Walking is an excellent form of exercise and transportation. Unfortunately, drivers act carelessly and can cause an accident that might leave you with permanent injuries. Pedestrian accidents can cause physical, emotional, and psychological damage. You can be in a pedestrian accident around Marietta regardless of the safety features and laws in place. Pedestrians should discuss their legal options with a Marietta pedestrian injury lawyer from Spaulding Injury Law. We can discuss your case, answer relevant questions and explain what we can potentially do for you.
Laws protecting pedestrians
Georgia has various laws to protect pedestrians from harm and to ensure everyone safely shares the road. Georgia Code § 40-6-91 states that drivers who “squeeze by, drive around or cut off” pedestrians violate this law. Pedestrians have the right of way in crosswalks but must yield to vehicles when not using a crosswalk. There are no jaywalking laws currently, which is where the yield rule comes in.
Additionally, drivers must stop when they see pedestrians approaching and refrain from blocking crosswalks. Marietta drivers must also remain stopped until pedestrians finish crossing the street. When drivers fail to adhere to these laws, they commit an illegal act and endanger the public. They can also be held liable for damages. Drivers are responsible for safely sharing the road with pedestrians.
Causes of pedestrian accidents
Drivers must be responsible and attentive when behind the wheel. When they aren’t, it can cause tragedy. Some causes and types of pedestrian accidents are more prevalent than others. Distracted driving happens when a motorist is not paying attention to the road because they are using their phone. Drunk driving is another common cause of crashes, impairing the driver’s cognitive function, vision, and more.
Crosswalks are the most prevalent area where a pedestrian can be struck by a car, but these collisions also happen in other areas like intersections and near driveways. Cars making turns at intersections believe they have the right of way over pedestrians. When drivers are exiting the driveway, they are not looking for pedestrians and can often reverse too fast.
Holding drivers responsible
Negligent motorists who cause traffic accidents are legally responsible for the losses they cause. However, holding these drivers accountable is not a straightforward process. Victims can file insurance claims or seek compensation through a lawsuit, but they must prove the components of negligence. If a driver fails to follow traffic laws, that is evidence of negligence. The elements of negligence you must prove are:
- Duty of care: established traffic laws
- Breach of duty: violating traffic laws
- Causation: a crash occurred
- Damages: harm to the victim
While most pedestrian accidents result from a driver’s careless actions, some can be the cause of vicarious liability or another third party. It can take some further investigation to determine if your case applies. It is vital that you seek compensation from all available resources.
Potential injuries from pedestrian accidents
Drivers, passengers, and pedestrians can suffer minor or severe injuries in pedestrian accidents. Some people can walk away without any injuries. Various factors will determine if you suffer injuries and their severity. Some injuries that pedestrians often suffer are:
- Severe lacerations
- Crush injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Multiple fractures
- Internal injuries and bleeding
- Significant burns and scars
When pedestrians suffer an injury, they can be transported from the accident scene or visit their doctor within a few days. Some injuries require long-term hospitalization, transportation to a local trauma center, rehabilitation, and more. Getting treatment can require weeks or months in bed and away from work. Some injuries can lead to lifelong care with little to no improvement.
The cost of medical treatment is one expense that pedestrian accidents can lead to, but there are many others. Your Marietta pedestrian injury attorney must calculate all your costs and seek compensation for these losses. Recoverable damages will range depending on the facts of the accident and the severity of your injuries. Some damages that can apply to your claim are:
- Property damage
- Medical bills
- Income loss
- Pain and suffering
- Ongoing future care and support
- Miscellaneous expenses
- Pain and suffering
Pedestrians who cannot return to work in the same capacity can seek diminished earning capacity costs. The first step is to work with your pedestrian injury lawyer in Marietta to identify relevant losses. Next, we can calculate these losses by collecting receipts and working with economists when necessary.
Insurance claim versus civil lawsuits
After calculating your losses and the pedestrian reaching maximum medical improvement, it is time to negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement. There are other nuances during the insurance claim process. It is important to also calculate intangible losses. Marietta pedestrian injury lawyers will work with the insurance company towards an amicable solution, but sometimes the insurance company continues to offer low payment.
We will send a demand package when the insurance company is too far from offering a fair payment. The demand gives the insurance company another opportunity to settle the claim. They can deny, accept or send a counteroffer. Depending on the answer, it can be time for a civil lawsuit. A lawsuit will require discovery, further negotiations, and other legal proceedings.
Sometimes drivers leave the scene to avoid suffering the consequences of their actions. Hit-and-runs can happen anywhere, but drivers will often leave when they are on a secluded road, or it is late at night. When a driver leaves, it makes seeking compensation more challenging. A Marietta pedestrian injury lawyer will investigate your crash, find avenues to find the driver, and seek compensation.
Contact Spaulding Injury Law
Drivers should be aware of their surroundings and pay attention to the road. They should look for other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, and objects. You have legal options after a pedestrian accident and should get the legal assistance you need for your case. Spaulding Injury law prioritizes your needs and focuses on seeking maximum compensation for your losses. Negligent motorists must be held responsible for their actions or inactions leading to losses. Speak to a Marietta pedestrian injury lawyer from Spaulding Injury Law by calling our office or filling out our online form.
Choosing the Right Marietta Lawyer
When choosing a lawyer, it’s important to find someone who has experience handling traumatic brain injury cases. Look for a lawyer who:
- Specializes in personal injury law
- Has a track record of success in brain injury cases
- Is willing to take your case to trial if necessary
- Will communicate with you regularly and keep you informed throughout the process
How Can a Wrongful Death Attorney Help?
More than five million people in the United States are living with a traumatic brain injury disability, and that’s a number that grows every day. By conducting a comprehensive investigation and building a compelling case on your behalf, a skilled brain injury attorney can help you recover damages for your medical treatment, lost earnings, and possibly more. Get the legal help you need after a brain injury. Speak to an attorney at Spaulding Injury Law by calling us. You may also contact us through the contact form here on our website. We are ready and prepared to fight for the justice that brain injury victims and their families need and deserve.