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Clearwater’s vibrant nightlife features beach-side dance clubs and fun activities that invite people out to walk from venue to venue. By day, the year-round pleasant weather draws sun-seekers and shoppers to make their way along busy streets. Unfortunately, pedestrians in Clearwater are frequently in proximity to fast-moving vehicles that partying or distracted drivers sometimes operate.
If you or your child were injured in a pedestrian accident, a Clearwater pedestrian accident lawyer at Perenich Law Injury Attorneys can help you seek the compensation you deserve. Clearwater personal injury lawyer legal team prioritizes personal service and compassion while offering our clients the assistance they need with their claims.
As the population in warm-weather states such as Florida grows, pedestrian accidents increase. According to U.S. News & World Report, Florida saw nearly 5,900 pedestrian deaths in the last decade, making it far and away the most dangerous state to walk on public roadways. Alabama was the second-most dangerous state, with only 936 pedestrian deaths during that same time.
The danger to pedestrians involved more factors than simply the number of deaths. Other states—including Texas, with around 5,300 pedestrian deaths during those same years—had a higher number of deaths but lower risks when considering factors like population.
Contrary to popular belief, young children walking to school are not the most common victims of pedestrian accidents, though children are the most common victims to die as a result of their injuries. Their small size causes the impact point of a vehicle to rise their heads or chests, leading to more severe injuries than if the impact occurred lower on their bodies, as it usually does for adults.
According to available statistics:
In Clearwater, pedestrians must obey traffic laws, walk on sidewalks where available facing oncoming traffic, and cross roadways within crosswalks or at intersections. Motor vehicle drivers have responsibilities when it comes to pedestrians as well, including stopping for crosswalks or school buses that stop to pick up or drop off students who cross the road.
The most common cause of pedestrian accidents is negligence by the drivers involved.
Examples of negligence include:
The most severe injuries that result from pedestrian accidents are generally to the part of the pedestrian’s body that the vehicle directly hit. Initial vehicle impact-point injuries to are generally more severe than secondary impact injuries that occur when the pedestrian hits the vehicle’s windshield or the pavement after the vehicle strikes them.
The most common injuries incurred in Clearwater pedestrian accidents include:
In Clearwater, individuals whom pedestrian accidents injured can seek compensation for the expenses and impacts of their injury. This process usually involves the claimant—with the assistance of their attorney—first demanding the value of their pedestrian accident claim from the at-fault party’s insurance provider. If the insurance provider fails to pay that claim, the claimant can file the case in court or the claimant’s attorney can engage in settlement negotiations with the insurance adjuster.
A settlement is a resolution of the case outside of court. Usually, it involves a compromise where the claimant accepts less compensation than they originally demanded and the insurance company agrees to pay the claim immediately rather than fighting against the claim in court.
Your attorney will never decide for you whether to accept a settlement offer. They will, however, advise you about the pros and cons of each offer so that you can make an informed decision about whether to accept it. Once the settlement agreement is signed by both parties and approved by the court, you cannot ask for more money from the defendant.
If the other side refuses to make a fair settlement offer, the claimant may file a lawsuit in the appropriate court within four years of the pedestrian accident. The parties can continue settlement negotiations until the court decides the matter.
As previously noted, the driver of the motor vehicle that struck the pedestrian most often caused the accident.
To prove that a negligent driver was responsible for the injuries you incurred in a Clearwater pedestrian accident, you must show:
Recovering damages refers to seeking compensation for the expenses and impacts your injury caused you.
Examples of the expenses and impacts pedestrians seek compensation for include:
If the victim dies in a Clearwater pedestrian accident that someone else’s carelessness or recklessness caused, family members of the deceased can seek compensation for the financial and psychological losses they incurred from the death through a wrongful death claim.
They can seek compensation for losses such as:
Because children are not old enough to make legal decisions, they cannot file a personal injury lawsuit. However, their parents or legal guardians can file the claim on the child’s behalf to seek compensation for past and future medical expenses related to the injuries they sustained in an accident.
The parents or guardians must file this claim within four years of the accident. Florida law extends the statute of limitations in cases involving minors who do not have a permanent parent or guardian or whose parents have interests adverse to the child. Minor children have up to seven years to file the claim on their own.
Pedestrian accident injuries can cause you permanent disabilities, a long recovery time, and extraordinary financial and emotional impacts. Let Perenich Law Injury Attorneys listen to your story and describe how our legal team can seek compensation for your claim. For your free case evaluation, call us at (727) 669-2828 or contact us online.