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Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Gilbert

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Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Gilbert

When pedestrians are struck by cars in Gilbert, Arizona, they often sustain permanently disabling injuries or are killed. Pedestrians are unprotected from the violent forces released in collisions with vehicles, which makes them much more susceptible to severe injuries or death in vehicle accidents. To protect pedestrians from harm, Arizona has enacted numerous laws. Unfortunately, however, some motorists violate these laws and strike pedestrians. Following a pedestrian accident in which a motorist was at fault, the injured victim or the family of a person who is killed can file a lawsuit to recover compensation and hold the motorist accountable for their negligence. A skilled pedestrian accident attorney Gilbert at Lamber Goodnow represents victims and works hard to help them recover all of the compensation they deserve to pay for their losses.

Our attorneys strongly believe that people who are injured or lose their loved ones because of the negligent or reckless actions of others deserve to be fully compensated for their losses. We are dedicated to fighting for our clients’ rights and thoroughly investigate their accidents to find critical evidence to support their claims for damages. Our in-depth legal knowledge, work ethic, and litigation skills frequently help us secure fair settlements through our negotiations with insurance companies. Because of our successful record and reputation as fierce advocates for our clients, many insurance companies agree to settle our clients’ claims instead of risking a loss at a jury trial against us.

Our team of attorneys handles all types of pedestrian accident claims, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Vehicles striking pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Vehicles striking pedestrians at unmarked intersections
  • Vehicles failing to yield to pedestrians
  • Vehicles running red lights or stop signs and striking pedestrians
  • Drunk driving pedestrian accidents
  • Vehicles striking pedestrians in parking lots
  • Distracted driving pedestrian accidents
  • Distracted driving accidents

Our attorneys recognize that each pedestrian accident case is different, so we customize how we approach each claim based on each client’s needs and circumstances. We work closely with our clients and are available to answer questions whenever they arise.

Pedestrian Accident Statistics

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reports that an estimated 7,485 pedestrians were killed in accidents in the U.S. in 2021. This was a year-over-year increase of 12% over the number of pedestrians who were killed in 2020. According to the GHSA, 235 Arizona pedestrians died in 2021.

The high number of pedestrian fatalities in 2021 demonstrates the dangers pedestrians face when they share the roads with cars. If you have been injured while walking by a motorist or lost your loved one in this type of accident, you should speak to a pedestrian accident lawyer Gilbert at Lamber Goodnow about your potential case.

Arizona Pedestrian Laws

Several important laws deal with pedestrians in Arizona. These laws include the following:

  • ARS 28-646 – When there is a pedestrian crossing signal, a pedestrian who is crossing must cross when signaled quickly after traffic has stopped and should not wait to allow a vehicle through.
  • ARS 28-791 – Pedestrians must obey traffic control devices at intersections when there are no pedestrian crossing signals present.
  • ARS 28-792 – Motorists must yield to pedestrians in crosswalks on the same side of the road or when they are in the opposite half but close enough to the vehicle that proceeding would endanger them. Pedestrians must not step off of the curb in front of an oncoming vehicle that is close enough that the driver can’t yield.
  • ARS 28-793 – Pedestrians crossing the road at an unmarked intersection or at any other area of the road must yield to traffic.
  • ARS 28-794 – Drivers must exercise caution to avoid hitting pedestrians, use their horns when necessary, and be especially cautious when they see children or disabled people on the road.
  • ARS 28-795 – Pedestrians should cross on the right side of the crosswalks.
  • ARS 28-796 – When sidewalks are available, pedestrians should use them and not walk on the road. If there isn’t a sidewalk, pedestrians must walk facing traffic on the shoulder as far away from vehicles as possible.
  • ARS 28-797 – Drivers approaching school crossing zones when school is in session must obey them and travel at no more than 15 mph through them. They must come to a complete stop and allow children to cross in the school crosswalk.

Insurance and Pedestrian Accidents in Gilbert

Arizona mandates all motorists carry auto insurance that at least meets the state’s minimum liability requirements. The minimum liability coverages are found in ARS 28-4009 and include the following minimal limits:

  • $25,000 of bodily injury coverage for one victim
  • $50,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident for 2+ victims
  • $15,000 of property damage coverage

Despite the mandatory insurance law, many drivers in Arizona persist in driving while uninsured. If an uninsured motorist causes a pedestrian accident, it can be much harder for the pedestrian to recover compensation for their injuries and losses. An experienced attorney at Lamber Goodnow can review the case and investigate whether any other potential sources of recovery might be available to pay damages to a pedestrian following an accident with an uninsured driver.

A second problem occurs when a motorist only has the state’s minimum liability insurance and collides with a pedestrian, causing serious injuries. When someone suffers severe injuries in a pedestrian accident, their medical expenses and other losses can quickly exceed the minimum bodily injury limit required in Arizona.

Because of these issues, Arizona requires auto insurance companies to offer uninsured and underinsured motorists coverage (UM/UIM) to their insureds when they purchase auto insurance policies. While this coverage is optional, you should consider buying it. It is relatively inexpensive and can help to protect you if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.

If you have UM/UIM coverage and are injured in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you can file a claim with your insurance company. Your UM/UIM policy will cover your losses up to your policy limits when a driver is uninsured. If the driver is underinsured, your policy will pay up to its policy limits the difference between your losses and what the underinsured motorist’s policy pays.

Types of Pedestrian Accident Injuries

Pedestrians who are struck by cars are much likelier to be seriously injured or killed than those who are involved in other types of traffic collisions. Some of the common injuries pedestrians suffer in motor vehicle collisions include the following:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Head, neck, and facial injuries
  • Thoracic injuries
  • Internal organ damage
  • Crush injuries
  • Pelvic fractures
  • Hip fractures
  • Fractures of the extremities
  • Road rash
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Permanent paralysis
  • Severe lacerations
  • Death

The types of injuries and their severity will be affected by the speed at which the vehicle was traveling, the part of the body that was impacted, the victim’s height, and others. Most pedestrians who are struck by cars suffer multiple injuries that require long periods of recovery.

Compensation in a Pedestrian Accident Case

The compensation amount that might be available in a pedestrian accident case will vary based on the facts, the severity of the injuries, and other factors. For this reason, there isn’t a set value that a pedestrian accident claim is worth. Your attorney will carefully review the facts and calculate the probable value of your claim in a fair settlement so that you have a better idea of what you might expect.

Pedestrian accident lawsuits involve claims for compensatory damages. These are monetary amounts that compensate accident victims for their economic and non-economic losses. Some of the types of damages that you might be able to recover following a pedestrian accident include the following:

  • Medical expenses, including the anticipated expenses of the future treatment you will need
  • Past income losses
  • Reduction in your ability to earn an income
  • Property losses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish/emotional trauma
  • Scarring/disfigurement
  • Disability
  • Loss of the enjoyment of life

Depending on the nature of the motorist’s conduct, punitive damages might be available. These are monetary amounts ordered in addition to a victim’s compensatory damages to punish and deter defendants whose actions were reckless, willful, or wanton. They are not available in every case and are instead reserved for the most egregious ones. For example, if a motorist sped up to hit you intentionally, punitive damages would likely be available. By contrast, if a motorist struck you when turning right while you were crossing in the crosswalk because they failed to look for pedestrians, punitive damages probably won’t be available.

FAQs: Gilbert Pedestrian Accident Lawsuits

Many people who have suffered injuries or lost loved ones in pedestrian accidents have questions about their rights and legal options. Here are a few of the most common questions people ask the attorneys at Lamber Goodnow.

Q: The Motorist's Auto Insurance Adjuster Asked Me for a Statement. Should I Give One?

A: You do not have a legal duty to talk to the motorist’s insurance company since you do not have an insurance contract with it. It is not a good idea for you to talk about your injuries or your accident without an attorney. If you are contacted by an adjuster from the motorist’s company, politely decline to discuss your accident and injuries. Let them know that you intend to speak to a personal injury lawyer at Lamber Goodnow. Once you retain a lawyer, the company will have to communicate directly with your attorney instead of talking to you. This helps to keep the insurance company from asking leading questions that could trip you up and potentially be harmful to your accident claim.

Q: Can I Sue the Motorist for the Death of My Loved One?

A: Whether you can sue the motorist who caused your loved one’s death depends on your relationship with the victim. Under ARS 12-612, Arizona limits the parties who can file wrongful death lawsuits to those who have the following relationships with the victim:

  • Wife or husband
  • Child/children
  • Parent/parents
  • Legal guardian

If none of these people exist, the victim’s executor or estate administrator can file a wrongful death lawsuit. In that situation, the money recovered will be paid to the estate for distribution to the heirs or beneficiaries.

Q: When Should I Talk to a Lawyer?

A: Ideally, you should speak to an attorney immediately after your pedestrian accident or your loved one’s death. When you retain a lawyer quickly, you are less likely to make mistakes that could harm your case. Your lawyer will also have more time to gather the evidence before it is lost.

If you wait, you must be aware of Arizona’s statutes of limitations found in ARS 12-542 for personal injury or wrongful death cases. Under the law, a lawsuit for a pedestrian accident involving injuries should be filed within two years of the accident. In a wrongful death pedestrian accident case, the lawsuit must be filed within two years of the victim’s death. If you wait beyond the limitations period, you will lose your ability to pursue compensation for your losses.

Q: Does Filing a Claim Mean That I Will Have to Go to Trial?

A: The vast majority of the pedestrian accident claims we handle are resolved before formal lawsuits are filed through careful negotiations with the insurance company. However, if the company refuses to offer a fair settlement, we will file a formal lawsuit and go through the litigation process. Even when a lawsuit is filed, many cases are still resolved short of trial. However, as experienced litigators, we are prepared to fight for your rights before a jury if necessary to secure the compensation you deserve.


 

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