Whether a careless Bay Area driver blitzed through a red light and hit you in a crosswalk, or you broke your leg after jaywalking across a busy intersection, you need to understand your rights and potential legal remedies as a victimized pedestrian. Depending on who hit you and how the accident occurred, you may be entitled to substantial compensation to pay for your lost time at work, medical bills and therapy, and even punitive damages.
Who Was At Fault?
The determination of fault is crucial, legally speaking. But proving fault may not be as simple as you realize. Even if you “know” that the other driver ran a light or failed to see you, there is a difference between “knowing” that fact and proving it in a court of law. To that end, the more objective information you can gather in the immediate aftermath of your accident, the easier it will be for your Northern California attorney to help you.
Take pictures of the accident scene, get statements from witnesses, get information about the driver or drivers who hit you or who were otherwise involved in the accident, collect police reports, keep copies of all medical records, and record information from all conversations that you have with doctors, insurance company representatives, etc. If you are too hurt/injured to gather this information, ask a witness or a close friend to help you out.
Negligence and Carelessness: Common Causes of Bay Area Pedestrian Accidents
In fairness, the Bay Area can be a confusing place to navigate, whether you are a truck delivery person, an out-of-state motorist, or a pedestrian who’s pretty familiar with the area. Motorists owe pedestrians a strong duty of care; if that duty is violated, you can build a liability claim.
Avoid the “DIY” Mentality
Far too many personal injury victims in Northern California wait far too long before accessing good legal help. The most critical time after an accident is the immediate aftermath. As the days pass, evidence from the scene may be cleared away, and you and other witnesses may forget what happened. In some accidents, you may need to sue right away to preserve evidence and/or to stop a liable driver or insurance company from taking defensive action against you.