Massachusetts, particularly the metro Boston area, is a busy place for pedestrians and drivers. Streets are often teeming with activity, and rush hour is more like rush hours. Unfortunately, amidst all this action, pedestrian accidents can occur. Pedestrian accidents are frightening to everyone involved and often result in serious injuries or death. In 2012, pedestrian fatalities accounted for 14% of fatalities in traffic crashes. The vast majority of pedestrian accidents (70%) occurred at a non-intersection site, which means many of these accidents involved speeding. If you’ve been injured in an accident, remember that you don’t have to face the damages alone.
When a pedestrian is hit by a car, he or she often sustains serious damages that require extensive medical treatment. Unlike motorists, pedestrians have no safeguards, like seatbelts and airbags, to protect them in an accident. Often times, victims end up with broken bones, brain or spinal cord injuries, sever lacerations, and more. Injuries of such a severe nature usually mean that the victim must pursue a personal injury claim to pay for medical bills and other expenses.
Because Massachusetts is a no-fault state, the victim will be covered under his or her own insurance if the injuries are not serious. But what kind of insurance covers a pedestrian accident? Victims can seek coverage under their own health insurance or Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance under their auto policy. If injuries and damages are severe, the victim may be able to go outside his or her insurance and file a personal injury claim. An experienced attorney can help victims of pedestrian accidents prove negligence and seek compensation for their expenses.
An insurance company may try and disprove your claim in an effort to pay out less compensation. In this case, claimants will want to file a personal injury suit outside of insurance. The process of filing a personal injury claim after a pedestrian accident is no different than that of an accident involving two drivers. The plaintiff will still need to prove negligence to be eligible for compensation.
Negligence usually falls on the driver in this situation, but this is not always the case. There are times when the pedestrian may be held liable for his or her actions, such as jaywalking or otherwise traveling in the street illegally. However, because Massachusetts follows a comparative negligence clause, a pedestrian only partially at fault can still seek some amount of compensation. This is why seeking an experienced personal injury attorney is important.
Attorneys will collect documents like police reports and witness statements to corroborate your case and prove the driver’s negligence. Likewise, keep an accurate record of all medical and other expenses you incur as a result of the accident. You may be able to receive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more, but only if you have detailed records of your expenditure.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident and are having trouble getting enough compensation to cover your expenses, you may want to consider filing a personal injury suit. You may be able to receive a significantly larger sum that what your insurance company is offering. Contact Sweeney Merrigan Law today to review your case.
We fight for our clients aggressively to get them every last penny they need to get their lives back on track. They treat all clients with compassion and a personal approach. The attorneys at Sweeney Merrigan Law serve clients across Massachusetts, and we have a storied history of delivering consistently excellent results for our clients.