Pedestrians often sustain catastrophic or even fatal injuries in car accidents. Unlike people inside an auto, they lack the protection that a vehicle affords its passengers. At Frankl Kominsky, we understand the gravity of pedestrian collisions. Our car crash lawyers offer aggressive representation to individuals who were hurt in an accident near West Palm Beach or the surrounding area.Pedestrian Accidents
People are struck by careless drivers in Palm Beach County on a daily basis. The state’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reported over 8,258 pedestrian crashes in 2012. Over 7,400 individuals were hurt in traffic accidents, and 473 people suffered fatal injuries. Children, teenagers, and the elderly are more likely to be involved in pedestrian accidents.
Factors that can cause this type of collision include:
- Excessive speeding
- Drunk or distracted driving
- Driver reaction time
Palm Beach County motorists must have personal injury protection coverage, but the state only requires $10,000 in insurance. This amount is not enough to cover many serious pedestrian crashes. A lawsuit may help a victim recover adequate compensation.Hold Negligent Drivers Accountable for Your Injuries
Florida gives victims the opportunity to take legal action against those responsible for causing their harm. You can sue the party you believe is at fault for your pedestrian accident injuries. If you can prove that the defendant in your case is legally responsible, or liable, for the crash, you can potentially recover damages.
When a car strikes a pedestrian, it is often because the driver was negligent. You can prove liability if you can show negligence, which is when someone fails to use the care that a reasonable person would have used in a similar scenario. As the victim, you have to show that the driver:
- Had a duty to exercise care under the circumstances;
- Failed to use the proper level of care;
- Caused your injuries as a result of this failure; and
- Forced you to incur actual damages.
Florida motorists have an obligation to use care behind the wheel. They must abide by traffic rules and regulations, and they also must use whatever precautions are reasonable given the specific circumstances. For example, a driver should slow down when driving near a school. You must be able to prove that the defendant breached the duty of care, such as by failing to yield at an intersection or running a red light.
You also need to show that the driver’s breach caused your injuries. You can only prove negligence if you can establish a sufficiently close link between the defendant’s careless actions and the accident. You then have to show actual damages related to your injuries, such as medical bills.
The defendant in your case may argue that you are to blame for the crash. For instance, you may be partially negligent if you failed to cross at a designated crosswalk that was available to you. You may still file a claim against the driver, but a court will assess whether your own carelessness contributed to the accident and to what extent. Florida follows a pure comparative fault rule in negligence cases. You can recover a reduced amount of damages as long as you are not fully responsible for your injuries.Damages and Time Limits
If you are successful in your lawsuit, you can possibly recover damages to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, among other types of harm. If your relative lost his or her life in a pedestrian accident, you can pursue compensation through a wrongful death claim. Potential damages can include your relative’s medical and burial expenses, as well as your own loss of companionship.
Florida sets specific time limits on injury and wrongful death claims. Generally, a negligence-based claim must be filed within four years from the accident. Wrongful death lawsuits have a two-year statute of limitations.Car Accident Attorneys Serving West Palm Beach
At Frankl Kominsky, we are passionate about helping auto collision victims pursue the compensation they need for their injuries. Our auto accident lawyers have helped countless West Palm Beach pedestrians assert their claims for damages against careless drivers. We can review your case and discuss what legal options may be available to you. If we decide to move forward, we will tenaciously pursue your right to damages. We serve clients in communities such as Delray Beach, Lake Worth, and Palm Beach Gardens. Call us at (855) 800-8000 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation. We are fluent in Spanish and Creole.