Being hit by a car as a pedestrian - Legal rights
It does not matter if you use public transportation or if you are a driver, at some point in the day, everyone is a pedestrian. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, an organization comprised of state highway officials from around the country, pedestrians now account for roughly 16 percent of all motor vehicle deaths. GHSA's latest Spotlight on Highway Safety Report on pedestrian fatalities projects that 6,227 pedestrians lost their lives on U.S. roads in 2018, the highest annual number since 1990. This represents a 4% increase from 2017. Our cities and communities are becoming more pedestrian friendly. As our cities become more urban, sharing the streets and road with pedestrians will become essential. As our towns grow there will be a need for better pedestrian safety laws.
As a pedestrian hit by a car, your primary legal claim will likely be against the driver of the car that hit you. However, depending on the circumstances, you may also be able to bring a claim against other parties such as a business or a municipality, for example, the city or state. It is important to talk to an attorney that specializes in personal injury law so that the attorney can review your situation to determine if other parties can be held accountable. It is important to do this as soon as possible because claims against some municipalities can have a much shorter statute of limitations due a tort claim notice that must be provided to that party usually within 180 days. You may also have additional claims against your own personal auto insurance. As you can see there can be numerous claims that may be applicable.
At Bobadilla Law, we handle all aspects of the pedestrian claim from opening the numerous claims needed to prosecuting your case in front of a jury. At Bobadilla Law, we have experienced and in-depth knowledge of pedestrian law. We help our clients get through the difficult stressful time.
Immediately After the Crash
If you are involved in any type of pedestrian crash, it is important to do the following:
1. Take photographs of the crash
2. Take photographs of the car that hit you including the license plates
3. Take photographs of the ID/Driver’s license of the driver that hit you
4. Obtain the driver’s auto insurance information
5. Obtain names, addresses, and phone numbers of all witnesses
6. Call the police
7. Seek medical attention
8. Report the claim to your auto insurance
Seek Medical Care
If you need immediate medical help you should go to the emergency room. If the pain is not severe, it is recommended that you still be seen by a medical doctor. You should make an appointment with your primary care provider as soon as possible. The sooner you see a medical provider the sooner you will be able to start your recovery.
Paying the Medical Bills
In Oregon state, your personal auto insurance is primary. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) covers your medical bills whether you were at fault or not. Your coverage limits will depend on your auto policy, however, the minimum coverage allowable in Oregon is $15,000 or two years from the date of the crash whichever comes first of reasonable and necessary medical expenses. If you are not a driver, thus, do not have auto insurance, then your personal health insurance steps in. In Oregon, you may also be able to make a claim for personal injury protection (PIP) against the driver that hit you. In theory, you could have up to $30,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) benefits. It is important to seek the legal advice of an attorney that is well versed in the area of representing pedestrians.
If you are looking for a knowledgeable and compassionate attorney to help you pursue a claim as a pedestrian contact us. We provide FREE consultations. Our Pedestrian Law attorney in Oregon evaluates your claims and assists you to plan your next steps.