New York Personal Injury Attorneys
What Are My Legal Rights if I am the Victim in a Pedestrian Accident?
We often hear about collisions that occur between two or more vehicles, but what about if you are a pedestrian who is struck by a vehicle? Here, the New York car accident attorneys at Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo P.C. detail the necessary steps to take as a pedestrian if you are hit by a car or the victim of a hit-and-run.
Document the Accident Immediately, If Able
If you are a pedestrian who is struck by a vehicle and injured while crossing the street, in a crosswalk, or even while walking on the sidewalk, it’s important to document the scene of the accident right away, if you are physically capable. This consists of noting the driver’s license plate number, taking photographs of the damage and your injuries, and collecting the names, statements and contact information of any witnesses. This is important for proving that the driver did in fact act negligently, causing the accident. It is also necessary for negotiating the proper settlement amount with the insurance company. Any documentation and photo evidence you can take of the accident can help you later during the discovery process of a lawsuit.
Contact the Insurance Company and Law Enforcement
In order to receive the appropriate settlement amount from the driver’s insurance company, you will need to provide ample documentation demonstrating the extent of your injuries and the extent to which the other driver was at fault. You will also want to contact your local police department immediately following the accident in order to file a proper police report if it has not already been done. A police officer on the scene will file an accident report and document the evidence.
Collect As Much Evidence as Possible if You Were Involved in a Hit-and-Run
If you are the victim of a hit-and-run, many of the same steps still apply. While hit-and-runs are infuriating, take the time to calm down and avoid making any irrational decisions. You still want to ensure that you take down any noteworthy information. For example, if you were able to catch the make and model of the perpetrator’s vehicle, as well as their license plate number, before they drove away, be sure to make a note of it. Also, if there were any witnesses involved, be sure to take down their information and testimony so you can inform your local police department and build your case.
Seek Out Necessary Medical Treatment
Perhaps most importantly, you will want to seek out medical treatment immediately following the accident. Getting hit by a car is serious and even the most seemingly minor collisions can result in severe injuries and damage. Even if you do not immediately feel like you are injured or hurt, your adrenaline could be pumping and preventing you from feeling the full extent of your injuries. You will want to consult your primary care physician, or even go to the hospital, to ensure you receive proper medical attention and receive treatment for any injuries sustained. It’s doubly important to obtain medical treatment after a pedestrian accident, as the insurance company may assume that your injuries were not that serious if you delayed treatment or did not receive treatment altogether. This could decrease your total payout amount. Ultimately, do not wait to seek out medical attention following your accident, for the benefit of both your health and your potential settlement.
File a Claim with the Help of a Car Accident Attorney at SPBMCC
If you were struck by a vehicle as a pedestrian and suffered injuries as a result, it is imperative you bring your case to an experienced car accident attorney, such as an attorney at Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo P.C. In most cases, a pedestrian who is struck by a vehicle is not at fault, especially if they were struck while in a crosswalk, while crossing the street when they had the right of way, or while the driver was distracted. The benefit to working with a lawyer is that they can determine if your accident was caused primarily by the driver who struck you, or by the fault of the city or local municipality (for example, a broken traffic light that led to the collision).
Furthermore, a skilled attorney can evaluate the unique circumstances of your case and analyze the evidence that has been collected in an effort to recover the most amount of damages possible. Especially if your injuries have led to extensive medical bills, a loss of wages or severe pain and suffering, every dollar counts toward making a full recovery. If you were injured in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens, or the Bronx, call us at (212)-732-9000 to discuss how we can help you with your auto accident case today. You can also contact us here.