Phoenix Pedestrian Accident Attorneys Answer FAQs
As a parent you fear that your child will be hit by a car whenever they're out to play near a road, walking to school, or just walking down the street. As an adult, you don't think about the possibility that you, too, could be hit by a car, just doing the things you normally do, like checking the mail, walking the dog, or going out for a jog. Whether you or your child are involved in a pedestrian collision, there's a good chance that you're going to have a lot of questions. And it's important to find answers that you can truly understand quickly so you can make the important decisions that have to be made for your Phoenix pedestrian accident claim and your future. Here are some of those frequently asked questions.
Are There Laws That Protect Pedestrians in Arizona?
There are multiple laws in the state of Arizona that provide motorists with guidance about their interactions with pedestrians on the road. Motorists are required to yield for pedestrians at crosswalks, to stay in their lane of travel to avoid hitting a pedestrian in the shoulder of the road or on a sidewalk, and to exercise due caution in high foot traffic areas (and low foot traffic areas, too) in order to ensure that they do not hit a pedestrian. When motorists do not follow these laws they put themselves and pedestrians at risk, can be cited for their actions, and can be held legally liable for their negligence.
What Am I Supposed to Do if I've Been Injured in a Crash?
The first thing you should do is seek medical care if you are injured. Talk to the police and tell them the truth of what happened. You may also need to talk to the insurance company but if you are considering hiring an attorney, we would suggest you call the attorney and let the attorney talk to the insurance company for you. If you fail to do these things you may lose your right to hold the motorist that hit you with their vehicle legally liable for their actions. Even if you feel fine after being hit by a car, you could have injuries that you don't yet know exist. Adrenaline, after all, is a tricky thing, and can make it so that you don't feel pain. In the event that you need a great deal of medical attention, you will likely want to file a claim against the adverse driver. That's where hiring an attorney can help you and put you in the best position of protecting yourself.
What If I am Partially At Fault for the Accident? Can I Still Receive Compensation?
Yes, but probably not the full amount. The state of Arizona follows a doctrine of pure comparative negligence (A.R.S. § 12-2501 et seq.) Without going into too far into the minutia, the law essentially states that whatever "percentage" of the accident can be attributed to the plaintiff is subsequently subtracted from the total damages owed by the defendant. For example, if a judge finds that you are at least 25% at-fault for your cross-walk accident by stepping outside the painted line area, you may only receive 75% of total compensation possible from the person who struck you.
Should I Contact My Insurance Company If I've Been Hit by a Car?
Yes. But beware of what you volunteer. Informing your policy holder of the incident and when it occurred is enough. In many cases unfortunately, victims supply their company with too much information which, in turn, comes back to haunt them in the settlement process. Keep it simple.
How Long Do I Have to File My Claim?
In most instances, the statute of limitations in Arizona allows a time frame of two years, starting the moment after your accident (A.R.S. § 12-541 et seq.) However, if you are filing against the city or local municipality, it could be as little as 6 months. In either case, failing to submit your claim prior to the deadline can, and in all likelihood will, result in the forfeiture of your claim. In essence, the statute of limitations exists to prevent lawsuit abuse and the submission of frivolous claims, decades after a potential incident.
Do I Need A Phoenix Pedestrian Accident Attorney for My Personal Injury Claim?
A doctor, surgeons, and physical therapists will help you through your physical recovery. But if you need help getting the financial assistance you need from the insurance company, and not just what they want to pay you (which is typically much less than you'll need or than you deserve), then you shouldn't be afraid to reach out to a Phoenix personal injury attorney with experience handling pedestrian injuries. The right lawyer will offer you sound advice and a complementary review of your case, even if you end up going it alone. It's always a good idea to just talk to an attorney and to get your questions answered. If you don't speak to a lawyer, you will never know what you don't know. Contact The Husband & Wife Law Team today at (602) 267-1280 for a free consultation.