Helping Clients Injured In Pedestrian Accidents
Some of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents are general inattentiveness, and that is sometimes on the actual driver and the pedestrian involved too. Many pedestrian accidents occur at the crosswalks where people are crossing the street at the intersections from one point of the intersection to the other.
Generally, the accidents happen when the driver fails to notice that someone has stepped into the crosswalk and is coming into the intersection and doing what we call a California stop, where they really do not come to a full stop. And because they do not see anyone there initially, they sort of roll through the intersection, usually about the same time as the pedestrian is stepping into the crosswalk. That is when the accident occurs.
Usually, if the pedestrian has the right of way when they are in the crosswalk and they are crossing on a green signal, then it is very hard to show that the driver was not negligent and that the driver should not be the one held responsible.
Then you have these other types of cases where the driver is not held responsible. Those are typically cases where a pedestrian comes out from between two cars in the middle of the street, and there is really nothing the driver can do to avoid colliding with the pedestrian. Those types of cases sometimes involve contributive fault against the driver. Perhaps the driver was talking on the cellphone, or perhaps the driver was traveling at a speed that was unsafe or above the posted speed limit, in which case there can be some contributory fault on the driver even though the pedestrian darted out into the street between the two cars.
If you or a loved one has experienced an injury due to negligence of a driver and were hit as a pedestrian, please call The Sexton Law Firm for assistance with your claim. Contact us at 619-678-1833 or by email.
We are able to help people in all types of pedestrian accidents. Normally, we see a lot of younger children, children in the crosswalks, school children and children on bikes under the same types of circumstances with the same type of injuries. So the vast majority of clients in my practice are definitely minors.
Not in the case when they are darting out from between two cars into the street or jaywalking. They obviously do not. But, if you are crossing at an intersection or in a crosswalk, and you are crossing on the green sign, which is normally like a little figure of a person walking and that is blinking in green, then generally you are pretty safe as far as fault goes. It is very hard to show that you should be held at fault when you are obeying the traffic laws and the pedestrian laws in that circumstance. So it is very hard to be held responsible for that type of accident.
What Damages Can You Recover In A Pedestrian Accident?
Generally, injured pedestrians have the same rights as anyone else who is in some type of car accident. You are entitled to basically your economic damages, which are your medical bills, lost wages and out-of-pocket expenses. You are also entitled to noneconomic damages, which is generally pain and suffering.
When you are struck by an automobile, the insurance companies generally have adjusters and attorneys of their own, who are well-versed in this type of law. And they are very adept at getting information from pedestrians that can hurt their case, that can show that they are somehow contributorily at fault.
In California, it is 100 percent fault, and it is not necessarily true that everyone is 100 percent at fault in an accident. It could be 70 percent the driver’s fault, 30 percent the pedestrian’s fault. It just sort of depends. And of course, the adjusters and the attorneys are always trying to pay as little money as they can in these types of cases and claims. So, they are very good at getting pedestrians and other accident victims to say things that maybe they shouldn’t, that ends up hurting their case and results in them getting less than what they deserve.
My law firm has been in existence now for 13 years. I have been an attorney 22 years. The first 10 years of my attorney life I used to work for the insurance companies on the defense side. It used to be my job. Every dollar I would save an insurance company in defending a pedestrian auto case would mean a dollar less for the injured person.
So, for the last 13 or so years I have switched that around. I have my own firm, and now my thrust is getting accident victims the compensation they deserve. And I feel I have learned a lot of things from working for the insurance company on the defense side that definitely help me in managing these types of cases from the injured person or plaintiff side, and that have helped me get better awards and compensation for my clients than maybe some other attorney who did not have that type of background and experience.