The impact of a motor vehicle against a pedestrian often leaves the latter with severe injuries, and in some cases, victims may never make a full recovery. Even in minor collisions that occur at low speeds, pedestrians are afforded no protection against the size and speed of a car.
While the injuries endured by the plaintiff in a pedestrian accident case may be severe, the plaintiff still must prove that the driver was at fault for the collision to collect compensation. This can be a complex process, and unrepresented plaintiffs can find themselves quickly overwhelmed.
A relentless Omaha pedestrian accident lawyer could work to conduct their own investigation into the accident, shield plaintiffs from aggressive insurance companies, and make demands for every dollar of compensation that they deserve. With one of the dedicated personal injury attorneys at Berry Law Firm handling the details of your case, you could focus on healing physically and getting your life back on track.
Proving a Motorist is At-Fault in an Omaha Pedestrian Accident
Most collisions between pedestrians and vehicles are accidents. In other words, an injured walker usually cannot claim that the driver of the car intended to cause their injuries. However, Nebraska law considers some acts taken behind the wheel to be so careless that the driver must accept responsibility for any injuries that result. This is known as the legal theory of negligence.
To prove negligence, a plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty to protect their wellbeing, that this duty was broken, and that this failure directly caused their injuries. In pedestrian accident cases, there is always a duty on the part of the driver to protect the pedestrian, since all drivers assume such a duty whenever they get behind the wheel. Furthermore, determining that an accident caused a specific injury is often straightforward if a doctor’s report links the accident to the injury in question.
Where most pedestrian accident cases become complicated is in proving that the driver failed in their duty to protect a pedestrian, also known as a breach of duty. In most cases, a plaintiff must show that the defendant driver was violating a rule of the road or at the very least was driving in a careless manner. Common examples of qualifying actions include:
- Failing to yield to a pedestrian in a cross walk
- Ignoring a stop sign
- Texting while driving
An Omaha pedestrian accident attorney could help gather this vital evidence and pursue ensuing cases in a timely fashion. Working quickly can be particularly important in such cases, since Nebraska Revised Statute §25-207—the statute of limitations—states that all plaintiffs must file their cases within four years from the date of injury.
Claimable Damages for Injured Pedestrians
At the core of all pedestrian accident cases—and indeed, all personal injury cases—is physical harm. This harm does not need to be life-threatening, but it does need to require medical attention. Typical examples of such injuries that may factor into pedestrian accident cases include:
- Broken bones
- Separated joints
- Severe cuts and scrapes
- Spinal cord injuries
In addition to providing compensation for all medical costs associated with the injury, an at-fault defendant may be obligated to make the plaintiff “whole” again. This can involve providing payments to reimburse a plaintiff for any missed time at work, as well as compensation intended to pay the plaintiff for any mental anguish connected to the accident. A hard-working pedestrian accident lawyer in Omaha could work with a plaintiff to properly valuate their case and demand appropriate compensation from insurance companies.
An Omaha Pedestrian Accident Attorney Could Protect Victims’ Rights
It may be easy to assume that the court will automatically blame a driver for any collision with a pedestrian. This belief leads many injured plaintiffs to try to take on the insurance company without an attorney.
The fact of the matter is that a plaintiff in a pedestrian accident case must prove that the defendant driver was negligent. This is a complex legal analysis that examines the actions of not just the driver but also of the injured individual.
An Omaha pedestrian accident lawyer from our firm could help by working to prove defendant negligence and protect your right to collect compensation. Our attorneys understand the immense impact that these incidents can have on someone’s life, but they also know that you are injured—not broken. Call on Berry Law to get started on your case and take charge of your situation.