Largo Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Vehicle speed is a critical factor in all vehicle collision claims. Speed is even more important in pedestrian accident claims. At impact speeds below 25mph, the pedestrian death rate is less than 10 percent. The fatality rate skyrockets to over 90 percent if the impact speed is above 55mph. Since most pedestrian accidents happen outside marked crosswalks, the tortfeasor (negligent driver) is usually traveling at or near top speed at the moment of impact.
Even if the pedestrian was jaywalking, compensation is usually still available. The claim is simply more complex, because defenses like comparative fault and sudden emergency come into play. Comparative fault essentially shifts blame for the accident from the tortfeasor to the victim. Basically, the insurance company lawyer argues that the victim didn’t watch where s/he was going. Sudden emergency torpedoes damage claims. This doctrine could apply if the tortfeasor reasonably reacted to a sudden emergency, such as a pedestrian “darting out into traffic.”
The hard-working Largo pedestrian accident attorneys at The Reep Law Firm understand that additional effort on the front end usually produces better results on the back end. Generally, students who do their homework do well on their tests. This additional effort includes a thorough case review and diligent evidence collection. The better result usually means maximum compensation for your serious injuries.
Essentially, negligence is a lack of care. In Florida, a negligence claim has four basic components:
- Duty: Most noncommercial drivers have a duty of reasonable care in the Sunshine State. They must drive defensively and avoid accidents whenever possible. Most commercial operators have a duty of utmost care. They must go above and beyond in their efforts to avoid accidents.
- Breach: A breach of duty is a lack of reasonable or utmost care. Not every driving mistake is a lack of care. Speeding 5mph above the limit probably isn’t serious enough to be a breach of care. Speeding 25mph over the limit is a lot different, especially if the tortfeasor is an Uber driver or other commercial operator.
- Cause: A Largo pedestrian accident attorney must establish legal cause and factual cause. Legal cause is foreseeability (possibility) of injury. If Sam hits Alice and Alice’s doctor makes a medical mistake, the medical error isn’t a foreseeable injury, as far as Sam is concerned. Factual cause is substantial cause. For example, the weather may contribute to a crash, but the weather almost never causes a crash.
- Damages: Usually, the victim/plaintiff must sustain a tangible injury. There’s a difference between a tangible and a visible injury. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder isn’t a visible injury, but it is a tangible injury. This area is complex in Florida, since the Sunshine State has a no-fault insurance law.
A negligence claim could also be based on a violation of a safety law. In Florida, tortfeasors are presumptively liable for damages if they violate safety laws, like the speed limit law, and cause wrecks.
Resolving Your Claim for Damages
Over 90 percent of civil claims settle out of court. These resolutions greatly benefit victim/plaintiffs. They give the parties more control over the outcome and end the case earlier, so victims receive their compensation sooner. Moreover, since an attorney is a good negotiator as well as a good litigator, attorneys know when to stand firm and when to compromise.
The compensation in a personal injury claim usually includes money for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.
Connect With a Hard-Hitting Pinellas County Attorney
Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced pedestrian accident attorney in Largo, contact Reep, Coleman & Stubbendorff. After hours, virtual, home, and hospital visits are available.