A pedestrian is a person who is traveling on foot or using a human-powered machine rather than a motor or engine-powered machine. People who are traveling using any of the following count as pedestrians:
- Roller skates
- Roller blades
Pedestrians also include people who are walking or running. Pedestrians are protected from motor vehicles because of the sidewalks and walkways that they use to travel within the public right-of-way.
Which Car Insurance Policy Applies?
In almost every state, drivers are required to carry a minimum amount of auto insurance in the event of an accident. Each state has its own requirements so you will need to find out what they are from an insurance carrier in your area. For example, in Georgia, drivers must carry the minimum amount of $25,000 of bodily injury coverage per driver and $50,000 per accident.
States also differ legally in whether or not they are no-fault or not. At least a dozen states do not follow no-fault insurance laws, including Georgia.
Some states also require that auto insurance companies offer under or uninsured motorist coverage, also known as UIM coverage. This coverage protects drivers who are involved in an accident with an at-fault driver who does not have liability insurance, or when their liability limits are too low to cover their medical expenses. The victim’s UIM coverage would be used to pay for the victim’s medical bills, lost wages, etc.
Who Pays For Compensation?
Unfortunately, if the driver that caused the accident does not have insurance and does not have other assets, then the uninsured pedestrian may not be able to claim any compensation. But if the driver is insured, then their insurance will provide the compensation for their damages.
If a pedestrian has been hit by an uninsured or an underinsured motorist, then their own auto insurance policy can save them from being left without recourse. These policies are usually most helpful in hit-and-run cases where there is no liable party to go after. In the case when a pedestrian is injured and the at-fault driver cannot pay for the medical treatment and other damages, the victim’s own car insurance will cover them.
What To Do If You Have Been Injured
Your personal injury claim begins at the moment of your accident. There are steps that you can take that will help your personal injury case.
At The Scene of the Accident
Immediately after an accident, it is important to call 911 to have the police arrive and file a report. The dispatcher should also be informed of the physical condition of the victim, such as whether or not they are conscious.
Take photographs of the scene of the accident if you have a camera phone available and are in the condition to take pictures. You want to get wide shots that show the entirety of the accident scene as well as several close-ups of your injuries and the vehicle damage. Damage specialists and insurers have seen a lot of accidents and can glean a lot of information from clear photos of the damage done to the exterior and interior of the vehicle. Likewise, a doctor would be able to make a lot of helpful educated guesses about your prognosis based on photos of the injuries.
There are some tips to help you get the best pictures to use for your case:
- Include pictures of traffic signals as well as whether or not any signals are obstructed, and who clearly had the right of way
- If the vehicle left skid marks, then get images of those and include a wide view so that you include the totality of the scene.
- By getting pictures from the perspective of the other driver, you can show what their viewpoint was before the accident
- Include pictures of the license plates so that it is easy to identify which car belongs to which driver
Seek Medical Attention
The most important thing for you to be concerned about after an accident is your health and well-being. Georgiatrialfirm.com suggests that you seek medical attention right away for your injuries. Your health insurance may be used to cover your medical expenses, such as any surgeries you may need or other tests, such as X-rays or CT scans. You will need to collect the bills from all of the medical providers and make sure that you give them to your attorney.
Hire A Personal Injury Attorney
The insurance company is going to want you to file your claim within 24 to 72 hours. You want to speak to a personal injury attorney immediately before talking to anyone at the insurance company. The insurance companies are focused on saving themselves money. But a personal injury attorney is an advocate for you.
Another reason why you want to hire a personal injury right away is that there is a statute of limitations on personal injury cases. What this means is that there is a limited amount of time that each state gives people to bring a suit forward and to collect damages from the party they believe is liable for their injuries. Some crimes have no statute of limitations, which means that anyone can come forward and charge someone with a crime no matter how much time has passed. Murder, of course, is one such crime. But because injuries can heal or be aggravated by other events unrelated to an accident, each state has developed its own time limit for how long someone has to file their claim.
And the third reason why it is important to file your claim as early as possible is that it helps your case. An injury from a car accident, while you were using the sidewalk or crosswalk, can affect you for the rest of your life. You deserve to have an attorney who will fight for you and be an advocate for you so that you are not drowning in medical debt or getting a settlement that is far lower than you deserve.