We all do our best to stay safe throughout the day, especially when crossing the street or standing near busy intersections. Unfortunately, no matter how diligent we are, sometimes drivers lose control of their vehicles, and we may not see them coming. Often they’re texting, eating, or just not paying attention.
This behavior can lead to serious accidents and cause permanent injuries to pedestrians who get caught in their path. If you’re the victim of a pedestrian accident, you may be entitled to compensation, and Robinette Legal Group, PLLC will do everything in our power to get you every last penny that you deserve.
Why You Need A Morgantown Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you’ve been struck by a motor vehicle, it’s crucial that you have the proper guidance in order to file your claim properly. If you miss the deadline to file, or you fail to include pertinent information in your claim, you may be barred from receiving any type of compensation.
Additionally, a qualified Morgantown personal injury lawyer can obtain additional evidence to help prove your case. The following are some examples of the ways a lawyer can help you:
- Interviewing people who witnessed the accident
- Recovering video footage from stores or houses in the area
- Obtaining all official accident reports
- Securing expert witnesses who can testify at trial on your behalf – for example, an accident reconstruction expert
Statute Of Limitations for Pedestrian Accident Injuries
You must file your claim within two years of the injury or death caused by the accident. If you are filing a lawsuit on behalf of a loved one who was killed in a pedestrian accident, the two-year statute of limitations begins on the date of their death, even if the death occurred on a later date than the original accident.
Damages Recoverable In a Pedestrian Injury Claim
If you’re the victim of a pedestrian accident, you may be entitled to the following damages:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Property damage from the accident
- Pain and suffering
In West Virginia, you are not permitted to recover more than $500,000 in punitive damages.
For compensatory damages, you can generally recover up to $250,000. If you’re the victim of a pedestrian accident and have suffered a catastrophic injury, the cap is increased to $500,000 for compensatory damages. It is considered a catastrophic injury if your injuries are permanent and substantial. For pain and suffering, the limit is $250,000.
To successfully recover damages in a pedestrian accident claim, you will have to prove that the driver was negligent.
Who is at Fault in a Pedestrian Accident? Comparative Negligence Explained
In West Virginia, pedestrian accidents are governed by the rule of comparative negligence. If the court determines that the victim contributed less than 51% of the negligence that caused the accident, they will be permitted to recover damages. In this case, the damages will be reduced by the percentage of the victim’s fault. However, if it is determined that the victim contributed 51% or more of the negligence that caused the accident, they will be barred from recovering any damages.
Do note that you could still pursue civil claims even if you’re partly responsible. Since West Virginia is a modified comparative fault state, shared fault doesn’t prevent you from being awarded compensation. However, your injury settlement will be reduced based on your percentage of liability. For instance, you were crossing the street outside the crosswalk when you were injured. The judge may find you to be 30% at fault for the injuries you sustained. So your injury settlement is reduced by 30%. Consult a Morgantown pedestrian accident lawyer to help you with your case.
The Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Based on recent statistics, 82% of pedestrian traffic deaths occurred in urban settings, and 80% were in dark lighting conditions. Additionally, there were more than 6,200 pedestrian fatalities in traffic accidents in 2019.
Pedestrian accidents are usually caused by:
- Failure to stop
- Making an illegal turn
- Failure to yield
- Failure to use a turn signal
- Driving while fatigued
- Road rage
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Drugged driving
However, careless drivers are not always the cause of pedestrian accidents. There may be other parties who share the blame. Crosswalks, roadways, and lighting conditions are the responsibility of government agencies, and they could be held accountable.
What is A Morgantown Pedestrian Accident Claim Worth?
Every pedestrian accident case is different. Your attorney will carefully consider both your economic and non-economic damages.
The following are a few of the most common types of financial and non-financial losses that you could recover in your pedestrian accident claim:
- Emotional distress
- Medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality of life
- Diminished earning potential
- Property damages
- Lost wages
- Loss of household services
How to Recover Compensation for Your Pedestrian Accident Injuries
There are 2 primary ways you may recover compensation.
The first is through the insurance company. You can file a pedestrian accident claim through an insurance provider.
The insurance companies usually only provide coverage for economic damages, such as property damages or medical expenses. They only pay up to the policy limit, and they might not cover emotional damages, so you might need to file a lawsuit.
Personal Injury Lawsuit
A personal injury attorney can prepare your case for trial when medical expenses, emotional damages, and lost wages exceed the insurance coverage. Your lawyer should start on your case soon if you want to get the most out of your claim.
If you or a loved one has suffered pedestrian accident injuries, then you might be able to recover a significant amount of compensation. Contact us now to get a free case evaluation. We’ll make sure that you get the maximum compensation possible.
Talk to an Experienced Pedestrian Accident Lawyer in Morgantown, WV Today
At Robinette Legal Group, PLLC, we have experienced personal injury attorneys who know everything there is to know about pedestrian accident cases. We know exactly what we need to do in order to be successful in your claim. To win in a case like this, we will conduct extensive research to prove that the driver who caused the accident was negligent and that their negligence was the cause of your injuries. For example, we can subpoena the driver’s phone records to show that they were on the phone and distracted at the time of the accident. At Robinette Legal Group, PLLC, you can leave everything to us when dealing with a pedestrian accident. We are the experts you need!