Monongalia County Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
It is easy to assume that if you are injured by a motor vehicle while walking, then the driver of that vehicle is at fault. However, even if you are in a crosswalk, use the walk signal, and check both ways before crossing, it is still possible that you share some of the blame for the accident.
Insurance companies in pedestrian accident cases make their profits by investigating these incidents to deny liability. They may argue that you are at least partially to blame by not giving a driver enough time to stop or even by walking suddenly out into the road. These tactics can limit or eliminate the potential for financial recovery for your losses.
Fortunately, a Monongalia County pedestrian accident lawyer may be able to help you to collect the compensation that you deserve. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney could conduct a thorough investigation into the accident, demonstrate why the defendant driver was at fault, and demand appropriate payments for your injuries.
Assigning Blame in Pedestrian Accident Cases
A simple rule of personal injury law states that people are responsible for their actions. In certain situations, this even includes scenarios in which a defendant inflicts damage after an accident. If a defendant has a duty to protect someone and causes an injury by failing in this duty, the defendant is negligent.
Pedestrian accident cases are a prime example of this legal dynamic. All drivers assume a duty to protect other people that they may encounter while behind the wheel, including pedestrians. A driver who causes an accident by speeding, ignoring a red light, or texting while driving is certainly to blame.
However, most cases are not this simple. The state uses a pure comparative negligence framework to assign blame in all personal injury cases. According to WV Code §55-7-13A, the proportion of the blame that a pedestrian has in the accident will reduce their recovery by that percentage. For example, a jury may believe that a pedestrian was 25 percent to blame for the collision because they were wearing black clothes at night. In this case, the injury victim could only recover 75 percent of the total compensation. A Monongalia County pedestrian accident lawyer could work to minimize the impact of comparative negligence on a claim.
What to Expect After Filing a Claim
Insurance companies make their profits by accepting premiums from drivers and finding excuses not to pay benefits. This especially applies in personal injury cases. At the same time, insurance companies have every right to properly evaluate a claim and to collect evidence.
This means that an insurance company may insist on taking a recorded statement from a plaintiff. During this statement, the insurance adjuster will ask questions concerning the incident to identify potential deviations from any prior statements that a plaintiff may have made. Simultaneously, the insurance company may speak to other witnesses, gather evidence from the scene of the accident, and request medical records and bills. A Monongalia County pedestrian accident attorney could advocate for victims and help protect their interests in any talks with insurance adjusters.
A Monongalia County Pedestrian Accident Attorney Could Help You
Filing a lawsuit following a pedestrian accident could seem like an impossible task. You may be suffering from severe physical injuries that affect your ability to return to work or to live your life the way you want. Taking on the insurance company at this time may seem intimidating or not worth the effort.
Fortunately, a Monongalia County pedestrian accident lawyer is available to relieve some of your burden. They could help you file a strong claim with as little stress for you as possible. This includes gathering evidence from the scene, tracking down witnesses, collecting medical records and bills, and filing demand packages for proper compensation. Contact a lawyer immediately to set up a consultation.