No accident is as terrifying and traumatic as a pedestrian accident. When a vulnerable pedestrian is hit by a metal vehicle weighing 4,000 pounds or more, the results to the pedestrian are often catastrophic with life-altering damages such as pain and suffering and economic damages including medical expenses, lost wages, and lower future earning capacity.
If you were hit by a car while walking, and the driver’s negligence behind the wheel was the cause, you shouldn’t be left responsible for the consequences. While a successful pedestrian accident claim cannot erase the injury or the harm caused, it can make it easier to move forward from the accident with access to the best medical care and fewer concerns about financial hardship.
There are many concerns injury victims have after a serious pedestrian accident, but one of the most important steps toward recovery is filing a pedestrian accident claim to recover compensation for damages.
What Do I Do After a Pedestrian Accident?
The first steps in filing a successful pedestrian accident claim for compensation begin at the scene of the accident. Naturally, if you are the victim, catastrophic injuries may keep you unable to do anything except wait for help to arrive, but if you or an uninjured companion have the foresight to take photos at the scene, it greatly benefits the claim later. After calling 911 to report the accident, document evidence by photographing the scene of the accident, including anything relevant like a crosswalk, a crossing signal, the vehicle that struck you, any damage to the vehicle, and any visible injuries. Then, add the contact information of the driver and any eyewitnesses to the accident.
Always seek medical attention immediately after the accident. The best way to begin a successful injury claim is to have documented evidence of the injuries through a detailed medical report with treatment recommendations, and your prognosis for recovery. Other important documents to gather for your claim include the police report and all medical bills and receipts for injury-related expenses as well as W2 forms showing your usual income.
Filing a New Haven Pedestrian Accident Claim
While it’s possible to file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company without an attorney, it’s always advisable to seek an experienced pedestrian accident attorney to represent your interests. Insurers often respond with a fast settlement offer before the injury victim knows the full extent of their damages. First offers are typically low and require you to sign away your right to file a lawsuit. Instead, a New Haven accident attorney will take the following steps to file a pedestrian accident claim:
Investigate the accident and gather evidence of liability
Carefully calculate your damages including pain and suffering compensation to maximize the amount you can recover
Send a compelling demand package to the at-fault driver’s insurance company
Negotiate with the insurer to get the largest possible settlement so you don’t have to go to court
Take the case to court if the insurer refuses to offer an acceptable settlement amount
Around 95% of pedestrian accident cases are resolved through a settlement, but if the case goes to court, you’ll need a skilled attorney who has worked on the case to bring it to court within the state’s statute of limitations and then advocate for a large court award for your damages.