California has the unfortunate distinction of some of the highest rates of pedestrian fatalities in the United States. Distracted driving, drunk driving, texting while driving, and other negligent behavior often cause these accidents. If you or someone you love was injured in a pedestrian accident, a California pedestrian accident attorney can help.
Common Types of Pedestrian Accident Cases
Distracted driving is an increasing problem in California, but it is not the only cause of pedestrian crashes. Pedestrians can suffer injuries due to:
- Distracted driving
- Malfunctioning road signals and signage
- Drunk drivers
- Accidents caused by busses, trains, or other public transportation
- Incidents with rideshare vehicles
- Commercial trucks
Depending on what happened, you may have a claim against the driver who hit you, a driver’s employer, a government entity, or a property owner.
What You Should Do After an Accident
You may be stunned after an accident. But, what you say and do at the crash scene can affect the outcome of any claim you may try to pursue. So, it is essential to try to do the following:
- Call the police and get an accident report
- Take photos of everything- your injuries, the scene of the accident, property damage, what injured you (a car, truck, etc.), the weather conditions, and road conditions
- Take photos of the at-fault driver’s license, insurance card, and license plate
- Get phone numbers and names of eyewitnesses
- Get medical attention as soon as possible
- Follow any treatment plan and go to all follow-up appointments
- Journal about your injuries and how you feel each day as you try to recover
- Do not accept any settlement offer until you have gotten the advice of an attorney
- Do not discuss or post about your accident on social media
- Speak with an attorney as soon as possible
Taking these steps may help you obtain a fair settlement without having to file a lawsuit.
The At-Fault Party Is Responsible
Identifying who is at fault for a pedestrian accident is essential because California follows an “at-fault” liability system. The injured party usually files a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. However, if a government entity is involved, you must follow special rules.
To prove a party is at fault, you have to prove they were either negligent or “per se” negligent.
In California, the inquired party’s contribution to the accident is also considered. This consideration is called “comparative negligence.” Under the concept of comparative negligence, if you contributed to the accident by being negligent in any way, a court or insurance company may reduce your recovery by your degree of responsibility.
Speak with an Attorney Promptly
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident, speak with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. The time frame for bringing a personal injury claim in California is two years, with certain exceptions. Our pedestrian accident attorney understands the importance of promptly addressing your claim. Contact us today for a free consultation.