Florida is one of the most dangerous states for pedestrians. One challenge a victim may face is understanding their rights. The last thing a victim wants to do is suffer financially after a pedestrian accident. There are some specific steps a victim should take following a pedestrian accident to preserve their rights. At Andrew Pickett Law, PLLC we are here to help pedestrian accident victims.
Following a Pedestrian Injury Accident
There are some specific things you should do immediately following an accident. These include:
- Notifying police
- Obtaining contact information for driver and witnesses
- Seeking medical attention immediately
- Contacting an accident injury attorney
Because of the insurance statutes in Florida, a victim has 15 days following a personal injury accident to seek medical care. Factually, since you have little protection from injury following these crashes, you will need to seek medical care.
If you are unable to take any of these steps for yourself, you need to have someone perform these tasks for you. Each step is important to protect you legally, and financially. Andrew Pickett Law, PLLC offers free consultations to pedestrian accident victims.
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Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Rules
Florida is a no-fault state, but every driver must maintain personal injury protection (PIP) liability coverage. This means if you are a driver and suffer an injury as a pedestrian, your initial claim will be filed with your own insurance company. These policies must be $10,000 at a minimum and your medical accident-related expenses would be covered up to the full amount of your policy.
Keep in mind, if you do not drive, but someone in your home does, their PIP coverage will still offer you the same protection. The challenge is understanding what happens if your losses are more than $10,000. This depends largely on a number of factors.
Stepping Outside Florida’s No-Fault Insurance
Before a pedestrian accident victim can step outside the no-fault system, there must be certain facts established. First, it would be important to determine the facts surrounding your injury:
- The person who struck you owed you a duty of care.
- Their breach of the duty of care was responsible for your injury.
- Your injury resulted in your expenses exceeding your PIP coverage.
Once these three factors are established, then you have to contend with what the law states about filing a suit against the responsible party. To do this you have to prove:
- Your injury resulted in the loss of an important bodily function – this loss must be significant and permanent.
- Your injury is permanent as determined by a medical doctor.
- Scarring or disfigurement is permanent and significant.
- Loss of life – the victim’s life was lost as a result of their injuries.
Should any of these conditions exist, Andrew Pickett Law, PLLC can help you seek compensation from the party responsible for the injury you suffered in a pedestrian accident.
Facing a legal challenge in Florida? Let us help you for free.
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Dealing with Legal Bills for a Pedestrian Accident Claim
Pedestrian accident victims who are covered under a PIP policy should notify their insurer about the accident. However, it is best to avoid getting into any detail about the accident unless you have had a consultation with a lawyer first. This is to protect your interests.
Insurance company adjusters have one goal in mind and that is to make sure they pay as little as possible when a claim is filed. They could offer you a small settlement, despite the extent of your injuries. Insurance companies also know the sooner they can get a claim resolved, the less chance they have of being responsible for additional losses a victim may suffer.
Insurance companies will try to take advantage of you following an accident. They anticipate that most victims are unfamiliar with the law and they also know that while you are recovering from an injury, your bills continue to come in while your income is lower. Andrew Pickett Law works hard to advocate on behalf of victims to ensure they are not taken advantage of by insurance companies.
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Dealing with Legal Bills for a Pedestrian Accident Claim
One of the most common questions we are asked about is the fees associated with hiring a lawyer to deal with a pedestrian accident claim. We believe you are entitled to recover your financial losses following an injury. We also understand your finances are challenging because you are not working.
At Andrew Pickett Law, we offer a free, no-obligation consultation. Should we determine your case is a good fit for our firm, we will accept your case on a contingency fee basis. What this means is you do not pay for our legal services out of pocket. Instead, that means that only if we are successful in obtaining a settlement on your behalf will we be paid for our services.
You get an advocate who will handle all negotiations, prepare your claim, and if needed, be prepared to take your case to court. All without having to lay out any money upfront. We get paid only if you get a settlement.
Florida Pedestrian Accident Statistics
It is easy to forget how dangerous traveling as a pedestrian is in Florida. Two sets of statistics drive home the fact that pedestrian travel is very dangerous. First, in the Pedestrian Danger Index (PDI) Florida has the dubious distinction of being named 7 times out of 10 in the top areas for pedestrian accidents.
Recent reports issued by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) show there were more than 8,000 pedestrian crashes which resulted in 6,304 injuries and 715 deaths in one recent year.
Trust Andrew Pickett Law for Your Pedestrian Accident Claim
Walking is a great way to get exercise, enjoy the weather, and see the sights in and around Florida. Unfortunately, too many pedestrians are injured or lose their lives every year in Florida. Andrew Pickett Law PLLC is here to help victims, or families who lose a loved one recover financially.
Our personal injury law office is prepared to offer pedestrian accident victims, or the family of someone who lost their life in a pedestrian accident a confidential consultation to discuss their legal options. Contact our office today by phone or fill out our online contact form.