Have you or a loved one been injured in a pedestrian accident caused by a negligent or reckless driver? Pedestrian accidents result in thousands of injuries and deaths every year. Unfortunately, crosswalk accidents, hit and runs, and other accidents involving a pedestrian and automobile are common in Charleston and across West Virginia, and the consequences can be devastating.
At Tiano O’Dell, PLLC, we understand the challenges people experience after suffering injuries in a pedestrian accident. We represent clients who have been injured and lost loved ones caused by someone else’s misconduct. We know that you may be facing physical, emotional, and financial struggles, and we can help. Contact our office to schedule a free consultation with one of our pedestrian accident attorneys.
Our Pedestrian Accident Practice
- Our Charleston, West Virginia personal injury attorneys are experienced pedestrian accident lawyers. We know applicable laws, common causes and factors in pedestrian accidents, and how to gather important evidence to prove our claims. We know our clients are relying on a financial recovery to help them move forward after their accident, so we pursue maximum compensation in every case.
- We understand that our injured clients often have financial struggles due to missed work and medical bills after an accident. We offer free initial case evaluations, and we handle our personal injury cases on contingency. Our attorneys do not collect legal fees until we have successfully recovered compensation for our clients.
- We represented clients in personal injury cases for more than two decades. We have the experience and resources necessary to take on any type of defendant. We use cutting-edge technology to discover, collect, and preserve evidence that helps prove our cases against defendants and their insurance companies.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in West Virginia
Pedestrian accidents can cause many types of injuries. A lot of pedestrian accidents impact the lower body and cause lacerations and broken bones. Spinal cord injuries and brain injuries are also very common in pedestrian accidents. The severity of the injury depends on the impact of the pedestrian-vehicle collision.
- When a driver had an opportunity to avoid the accident but did not
- When a driver makes a right-hand and collides with a pedestrian crossing the street
- When the accident happens in a crosswalk
- When a pedestrian is struck by a driver when they are walking along the side of the road
- When the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol
Common Types of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians are at a disadvantage against motor vehicle drivers, as they are not surrounded by a metal chassis, kept in place by seatbelts and protected by airbags. A pedestrian is often severely injured as a result of pedestrian accidents, which can happen in a variety of circumstances.
Common pedestrian accidents that you may be entitled to compensation include:
- Hitting a pedestrian in a crosswalk
- Colliding with a pedestrian when they are walking on the side of the road
- Colliding with a pedestrian during a right-turn into a crosswalk
- Hitting a pedestrian on a sidewalk
Drivers in West Virginia have a responsibility to watch out for pedestrians, and to drive safely and attentively both on the roads and along the sidewalks. When drivers are not paying attention and hit you when you are walking, you could be entitled to compensation for all costs and damages associated with your injuries.
How to Prove Fault in a Charleston, WV Pedestrian Accident?
When it comes to pedestrian accidents in West Virginia, the concept of fault will play a central role in determining whether you are entitled to compensation for your injuries. In West Virginia, an injured person cannot recover compensation from the insurance company of the driver if they
were more than 50 percent at fault for the accident. Drivers and their insurance companies will try and avoid responsibility by claiming that the pedestrian ran into traffic, jaywalked, crossed against a traffic signal, or otherwise caused the accident.
Insurance companies will try and assign fault to you in an effort at avoiding paying anything for your damages. It is important to remember that insurance companies do not work for you, they don’t even work for the driver paying for their policy, they work for profit. Insurance companies
profit by reducing costs. The amounts that they pay out to injured parties are their primary costs, alongside the teams of claim analysts and attorneys there to scrutinize your claim and your potential liability for opportunities to deny it. Without an attorney on your claim, you are at a disadvantage, and could end up with no compensation, or less than you deserve.
To determine when a driver is liable for the damages from you pedestrian accident, evidence must be collected. Your Charleston, West Virginia pedestrian accident lawyer will handle your claim every step of the way, from gathering evidence through collecting the full compensation
you are entitled to.
What if the Pedestrian Accident was a Hit-And-Run?
Being in a hit-and-run pedestrian accident can be complex, as it is difficult to pursue compensation when you don’t know the identity of the driver. Contact the police immediately, especially in a hit-and-run, as a hit-and-run is illegal. If possible, try and remember or capture the license plate number, as well as any details and information about the vehicle and driver that hit you. Note the time of day the accident happened and where, which can help the police find traffic camera or security footage to use in your case.
Being able to complete any of these steps is helpful, but we understand this can be impossible in the moments after you were hit by a car and injured. This is not a cause for worry, and you may still have options. The most important step to take is to seek out immediate medical care after
your accident. If you awake in a hospital, make sure to call the police, and consider whether there were any witnesses who might be able to give them additional information. A hit-and-run will lead to a criminal investigation alongside your civil case, and any information the police are
able to collect can be used in your lawsuit to collect damages.
What Should I Do Right After Being Hit By a Car?
After your pedestrian accident the first thing to do is immediately seek out medical attention, which will protect your health and safety, and also make a record of your injuries. If you can, call the police at the scene of the accident and request that they create a report of the incident. Call a personal injury attorney with experience handling pedestrian accidents.
Sometimes it is not possible to call the police at the scene due to your injuries, but contacting them yourself or requesting help to do so as soon as possible after being hit by a car is important. A police report is a valuable piece of evidence when it comes time to prove liability and to
collect your compensation.
At the scene, if possible collect as much information as possible from the driver, and take photos of the driver, the scene of the accident, and the vehicle. If you have someone with you, ask them to record your interaction on their phone for additional evidence. From there, your attorney will investigate further to establish an accurate depiction of the conditions of both the driver and the road on the day of your pedestrian accident. The evidence from the investigation will go into the claim that your attorney drafts, files, and negotiates on your behalf, so you can focus on
recovering from your injuries.
Pedestrian Accident Compensation
Compensation for pedestrian accident injuries can include economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages come with a calculated price, such as medical bills, lost wages, pharmacy expenses, loss of earning capacity, and future medical costs. Non-economic losses often include compensation for pain, suffering, disability, and disfigurement.
In fatal injury cases, certain surviving family members can collect compensation for their losses, such as funeral expenses and loss of financial support. Punitive damages are sometimes awarded in pedestrian accident cases when the defendant’s conduct was egregious. For example, punitive damages may be awarded if the driver was intoxicated when he or she caused the accident.
Being injured in an accident caused by someone or something else entitles you to compensation for the costs and damages associated with your injuries. You can only collect compensation for damages that you prove with evidence then properly claim from the insurance company, and your pedestrian accident lawyer collects evidence and files the claim on your behalf.
The compensation generally available for injured pedestrians includes:
- Medical bills and expenses – in the short-term your emergency room
bills and medications will be covered, and in the long-term any ongoing medications, assessments, and other necessary care.
- Rehabilitation and ongoing treatment – when your injuries have caused long-term symptoms, your compensation will cover any ongoing rehabilitation and treatments that your injuries require.
- Lost wages and work benefits – you are entitled to compensation for the wages you miss out on while recovering from your injuries, as well as lost work benefits like sick and vacation time.
- Lost earnings potential and disability – if your injury has impacted your ability to work, or to work in a job that pays as well as before your injury, you are entitled to compensation to make up for the difference
from the time of your injury through the remainder of your working life.
- Wrongful death – if you have lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident,you may be able to bring a claim on their behalf to collect compensation, including the replacement of their financial contribution
to your household.
Collecting compensation requires that evidence be assembled, then incorporated into a proper claim that will be negotiated with the insurance company. Working with a pedestrian accident attorney takes all of this off of your plate, so you can focus on recovering from your injuries while your lawyer focuses on recovering the fullest possible compensation on your behalf.
Contact Our Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, the attorneys at Tiano O’Dell, PLLC, will meet with you to go over your rights to compensation and legal recovery options. Our attorneys advocate for maximum compensation during settlement negotiations and in the courtroom. We know that you and your family are counting on financial compensation to help you recover from your accident, and we can help.