severe injuries that require ample compensation for the best recovery. Unsurprisingly, most pedestrian accident victims hire an experienced personal injury attorney to obtain the most money possible. Common pedestrian accident injuries are:

Neck, Face, And Head

What Are The Most Common Pedestrian Accident InjuriesMany pedestrian accident injuries involve the neck, face, and head. These injuries often happen from the upper body hitting the car, ground, or another object. About 38 percent of pedestrians have injuries to the neck, face, or head. Some of these injuries include head trauma, brain injury, concussion, spinal cord injuries, jaw fractures, fractured skull, shoulder displacement, and lacerations.

Lower Extremities

The lower body is often hit first in a pedestrian accident. The pedestrian may suffer severe injuries to their thighs, knees, calves, ankles, and feet. The person might have broken legs, hips, torn ligaments, pelvis fractures, and even crushed legs and feet if the car ran them over.

Upper Extremities

If the pedestrian hits the hood or windshield, they also may have injuries to the upper extremities. Common injuries are to the arms, wrists, and hands as the pedestrian tries to protect themselves. They might have broken bones, cuts, scrapes, and road rash. They also may have injuries to the chest, such as broken ribs, internal bleeding, and organ damage.

How Do Pedestrian Accidents Happen?

Pedestrian accidents happen for a variety of reasons. In most cases, the driver makes an error behind the wheel that leads to the accident, including:

  • Drivers not yielding the right of way at intersections and crosswalks. A common example is a driver turning right on red, not stopping, and not seeing the pedestrian behind another vehicle
  • Speeding
  • Drunk driving
  • Fatigued driving
  • Distracted driving, such as by a cell phone
  • Poor weather conditions
  • Poor road design
  • Vehicle defects
  • Impaired visibility

Your car accident attorney will investigate the accident and review the evidence to understand how the accident happened. Most pedestrian accidents happen because of driver error, so that party is usually responsible for paying damages to the accident victim.

What Is The Process During A Pedestrian Accident Claim Or Lawsuit?

A pedestrian accident attorney can seek financial justice after being struck by a car. There are two ways it can happen, assuming the driver was at fault:

  • Filing an auto insurance claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Then, your attorney negotiates a settlement based on your demonstrated injuries and damages.
  • Filing a personal injury lawsuit against the driver if settlement negotiations fail.

Proving The Driver Was At Fault

Filing a successful pedestrian accident claim or lawsuit means showing the driver was liable for the accident. As a driver, they are responsible for driving in a way that keeps others safe. If they run a red light, speed, or don’t stop at a crosswalk and hit you, they can be liable for your injuries. Your attorney will rely on various evidence to prove fault in the pedestrian accident, such as:

  • Pictures and videos of the crash scene, vehicle damages, and injuries
  • Police report about the accident
  • Medical records from all treatments you received for your injuries
  • Eyewitness statements from the crash scene
  • Any paperwork and bills that show your expenses and damages from the accident
  • Income statements and paystubs to show your lost income from the accident

Your attorney will use the evidence above to prove there are legal grounds to hold the driver liable for your injuries. In most pedestrian accidents, this means showing:

  • The driver owed you a duty of care. For instance, a driver has a duty to stop at crosswalks when the pedestrian has the right of way.
  • The driver breached their duty of care. For example, you might show that the driver ran a red light and hit you in the crosswalk when you had the right of way. Your lawyer can prove this by obtaining the police report, eyewitness testimony, and physical evidence at the scene demonstrating what happened.
  • You have injuries and damages from the breach of duty of care. Injuries and damages may be injuries, medical expenses, and lost earnings.

What Happens When The Driver Is Liable?

If the driver was at fault for the pedestrian accident, they or their insurance company will be liable for your damages. These may include:

  • Medical bills that you have from your doctor visits and treatments for injuries
  • Time that you lost at work because of your injuries and doctor appointments
  • Property damage from the accident, such as a totaled vehicle
  • Pain and suffering, including mental and physical discomfort
  • Lost future earnings and future medical expenses

How Much Is A Pedestrian Accident Worth?

How Much Is A Pedestrian Accident WorthThe value of your case depends on many things. On average, there is no way to say how much a pedestrian accident is worth. One case can be worth a few thousand dollars, while another can be worth hundreds of thousands. Some of the things that determine what the pedestrian case is worth are:

  • How severe your injuries are. Many pedestrian accidents involve severe injuries, including back and neck injuries, broken bones, severe road rash, internal injuries, dislocated joints, head and spine trauma, etc. Pedestrian accidents are often worth more than regular auto accidents because the injuries are serious and expensive to treat.
  • How much time have you missed from work? If you have severe injuries, you might have months of lost work time.
  • How much future medical care and rehabilitation is needed? People with severe injuries can need months or years of medical care and rehab.
  • The amount of insurance coverage available. Many drivers only carry the least amount of insurance coverage. You may have more damages than there is insurance coverage available. If that is the case, you may have to file a lawsuit against the driver to recover additional damages.
  • Your attorney’s skill and experience. Your best move is to hire an experienced pedestrian accident attorney with impressive settlements and jury verdicts. You want an attorney who is a skilled negotiator and litigator so you can get the most compensation.

The best way to understand your case’s value is to review the accident with your car accident attorney. They will review how the accident happened, who was at fault, and your degree of injuries to get an idea of the possible case value.

Keep in mind that most personal injury cases end in settlement. So, you can ultimately receive less than the full case value in exchange for getting the case resolved and money in your pocket. If the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, you may take the case to court and let the jury decide.

If the jury rules against you, you get nothing. Your attorney will advise you whether it’s in your best interest to accept a particular settlement, continue negotiating, or go to court.

Payment Options After A Pedestrian Accident

One of the most stressful parts of a pedestrian accident is understanding how your injuries and damages will be paid for. There are several options:

Your Health Insurance

If you have health insurance, you can use it to pay for your injuries and medical expenses. Your health insurance company will cover medical bills for any covered treatments, minus any copays. Remember that you can only get your health insurance company to cover medical bills, not pain and suffering and lost earnings. Your health insurance company can demand reimbursement later if the driver is at fault.

Your Auto Insurance

If you have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or Med Pay coverage, you can tap these to cover your initial medical expenses. But the limit may only be a few thousand dollars. Your auto insurance company can demand reimbursement from the at-fault driver later.

At-Fault Driver’s Insurance Company

When the driver is at fault, their insurance company may cover your medical expenses and lost earnings. You or your attorney can negotiate a settlement with the insurance company for your medical expenses, lost earnings, and pain and suffering. However, you may need to take the insurance company to court if they don’t offer a fair settlement.

How A Pedestrian Accident Attorney Can Help You

Pedestrian accident injuries and damages can be severe, so fair compensation can be quite high. This means there’s a good chance you’ll need to negotiate with insurance companies and attorneys for the liable driver. Expect them to try to lowball you and get you to sign away your legal rights. It’s common for insurance companies to take advantage of injured pedestrians who lack legal representation. Retaining a pedestrian accident attorney to protect your rights and get the most money is usually best.

In most pedestrian accident cases, getting fair compensation means filing an auto insurance claim or a lawsuit against the liable driver. Theoretically, you can negotiate your own settlement, but the insurance company will try to exploit you. Your pedestrian accident attorney can take over negotiations and fight for the most compensation for you. Your lawyer has a better idea of what the claim is worth and can threaten to file suit if a fair settlement isn’t offered.

Your attorney will use their experience and access to various legal and financial experts to calculate the full value of your claim. They also will work with medical professionals to understand the severity of your injuries and the medical care you’ll need in the future.

Your attorney can file a personal injury lawsuit if the insurance company doesn’t offer enough money. This is where your attorney’s skill and experience are vital. Your attorney understands the state and local court rules that must be followed when filing a lawsuit and for filing various motions and pleas.

There is also a formal discovery period where your attorney will use their skill and resources to discover everything about the case. There also is going through the trial itself. It’s not just about knowing and following court rules and laws; your attorney will also devise the best legal strategy to prove fault and obtain the most compensation. While you can handle some parts of the lawsuit on your own, you cannot replace the experience and skill of a pedestrian accident attorney.

Speak To A Pedestrian Accident Attorney Today

Russell Reiner, Pedestrian Accident Attorney

Pedestrian Accident Lawyer in Redding, Russell Reiner

A pedestrian accident can be frightening, painful, and overwhelming. If you were struck by a car recently, it’s a mistake to try to get a fair settlement from the insurance company alone. An experienced attorney may often get more money for your lost income, pain and suffering, and medical bills. How much you can receive in the case depends on many factors, especially the severity of your injuries. But the best chance of getting the most compensation is by hiring a pedestrian accident attorney. Contact a California personal injury law firm today for more information.

Leave a Reply