Springfield Pedestrian Accident Lawyer for Hit and Runs, Car Crashes, and other Accidents
Each year, approximately 6,000 or more pedestrians are fatally injured in the United States, and about 137,000 more pedestrians were treated in emergency rooms with non-fatal injuries.1 This amounts to one pedestrian fatality every 88 minutes.2 According to government research, most pedestrian deaths occur in urban areas at night, and almost one-half of fatalities involve alcohol.3
Unlike vehicle crashes where air bags, crumple zones, and other structural components offer some level of protection in crashes, pedestrians do not have any safety equipment when struck by vehicles, motorcycles, or other roadway users. Consequently, their injuries tend to be severe, often involving broken bones, severe lacerations, traumatic brain injury, and paralysis. Tragically, a high percentage of injuries result in death.
Call Us for a Free Consult – We Can Help
As Springfield pedestrian accident lawyers, we can help you pursue the justice and compensation you deserve if you were struck while walking, or if your family member died as a result of being hit while walking. We represent clients in the greater Springfield area, as well as throughout Western Massachusetts, including Holyoke, Chicopee, Northampton and the surrounding communities.
We invite you to call our office at 413-781-0000 to schedule a free consultation or to contract us through the contact form or live chat on our website. There is no fee unless we secure a settlement or win a lawsuit. We also advance all litigation expenses while a case is ongoing, so you do not have to worry about how you will afford to put forward a strong case.
We Look Forward to Speaking with You!
What Should I Do After a Pedestrian Accident?
The first priority after being injured in an accident is to seek medical attention. Even if an individual does not believe they have sustained a severe injury, it is still advisable to consult with a physician as the effect of some injuries – like a concussion – may not be readily apparent.
Retaining Legal Counsel
The more time that passes between the onset of an injury and the filing of a claim, the more difficult it can be to get in touch with witnesses and collect crucial evidence. If you hire our firm, we can get to work right away, so that evidence can be preserved and a strong case can be built for maximum compensation.
Accident Scene Investigation
In addition to seeking care, it is critical to secure as much crash scene proof as possible. This can include photographs of the scene, contact information of witnesses, insurance information, and police reports. We urge pedestrian crash victims and families to call us as soon as possible to so that we can conduct an accident scene investigation as soon as possible, preferably before changes are made to the accident scene.
As an example, in some cases, municipalities may be liable for a pedestrian accident. In these cases, the municipality potentially may take action to make the crash scene safer, such as installing lights, cross walks, or other safety changes. It will be important in a pedestrian accident case to show what the accident scene looked like before these changes.
We will also want to interview any witnesses as soon as possible, while their recollection of the incident is still fresh in their minds. Additionally, when a pedestrian crash occurs in an urban area, video of the crash may be available from security cameras on surrounding stores. It is critical to seek such video soon after a crash, before the video is deleted.
Can I Sue If My Loved One Was Intoxicated or Not in a Cross Walk?
Massachusetts is a comparative negligence state, which means that a victim (or a victim’s family) can seek compensation to the extent that another person(s) or entities were also at fault, so long as the victim was 50% or less responsible for the injuries.
For instance, if a pedestrian was found to be 20% liable because she did not cross the street at a cross walk or intersection, and a speeding driver was found to be 80% liable, and the total damages were $100,000, the driver would be liable to the pedestrian for $80,000. If, on the other hand, the pedestrian was found to be 51% liable, than the driver would not owe the pedestrian for any damages (since the pedestrian was found to be more than 50% at fault).
What are the Leading Causes of Pedestrian Fatalities?
Fatal collisions involving pedestrians are often caused by:
- Intoxicated Driving
- Turning Through Crosswalks Without Looking
- Running Traffic Lights
- Distracted Driving and Tired Driving
- Illegally Parked Cars That Make It Difficult to See People
- Lack of Proper Lighting During the Nighttime
- A Combination of the Above Factors
In many pedestrian accidents, both drivers and municipalities may be liable. In addition to the driver, a municipality may be liable for permitting a dangerous condition to exist. As an example, in some locations there may have been past pedestrian accidents, but a municipality may not have taken any steps to prevent future accidents. As pedestrian crash attorneys, we seek to identify all those responsible for pedestrian injuries or death so that all those responsible can be held fully accountable.
Why Should I Hire an Experienced Springfield Pedestrian Accident Attorney?
Hiring a knowledgeable pedestrian accident attorney can be the right choice for a variety of reasons, including:
- Personal injury lawyers know how to determine fault. Determining who is at fault in a pedestrian accident is not as straightforward as it may seem. Evidence can be scarce, making it difficult to determine who was negligent or at fault. While pedestrians have the right of way at all intersections, they also must act responsibly when crossing the road. Thus, it may be possible for a driver or insurance company to claim that a pedestrian was at fault. In situations such as these, having a tenacious lawyer who regularly deals with these situations can be critical to a case.
- Lawyers can aggressively pursue full compensation from insurance companies. Many victims attempt to negotiate with a driver’s insurance carrier without the assistance of an attorney. Unfortunately, this often is a mistake, as insurance companies are not interested in paying the full compensation deserved; instead, they work to pay the least amount possible. When a person accepts the first settlement offered, there is a high chance they will not receive the fair compensation their injury warrants. As personal injury attorneys with over nine decades of experience, we know how to deal with insurance companies and can help avoid low offers and assist in seeking the proper compensation to which you are entitled.
- Pedestrian accident attorneys know how to assess damages. While most accident victims understand that they may be entitled to collect money damages for medical and care costs, they often do not realize that can also pursue compensation for other losses, such as emotional trauma, pain and suffering, lost income and future earning potential, and loss of enjoyment of life. As accomplished injury lawyers, we can help calculate damages and protect you from unethical insurance adjusters who attempt to offer egregiously low settlements.
- Accident lawyers can ensure that timely lawsuits are filed. In Massachusetts, the statute of limitations for most personal injury cases is three years, meaning that you only have three years from the date of an injury to file a claim. If this deadline is not met, courts may refuse to hear a case.
Thus, while it might seem like a good idea to spend extra time trying to negotiate a settlement with a driver’s insurance company, the opportunity to file a lawsuit mustn’t be missed. We can help you set a schedule for your case that provides adequate negotiation time while ensuring that you do not miss your opportunity to seek full compensation in court.
- Personal injury attorneys can help determine if filing a lawsuit is the correct move. It can be challenging to decide whether to settle, hold out for a higher offer, or take a case to trial. As your attorneys, we can help you evaluate any settlement so that you can make an informed decision.
Call Our Experienced Springfield Pedestrian Accident Lawyers at (413) 781-0000 for a Free Consult Today!
Once we learn about your case, we can explain your options, as well as the types of compensation to which you may be entitled.
How Can We Help?
Please call us at 413.781.0000 or fill out this form.