Rock Hill Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
If you were recently injured in a pedestrian accident in the Rock Hill area, you have probably suffered injuries, devastating financial losses, and a significant impact on your quality of life.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that approximately 129,000 pedestrians were treated in emergency rooms for non-fatal vehicle crash injuries in a single recent year. The CDC also states that pedestrians are 1.5 times more likely than vehicle passengers to be killed in car crashes.
Because people are so vulnerable while walking, drivers must take extra care to watch out for them and keep them safe. When a driver fails in this duty, and you are injured as a result, you may be entitled to bring a personal injury claim against them to seek compensation for your losses.
If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian-car accident, you should immediately seek medical care, and then contact the Rock Hill pedestrian accident lawyers of Schiller & Hamilton. Our dedicated personal injury attorneys could help you understand your legal options during a free consultation.
What Compensation Is Available for South Carolina Pedestrian Accident Victims?
Pedestrian accidents are serious. Pedestrians have no protection from vehicles, so their injuries can be severe or fatal, and their other damages can be major. After your accident, you may have crippling injuries and many other damages––and they may be compensable.
One of our firm’s Rock Hill pedestrian accident lawyers can seek damages, which may include:
- Your medical bills, including bills for any emergency care and continual care
- Bills for rehabilitation, like physical therapy
- Assistive living bills, such as ones for home renovations to accommodate any long-term disabilities
- The earnings you can’t collect due to your injuries
- The loss of earning potential
- A lowered quality of life, if applicable
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental suffering
Compensation Available for the Families of Deceased Victims in Rock Hill
You may have lost a family member in a fatal pedestrian accident in South Carolina. If this is the case, you and your family can pursue wrongful death-related damages. Our firm can pursue:
- Your loss of spousal care
- Your children’s loss of parental care
- Mental and emotional suffering
- A decrease in income for your family
- Any final healthcare expenses, such as life support
- Funeral and burial costs
This is not a complete list of damages you can recover through legal action.
The Prevalence of Pedestrian Accidents
Many motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians occur at crosswalks or when pedestrians attempt to cross streets and roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 76 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred in urban areas as opposed to 26 percent in rural areas.
Moreover, 72 percent of fatalities occurred when pedestrians attempted to cross streets and roads outside of intersections and crosswalks, while 18 percent of fatalities occurred at intersections.
Pedestrian accidents can occur in other places, too. The NHTSA reported that 10 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred in locations such as roadsides, medians, parking zones, sidewalks, driveways, and shared-use paths.
Parking lanes, lots, garages, and driveways can be susceptible to these incidents, as the crowded, cramped conditions can make it difficult for less-attentive drivers to notice pedestrians around their vehicles.
If you were harmed while walking in any of these areas, a pedestrian accident attorney from our team could help you take legal action.
How do You Determine Fault in a Crosswalk Injury Case?
Drivers are expected to exercise greater care when driving in areas with pedestrians since pedestrians typically have the right of way. In many cases, the vehicle driver is at fault for a car accident with a pedestrian, especially if a driver fails to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk, runs a stop sign or stoplight, or is speeding.
In motor vehicle accident cases (including those involving pedestrians), many states use a system of comparative negligence where the jury or judge is asked to determine the percentage each party is at fault for the accident. The plaintiff’s damages are divided according to each party’s percentage of fault, such that if a pedestrian is found to be, for example, 10 percent responsible for the accident, their award would be reduced by that amount.
South Carolina uses a modified form of comparative negligence, in which a plaintiff must also be found less than majority at fault to be eligible to recover damages. A pedestrian who fails to cross the street or road at designated crosswalks, attempts to cross against oncoming traffic, or attempts to walk areas not designated for pedestrians, such as interstate highways, for example, may be found to have contributed to the accident.
In addition to the vehicle’s driver, other parties may be at fault for an accident, such as the owner of a road or parking lot that is found to be negligently designed and contributed to the accident. A Rock Hill lawyer familiar with pedestrian accident cases will be able to help in determining fault.
How to Prove Fault in a Rock Hill Pedestrian Accident Case
Determining fault can be complicated, but actually, proving another party’s fault can be much more complicated. To accomplish this in your case, your Rock Hill pedestrian accident lawyer will have to establish that the other party was negligent.
Establishing negligence requires showing:
- The other party owed you a duty of care: This is a responsibility to act carefully to prevent any harm from befalling others.
- The party breached their duty: This means the other party acted in a way that wasn’t careful and responsible.
- The other party caused your collision: The other’s actions caused your accident and resulting injuries.
- You have injury-related damages: You have various losses stemming from your accident and injuries, such as property damage costs and pain and suffering.
Here’s How Your Rock Hill Pedestrian Accident Attorney Will Help
In addition to proving fault and liability, your lawyer can provide a number of other invaluable services, such as:
- Investigating your accident: First, your attorney will investigate the circumstances around your accident, such as whether the driver was speeding or intoxicated. This will help them determine fault and liability for your losses.
- Gathering evidence: During investigations, your attorney will search for and collect evidence, like the police report, traffic camera footage, and witnesses’ cell phone pictures.
- Consulting with field experts. Your attorney can also search for and find experts who can provide evidence that supports your case. For example, your lawyer can find a medical professional who can attest to the cost of your medical expenses.
- Valuating your damages: After your lawyer identifies your damages, they can determine what you’re owed. They’ll use their knowledge to calculate your pain, suffering, and other injury-related losses.
- Negotiating a settlement: Negotiations with an insurer can be difficult – especially if it’s unwilling to compromise. Your lawyer has ways of convincing an insurer to compromise and negotiate in good faith.
- Suing the other party: If, for whatever reason, negotiations aren’t successful, your lawyer can sue the other party and take them to court. There, your lawyer will argue your case to a judge rather than continue insurance negotiations.
Your Lawyer Will File Your Case Within the Statute of Limitations
If you have severe injuries or lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, you can file a lawsuit to recover damages. However, you must meet your case’s filing deadlines to preserve your right to legal action.
Per South Carolina Ann. § 15-3-530, you generally have three years to file your injury or wrongful death lawsuit. It’s vital to file your lawsuit within this period because, if you don’t, you could lose the right to seek damages through legal action. This could hurt your chances of recovering damages and complicate the claims process.
Common Crosswalk Accident Injuries in Rock Hill
Being hit by a car as a pedestrian is likely to result in serious and life-threatening injuries. These injuries may include:
- Broken bones
- Ligament and tendon damage and tears
- Internal organ damage
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Coma/vegetative state
These injuries may result in expensive medical care, possibly for the rest of your life, in addition to the loss of working ability and wages, and pain and suffering. Through a personal injury action, you can pursue financial compensation to cover these and other losses.
Especially if the car is traveling at high speeds, many collisions with people on foot tragically result in death. If your loved one passed away in a crosswalk accident, a compassionate attorney can help you pursue a wrongful death claim.
Through this claim, you may be eligible to receive compensation for funeral expenses, loss of consortium, and loss of financial support, among other losses.
What Steps Should You Take Following A Pedestrian Accident?
If you are a pedestrian hit by a car, you or someone at the scene should immediately call 911. In the shock and chaos of the accident, you may not realize that you have suffered serious injuries.
Remain at the scene. Paramedics will determine whether you are okay to go home or should go to the hospital for further examination and treatment. Police will also investigate the accident. The police report may be helpful when establishing the fault of the driver or other parties. You should also obtain the names and contact information of any witnesses to the accident.
If you are not transported to the hospital from the scene of the accident, at some point, you should visit the hospital or your primary care physician to determine whether you have suffered any injuries from the accident requiring treatment.
Finally, avoid making statements to any witnesses, the driver of the vehicle that hit you, or any insurance companies, as those statements may be used against you in a subsequent claim. Contact a lawyer as soon as possible so that they can handle all communications regarding the pedestrian accident on your behalf.
We Encourage You to Consider Legal Help as Soon as Possible
By contacting your lawyer soon, you give them more time to build and strengthen your case. This allows them to anticipate complications, consult with experts, and calculate your losses to seek what you need. They can also prevent the insurance company from unfairly taking advantage of you. For instance, it may offer less than you’re owed or bully you into quickly resolving your claim.
As noted, you generally have three years to file your case. Failing to follow this deadline could hurt your right to damages. So, we encourage you to seek our team’s legal help as soon as you can.
About Our Pedestrian Accident Lawyers in Rock Hill
For many years, our personal injury lawyers have helped accident victims (including victims of pedestrian accidents) in South Carolina. We’ve seen how these accidents affect not only the victims but also their families.
When you partner with our team, you can expect us to:
- Honestly assess your case and your legal options
- Stand up against an insurer that may otherwise take advantage of you
- Bolster your case with evidence from multiple sources
- Hire experts to provide invaluable corroborating evidence and testimony
- Answer all of your questions and represent you and your loved ones to the best of our ability
Additionally, our attorneys are very affordable for most clients. This is because we offer our services on a contingency-fee basis, so our clients don’t pay us unless we recover compensation for them.
They simply pay us out of the compensation amount they receive. Also, we offer free initial consultations where you can explore your options at no obligation.
Hiring a Rock Hill Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one was struck by a vehicle, our experienced Rock Hill pedestrian accident attorneys can help you pursue maximum compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other accident-related losses.If you or a loved one was struck by a car while on foot, call a Rock Hill pedestrian accident lawyer for help pursuing recovery.
Contact the attorneys of Schiller & Hamilton for more information and to set up a free consultation. Our team will discuss your accident and explain your legal options as an injured pedestrian.