Car accidents between vehicles and pedestrians are an unfortunately common occurrence. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, roughly 400,000 car accidents happen yearly. Even more devastating is that over 8,000 of these accidents involve personal injuries to pedestrians. If you, or a loved one, sustained injuries as a pedestrian in a car accident, contacting Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers at (855) 529-0269 to get started with a free consultation.
Steps After a Car Accident
“The pedestrian has the right of way,” is a commonly known adage, but not always a legally correct one. Accidents involving vehicles and pedestrians have increased, and laws have changed significantly regarding the establishment of fault. You should follow these important steps if you have been injured as a pedestrian in an accident with a vehicle:
File a Police Report
FL § 316.065 states that you are required to report an accident that involves a car if any of the following occur:
- Damage to property estimated to be over $500
If you have been injured as a pedestrian in a car accident in the state of Florida, filing a full police report will allow the police the opportunity to not only make a full legal report but also interview witnesses and preserve evidence regarding your accident. This documentation becomes significant if we decide to pursue legal action and file a lawsuit.
Obtain a Complete Medical Evaluation
As a pedestrian injured in a vehicular accident, you have likely suffered serious injuries. Your health and safety are paramount. Often, an ambulance will arrive at the scene of an accident, and a medical professional can assess your physical condition. However, if you do not receive medical attention immediately after the accident, you must seek a complete medical evaluation as soon as possible, at least within 72 hours. While taking this step is important for your health, it also provides expert documentation regarding any medical issues you may have. These reports will help us establish your personal injury claim.
Document Everything Possible
While having official police reports and medical evaluations are important, we can build your personal injury case on any additional documentation you provide, including:
- Use your cell phone to take photographs of the entire accident scene, including the vehicle, and where you were located, from every possible angle, and of all injuries suffered, if possible.
- Obtain as much information as possible, including insurance, driver’s license, and license plate numbers with all parties involved in the accident.
- Obtain all witnesses’ contact information, which will help us obtain witness statements later, if necessary.
- Maintain records of any correspondence or information that relates to the accident, such as medical bills, doctor’s notes, lost wages, etc.
- If appropriate, maintain a personal diary of any physical symptoms.
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Florida Accident Law
Florida has laws that directly affect your rights if you were a victim as a pedestrian. A St. Petersburg pedestrian accident lawyer can help you understand these laws and how they may affect your legal case.
Florida is one of just a handful of states that is a no-fault state, which means the insurance companies of everyone involved in an accident must pay regardless of guilt. Additionally, FL § 627.736 states you must maintain a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection insurance (PIP), along with $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL) if you operate a vehicle.
Florida Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations refers to laws that restrict the allotted time to file a lawsuit for compensation of your personal injuries as a pedestrian in an accident. According to Florida’s statute of limitations under FL § 95.11, you must file your lawsuit within four years of the date of the accident.
Florida follows FL § 768.81 a pure comparative fault law when both parties are negligent for the accident. The following are possible ways that both the driver and the pedestrian could be at fault in an accident.
1. Driver at fault: a driver may blatantly fail to follow the rules of the road. Some examples are as follows:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Failure to stop where required, such as a red light, stop sign, crosswalk, or other marked sign.
- Driving recklessly
- Failure to obey posted traffic signs or laws
2. Pedestrian at fault: drivers are required to follow the rules of the road, and a pedestrian also has a legal responsibility to exercise reasonable care or prudence when on the roadways. Examples of a pedestrian failing to follow the rules of the road are as follows:
- Throwing items onto the roadway and disrupting traffic
- Intentionally distracting a driver
- Walking on roadways when under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Crossing against any posted sign or traffic signal
- Illegally walking on highways or areas where pedestrians are not allowed
While you may be partially at fault as a pedestrian, do not let the fact that Florida follows this law deter you from pursuing a lawsuit for the compensation owed to you. Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers can help you navigate these complicated legal matters and help you understand your rights.
Contact a St. Petersburg pedestrian accident lawyer to determine if you have a valid personal injury case.
Chalik & Chalik Pedestrian Accidents Lawyer Near Me (855) 529-0269
Contact an Attorney
If you have suffered a personal injury as a pedestrian in an accident with a vehicle due to the negligent actions of another, you should contact a St. Petersburg pedestrian accident lawyer as soon as possible. Deadlines for filing claims are strict, and we can help you file a lawsuit and obtain the compensation owed to you. Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers will help you understand your legal rights and help you determine your legal options to receive just compensation.
Call Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers today at (855) 529-0269 to get started with a free consultation.
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