The common presumption is that drivers are automatically at fault for pedestrian accidents. However, this may not always be true. Understanding the factors that prove fault in a pedestrian accident may help you determine fault when filing a personal injury claim. Depending on those factors, you could be eligible for significant compensation. You do not have to try to figure this out alone. Consider asking a Kansas City pedestrian accident lawyer for help.
How is Fault Proven for a Pedestrian Accident?
The aftermath of a pedestrian accident can be confusing. Knowing what steps to take is not always easy. Certain steps are vital for securing the personal injury compensation you need to recover from the accident. One of the most important steps for this process to work is proving fault for the pedestrian accident.
Each state has different laws for proving fault in a car accident. As a comparative fault state, Missouri allows both people in a traffic accident to collect compensation, even if both parties were at fault. The way this works is that each person is assigned a percentage of fault for the traffic accident.
Many people wonder how this applies to pedestrian accidents if the driver is the one who hit the pedestrian. Even if the driver hit the pedestrian, percentages of fault can still be assigned to both parties. For example, the driver could be deemed 90% at fault for the accident while the pedestrian is considered 10% at fault. This means the driver will owe more compensation than the pedestrian and the pedestrian will receive more compensation than the driver.
In other words, the higher the percentage of fault for the accident, the more the person who is at fault will owe the person they injured. The lower the percentage of fault is for the other person, the more that person will be compensated. In terms of proving fault, this is primarily done with evidence of negligence. Various factors associated with pedestrian accidents can make this process challenging like the loss of evidence or hit-and-run accidents.
Many pedestrian accidents involve hit-and-run drivers. There are steps you can take after a hit-and-run accident that can help you preserve your chances of proving fault. As a pedestrian, write down as many details about the accident, what the driver looked like, and what the driver’s vehicle looked like. The more details you can remember and write down, the better.
Contact 911 right away so you can file a police report and have your injuries properly assessed. This will add further evidence on your side for what transpired. Try contacting a Kansas City auto accident lawyer to explore other steps you can take to prove fault.
Can Pedestrians Be at Fault for Pedestrian Accidents?
Not everyone realizes that pedestrians can also be considered 50% at fault or more for a pedestrian accident. Multiple factors contribute to pedestrian accident causes, including actions taken both by drivers and pedestrians. Identifying the negligent factor that caused your pedestrian accident is vital for proving fault. Common driver behaviors that cause pedestrian accidents include:
- Distracted driving like texting while driving
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Reckless driving like speeding
- Drunk or drugged driving
If you suspect the driver who hit you was engaging in one of these reckless driving behaviors, then try asking a lawyer about your options. Some drivers will try to make the pedestrian seem at fault for the accident. Common pedestrian behaviors associated with fault in pedestrian accidents include:
- Ignoring crosswalk signals
- Running across the street unexpectedly
- Texting while walking
- Public intoxication
Any of these factors can be used by the other driver against your personal injury claim. You do not have to let this happen. Following these essential car accident steps after the incident can protect you and improve your chances of being compensated:
- Do not apologize or admit fault to anyone
- Call 911 for police and paramedics when injured
- Write down accident, driver, and vehicle details
- Collect your medical records and the police report
- Take pictures of damages and injuries
All it takes is one apology or implied admission of guilt to let the driver use your words against you. When filing a claim for compensation, any words you say can be used to discredit your claim. Calling 911 not only protects you from liability but also starts the process of building evidence for your claim with documents from police and medical professionals.
Start building your personal injury claim with copies of these documents along with your written details of the accident, including the cause. Add any other evidence to your claim like pictures and consider consulting with a lawyer before submitting the claim. An experienced lawyer can go through the claims process with you to maximize your chances of compensation.
A lawyer can also help you assess other damages you may have suffered to help you qualify for additional compensation. Pedestrian accident damages may not only include physical injuries but also pain and suffering along with lost income. Even if your initial personal injury claim is denied, a lawyer can assess possible reasons and find solutions.
Lawyers are prepared to take additional steps if your claim is still denied. A lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company for a settlement or take the claim to court when this fails. Mediation, arbitration, and other legal options may also be available. Consulting with a lawyer about the specifics of your situation might be one of the best options for figuring this process out.
You may not have to settle for little to no compensation. Reach out to one of our dedicated lawyers to start working your way closer to compensation today. You could be eligible to receive compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and psychological distress.
Kansas City Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
You may not have to pay for the damages you suffered in a pedestrian accident. Start by contacting Peterson and Associates P.C. today at (816) 888-8888 to talk to a Kansas City pedestrian accident attorney for a consultation. Our legal team might be able to help you secure compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages from the accident. We serve clients in Kansas City, Missouri.