If you were injured in a pedestrian accident, you are entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain & suffering.
If you were injured in a pedestrian accident, you are entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering from the negligent driver who struck you. The amount you deserve could be substantial if you suffered serious injuries—which is common in pedestrian collisions.
However, you may discover that the motorist is uninsured or underinsured. This can make pursuing your claim for damages much more complicated.
In the event that you were hurt as a pedestrian and were involved in an accident, you have the legal right to seek compensation from the driver who was negligent and caused your injuries for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you were involved in an accident as a pedestrian and sustained serious injuries—which is not uncommon—you may be entitled to a sizeable amount of compensation.
On the other hand, it is possible that the driver does not have insurance or has inadequate coverage. Because of this, pursuing your claim for damages may become significantly more difficult.
Every driver of a passenger vehicle in the state of California is required to maintain a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage. It is a violation of the law to operate a vehicle without carrying this insurance. In our State, the following are the minimum amounts of liability insurance that are required:
$15,000 in compensation for one person's injuries or death
$30,000 for each accident that results in injury or death.
$5,000 for property damages
In spite of the fact that the minimum required insurance amount is relatively inexpensive, a significant number of drivers in California operate vehicles without insurance. In addition, even if you suffered a minor injury, you would not be fully compensated for your losses if the other party only has $15,000 worth of insurance and they only have liability coverage.
Fortunately, if you have your own auto insurance policy, you might be able to make a claim for compensation under that policy. You have the right to file a claim for your injuries up to the limits of your policy if you purchased uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. You are safeguarded regardless of whether you are driving the vehicle or are a pedestrian who has been involved in an accident.
Your insurance provider is required to provide you with this type of coverage even though the state of California does not mandate that residents purchase it. You are eligible for uninsured and underinsured coverage if the policy names you as an insured individual or if you are a family member of the insured individual who resides in the same household as the insured individual.
You also have the choice to file a lawsuit against the driver who was either uninsured or underinsured when the accident that caused your injuries. In order to successfully file a lawsuit and defend your legal interests, you should seek the counsel of an experienced pedestrian accident attorney. You do not want to give up this potential source of compensation, even if it seems like the motorist does not have many assets that they can use to pay you what they owe you according to the judgment.
Immediately following the pedestrian accident, you need to take action in order to safeguard your right to financial compensation. The following is a list of six steps that you need to take:
Dial 9-1-1 immediately. Even if you believe the negligent driver has a minimal amount of insurance or none at all, you should still call the police when you get to the scene of the accident. You will be able to establish that the other driver was at fault for causing your accident with the assistance of the police report. This is something that you will need to do even if you are filing a claim with your own insurance company.
Get prompt medical care. Receiving prompt medical attention not only protects your health but also helps you avoid potential disagreements with your insurance provider regarding the nature of your injuries and the degree of their severity. Regardless of whether or not you think you were hurt in the accident, you should get checked out by a medical professional within the first 48 hours after the incident.
Collect the necessary contact information. You need to find out how to get in touch with the negligent driver, as well as the information for their insurance company, if they have one. You are going to need to have this information available for any witnesses to your accident who are able to vouch for what took place.
Take some photographs. You should use the camera on your phone to take pictures of the damage done to the vehicle that hit you, the scene of the accident, as well as your injuries. This can be compelling evidence to show the insurance adjuster or the jury, and it may help you establish that the driver was negligent in their actions.
Make contact with your insurance provider. Immediately contact your insurance provider and let them know about the accident involving the pedestrian. This safeguards your ability to make a claim under your uninsured or underinsured coverages in the event that it becomes necessary for you to do so.
Employ legal representation. As soon as possible, you should retain the services of a pedestrian accident lawyer who is experienced in their field. They are able to gather the evidence that you require and negotiate your settlement in such a way that you receive the highest possible recovery.
Have you been hurt as a pedestrian in an accident that occurred in Orange County or elsewhere in Southern California? Get in touch with us to arrange a free, no-obligation consultation at our office to discuss your situation and find out the ways in which I can be of assistance to you. Call us at 949-258-6859