Helping Clients Recover after a Lawrenceville Pedestrian Accidents
When a motor vehicle collides with a pedestrian in the middle of a roadway or at a sidewalk, severe injuries and damages can occur. In some instances, the accident may be fatal—especially if the vehicle was moving at a high rate of speed when it impacted the pedestrian. Read on to learn what your legal options are from an experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident lawyer.
In many pedestrian accident cases, the accident occurs because of someone else’s negligence. When that happens, the victim may file a legal claim or lawsuit against the at-fault driver who caused the accident.
If you or someone you love sustained one or more injuries in a pedestrian accident involving a motor vehicle, time is of the essence. In fact, under almost any circumstances, you only have two years from the date of your accident to file a claim or lawsuit against the at-fault party.
The experienced Lawrenceville personal injury lawyers at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you in filing a claim for monetary compensation and, if necessary, litigating your case through the state court system. Our legal team’s primary goal is to help you pursue and recover the fair and adequate monetary compensation you need to make you whole. Please give us a call today to learn more about how we can assist you with pursuing monetary compensation from the at-fault party.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents in and around Lawrenceville occur for a variety of reasons.
Some of the primary causes of these accidents include:
- Negligence of a motor vehicle operator – Motor vehicle operators have a duty to drive carefully in areas where pedestrians are likely to be present, such as parking lots, parking garages, and crosswalks. When a motor vehicle operator speeds, runs a red light, or disobeys the traffic regulations and state laws designed to keep safe drivers and pedestrians alike, there is a higher chance the driver will collide into a pedestrian the failed to see, resulting in serious injuries.
- Distracted motor vehicle operators – Similarly, when operators of motor vehicles are distracted and not paying attention to the road before them, such as by looking at a cell phone or another electronic device, they may not notice a pedestrian nearby and cause a fatal collision. Distractions from inside the vehicle, including loud music, can also lead to a collision with a nearby pedestrian or motor vehicle.
- Intoxicated drivers – Drivers who operate their vehicles while they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs pose a particular danger to nearby pedestrians. Alcohol and drugs can have a detrimental impact on a driver’s perception of the world around them, their ability to react to an emergency quickly, and their ability to make good judgment calls. Drivers who are under the influence may not see or take the presence of a pedestrian seriously or can’t stop the vehicle in time to avoid colliding with the pedestrian.
- Defective traffic signals – Many pedestrians try to cross the street using crosswalks at intersections. When a pedestrian sees a “walk” sign, they should feel safe to cross. If the traffic signal is defective or improperly programmed, they can get a walk signal at the wrong time, leading them directly into harm’s way and the path of oncoming traffic.
If the negligence of a motor vehicle operator caused an accident that injured you or a loved one at a time of being a pedestrian, the experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you with pursuing monetary compensation for the injuries that you suffered in your accident.
Common Locations for Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents can occur anywhere that pedestrians are regularly present, which are many. Motor vehicle operators have a duty to ensure that they drive their vehicles safely and reasonably at all times. Part of this duty of care includes watching out for pedestrians so as not to run into them.
Some of the most common locations where pedestrian accidents often occur include:
- Crosswalks located at traffic intersections – When motor vehicle drivers speed through traffic intersections or try to beat a red light, they might fail to see a pedestrian walking in the crosswalk at the intersection and collide with them.
- Parking garages and parking lots – Parking garages are often dark, making it difficult to see pedestrians walking in the vicinity. Nevertheless, motor vehicle operators have an affirmative duty to be aware of their surroundings at all times and to make sure that they use their rearview mirrors, side view mirrors, and back-up cameras when backing out of a parking space in a parking lot or parking garage.
- Sidewalks – When motor vehicle operators are distracted and not paying attention to the surrounding area, their negligence may cause their vehicle to go up over a sidewalk and strike a pedestrian located on it.
- Bicycle lanes – Even though bicyclists should be the only people in bicycle lanes, a driver who is not paying attention to the road could very easily veer over into a bicycle lane and strike someone.
Typical Injuries Sustained in Pedestrian Accident Cases
When pedestrians are walking in a crosswalk, on the sidewalk, or in a parking garage, they do not have the benefit of a car protective steel frame surrounding them. Consequently, they have no protection from their environment. If a motor vehicle collides with them (especially at a high rate of speed), there is a good chance that they will fall directly to the ground and severely injure themselves.
Injuries in pedestrian accidents may include soft tissue injuries (like muscular strains, sprains, and contusions), bone fractures, traumatic head and brain injuries, back and spinal cord injuries, rotator cuff tears, internal bleeding or organ damage, and even death.
If you or a member of your family has sustained one or more of these injuries as a pedestrian in an accident that was caused by a motor vehicle driver, you deserve to pursue and recover monetary compensation for the pain and suffering you went through. The Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you with pursuing the monetary compensation you need to feel whole.
Filing an Insurance Claim or Lawsuit for Damages
If a driver’s negligence and lack of responsibility caused a pedestrian accident that injured you or someone you love, an experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident lawyer can assist you with filing a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If the driver was on the job and within the scope of their employment at the time of the pedestrian accident (such as when an at-fault driver was operating a company vehicle), the injured pedestrian may also bring a legal cause of action against the driver’s employer, under an agency of vicarious liability recovery theory.
To succeed in a pedestrian accident claim stemming from a pedestrian accident, you must, by a preponderance of the evidence, establish:
- That the at-fault driver owed you a duty of care to act as a reasonably safe and prudent driver under the circumstances.
- That the at-fault driver breached their duty of care by operating the vehicle in an unreasonable, unsafe, and careless manner (such as by violating a traffic law or driving regulation, disobeying a rule of the road, engaging in distracted driving, or driving while intoxicated, for example).
- That the driver’s violation of the prevailing standard of care resulted in the pedestrian accident and the injuries that you sustained.
- That as a direct and proximate result of the accident, you suffered one or more personal injuries.
In cases where liability is it is clear that the motor vehicle operator was the sole and proximate cause of a pedestrian accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company should accept liability for the accident. In those instances, the most often disputed issue in the case concerns damages. Damages are the amount of money that the pedestrian accident case is worth.
When it comes to proving damages in a pedestrian accident case, expert analysis and testimony are often necessary. For example, a medical expert might help prove that a causal connection existed between a particular medical condition and the pedestrian accident.
Damages in a pedestrian accident case come in the form of monetary compensation. In most cases, the more serious the injuries that the accident victim sustained, and the more significant the resultant medical treatment, the higher the damages the accident victim may receive.
Potential types of monetary compensation in Lawrenceville pedestrian accident cases include:
- Compensation for all medical treatment, procedures, and physical therapy that a healthcare provider can causally relate to the pedestrian accident
- Compensation for all lost wages associated with the accident when the accident victim physically can’t work due to their injuries, or when the accident victim was required to take time off work to attend medical and physical therapy appointments related to the injuries sustained in the accident
- Compensation for inconvenience, pain, and suffering related to the accident
- Compensation for mental anguish and emotional distress related to the accident
- Compensation for loss of use of a body part or loss of enjoyment of life that stemmed from the injuries received in the accident
- Compensation for loss of future earning capacity or for having to work at a lighter duty job because of injuries sustained in the accident
- Compensation for loss of family or spousal companionship and support
The experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident lawyers at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you with proving all of the legal elements of your claim or lawsuit, in an attempt to maximize the amount of your monetary compensation and damages.
In some cases, more than one party might be liable for a pedestrian accident. Two drivers might collide in an intersection, causing one vehicle to hit a pedestrian. If a traffic signal is improperly timed, the agency in charge of programming the signals might be liable. However, a driver might have avoided the accident if they were watching the road when the signal changed. If the driver was looking down at a phone or was otherwise distracted, which led them to hit the pedestrian, the driver might also be partially liable for the accident.
These situations require an injured pedestrian to identify all of the possible liable parties and file the necessary insurance claims against each one. Complex questions might arise regarding each party’s degree of fault and responsibility for which percentage of losses. This can be a complicated situation, and you want the right lawyer handling this type of claim from the very start and throughout every step of the insurance or lawsuit process.
Lawrenceville Pedestrian Accident FAQ
Pedestrians run a high risk of sustaining severe and potentially fatal injuries if a motor vehicle unexpectedly strikes them. Unlike the occupants of a car, truck, or van, pedestrians do not have an outer structure of protective metal surrounding their bodies at the time of impact.
When a large motor vehicle collides with a pedestrian, especially at a high rate of speed, there is a good chance the pedestrian will be knocked to the ground and sustain one or more significant injuries. If the impact is especially hard, the accident may even be fatal.
The majority of pedestrian accidents in and around Lawrenceville were most likely preventable if a motor vehicle operator had simply taken the time to operate their vehicle safely and carefully. If you or a person you love has sustained an injury in a pedestrian accident, you may have monetary compensation available to you.
The experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident lawyers at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can review the circumstances of your accident, file a claim or lawsuit on your behalf, and help you pursue the economic recovery that you need and deserve.
Where do pedestrian accidents typically occur?
Pedestrian accidents can happen just about anywhere, but they are especially prevalent in areas where large numbers of pedestrians are present. Pedestrian accidents can occur at traffic intersections where a crosswalk may or may not be available. These types of accidents are also common in parking lots and parking garages, where pedestrians are walking to and from their parked vehicles. Finally, some pedestrian accidents occur on the sidewalks of busy roadways.
If you or a person you love sustained injuries in a pedestrian accident that occurred in one of these locations, the experienced legal team of Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you with pursuing monetary compensation for the injuries that you sustained.
What are some common causes of pedestrian accidents in and around Lawrenceville?
Pedestrian accidents can occur in the Lawrenceville area for a variety of reasons. One of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents is careless and negligent motor vehicle operation, causing the vehicle to collide with the pedestrian, who has no protection.
Driver negligence can come in several different forms, including:
- Violating traffic laws – The state of Georgia has traffic rules and regulations on the books for a very important reason: to keep drivers and pedestrians safe. Drivers, for example, should refrain from speeding and running red lights and stop signs. Pedestrians are often present at traffic intersections; if a driver tries to beat a red light, they may end up colliding with a pedestrian in the process. Drivers should also watch their speeds, especially in parking lots, parking garages, and near schools. When a pedestrian accident occurs because a driver violates one or more rules of the road, the violation alone is usually sufficient to prove liability (or fault) on the part of the driver.
- Distracted driving – Many motor vehicle operators use their cell phones to send text messages, make calls without the use of a hands-free device, and send emails—all while driving, even though this is against Georgia law. When a person drives a car or truck, safe and careful motor vehicle operation should be their top priority. A distracted driver can very easily miss pedestrians who are present on or near the roadway. Some drivers will strike a pedestrian on the sidewalk, simply because the driver failed to pay attention to their surroundings or where their vehicle was heading.
- Failing to use rear and side-view mirrors – When drivers are backing out of a space in a parking lot or parking garage, they may fail to look into their rearview and side-view mirrors. It could be that they are distracted or in too big of a hurry to check for pedestrians and other vehicles in the vicinity. As a result, they may carelessly strike a pedestrian who is walking behind their vehicle, resulting in significant injuries.
- Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated – Georgia law prohibits individuals from operating their motor vehicles while intoxicated by alcohol or drugs. With regard to alcohol, the legal limit is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent. The limit is lower for commercial drivers, and there is a zero-tolerance policy in place for underage drivers (drivers who are under 21 years of age). Alcohol and drugs have a significant impact on a person’s central nervous system functioning. These substances can also slow down a driver’s reaction time and affect the driver’s vision, depth perception, and level of awareness. All of these deficiencies can result in a collision with a pedestrian. For example, an intoxicated driver may not see the pedestrian or believe the pedestrian is farther away than they actually are.
- Sidewalk and pavement defects – In some cases, pedestrian accidents do not occur because of motor vehicle negligence but because of surface defects on the pavement, sidewalk, in a parking lot, parking garage, or at a crosswalk where the pedestrian is walking. Those defects include potholes and concrete spalling, among others. If the injured pedestrian can demonstrate that their fall occurred because of a surface defect, then the pedestrian may file a claim or lawsuit against the person or entity who is responsible for maintaining the area where the fall took place. In some cases, the responsible entity may be a construction company, while at other times, the city, county, or some other municipality may be liable. When it comes to specific municipalities, however, certain notice requirements often act as a prerequisite to filing an actual lawsuit.
If you sustained injuries in a pedestrian accident, you are likely facing a long road to recovery, and seek the legal help you need as quickly as possible. The experienced pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can review the circumstance surrounding your accident to determine the probable cause or causes. In some cases, we may need to retain an expert to investigate to look further into the cause of your pedestrian accident. Once we have determined the cause, we may assist you with pursuing the monetary compensation you deserve for the injuries you sustained in your accident.
What types of injuries are common in Lawrenceville pedestrian accident cases? How do these injuries happen?
Pedestrian accidents in and around Lawrenceville can lead to very severe injuries and damages. The injuries sustained in these accidents are so severe because the pedestrian does not have a protective covering surrounding them at the time of the accident. If the pedestrian accident is due to a negligent or distracted motor vehicle driver, the pedestrian may fall directly to the ground, often with a significant amount of force, or into another motor vehicle.
In some instances, the force of the impact is so strong that the pedestrian’s injuries are fatal. At other times, the pedestrian may receive serious (and potentially permanent) injuries, including bone fractures, traumatic head and brain injuries, soft tissue contusions, and paralysis, along with other spinal cord injuries.
In cases where pedestrians sustain a severe injury, they may be eligible to recover monetary compensation not only for their medical treatment but also for the permanent effects of their injuries. If a pedestrian dies in the accident, their surviving family members—or the personal representative of the estate—may assert a wrongful death claim against the at-fault person or entity. The experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can assist you with pursuing monetary compensation for your injuries from the at-fault parties and their insurance companies.
Will I need to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver in my pedestrian accident case?
Whether or not a person should file a lawsuit following a pedestrian accident depends on each specific case. In some instances, the insurance company may offer you the compensation that you deserve and the case will settle out of court. At other times, the insurance company may not provide you with a reasonable settlement, necessitating a lawsuit against the responsible parties. Once you file your lawsuit, the litigation process begins.
It is important to remember that just because you file a lawsuit in your pedestrian accident case, it does not necessarily mean that your case will proceed all the way to trial. In fact, the majority of Lawrenceville pedestrian accident cases settle out of court well before they ever reach the trial stage.
Regardless of whether or not you file suit in your pedestrian accident case, you will need to satisfy certain legal elements to recover monetary compensation for your injuries. First, you must demonstrate that another person did something wrong (such as driving unreasonably under the circumstances). Proof that a motor vehicle driver was speeding, engaging in distracted driving, or violating some other rule of the road is often enough to demonstrate a breach of the duty of care.
The injured pedestrian must also show that the at-fault party’s breach caused the accident, resulting in specific injuries and damages. Frequently, insurance companies like to allege accidents did not cause certain preexisting injuries. When that occurs, expert medical testimony may be necessary to demonstrate that the pedestrian accident did indeed cause the injury in question, or that the accident exacerbated a preexisting injury or medical condition.
How long do I have to decide whether or not to file a lawsuit after my pedestrian accident?
If you or a person you love have received injuries from a pedestrian accident, you have two years from the date of your accident in which to file a lawsuit. The primary purpose of this filing deadline (or statute of limitations) is to prevent evidence from becoming stale and to ensure witness availability if the matter proceeds to trial.
If you fail to file a lawsuit arising out of your accident within that two-year time frame, you will forever lose the right to recover monetary compensation for the injuries that you sustained in that accident.
The Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm can file a lawsuit against all potentially responsible individuals or entities in a timely manner, safeguarding your right to pursue and collect monetary compensation arising from your accident.
What types of damages can I recover in my Lawrenceville pedestrian accident case?
There is no question that pedestrian accidents in and around Lawrenceville can result in extremely serious and sometimes fatal injuries. For you to recover damages, you must demonstrate (often through expert testimony) that a causal connection exists between your injuries and the pedestrian accident.
If you satisfy the burden of proof in your case, you might recover monetary compensation for:
- All related medical, surgical, and physical therapy bills
- Lost earnings that represent the time you missed from work to treat and recover from your injuries
- Pain, suffering, and inconvenience related to the injuries you sustained in your accident
- Loss of future earning capacity, in cases where the injured pedestrian cannot return to their former job or line of work
- Mental distress and emotional anguish resulting from the injuries sustained in the accident
- Estimated costs of future medical procedures, such as future surgeries or injections, that the claimant may need and which a healthcare provider recommends
- Loss of the ability to move or use a specific body part or parts
- Loss of spousal support or companionship
If you or someone you love were injured in a pedestrian accident that resulted from someone else’s negligence, the Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorneys at Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm will work hard to help you pursue and recover the monetary compensation that you need to feel whole again.
Talk to an Experienced Lawrenceville Pedestrian Accident Lawyer About a Potential Claim Today
If a motor vehicle driver’s negligence or irresponsibility caused a pedestrian accident that injured you or a person you care about, time may be of the essence in your case. Generally speaking, the sooner that a lawyer gets involved in your case, the more likely it is that you will receive fair and just compensation. Dedicated law firms can help with every aspect of your situation, including advising you how to address medical bills while your case remains pending.
The skilled team of attorneys at the Brauns Law Accident Injury Firm will start to work right away on investigating the circumstances of your case, filing a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company on your behalf, and, if necessary, litigating your case to a successful conclusion in the state civil court system.
While money will never turn back time, it can certainly help you move forward in a better position and with a sense of justice. For a free case evaluation and legal consultation with an experienced Lawrenceville pedestrian accident attorney, please give us a call at (678)-647-1314 or contact us online for more information.
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Brauns Law, P.C.
892 legacy park Dr.
Lawrenceville, GA 30043