Getting The Help You Need

Questions To Answer When Suing A Pedestrian For A Car Accident

If you have hit a pedestrian with your car, you have the right to sue the pedestrian for damages if you are convinced they caused the accident; liability on your part isn't automatic. Just answer the following questions first before lodging such a claim:

Can You Prove the Pedestrian's Liability?

This is the first thing you should do because it determines your actions henceforth. Pedestrians do cause accidents; for example, a pedestrian can cause an accident by jaywalking, crossing the road while intoxicated, and crossing in a prohibited area, among other possibilities. It is just that, in many cases, the motorist is assumed to be responsible for a car-pedestrian crash. Therefore, you should be able to prove why the pedestrian should be held liable for the crash. This is something best handled by a car accident lawyer; consult one to help you with the assessment.

Do You Have Serious Damages?

Pursuing damages against a pedestrian can be costly and complicated, and it may only be worth it if you have serious damages. Pursuing such a lawsuit may not be worth it if the only damages you have is cracked glass or paint scratches. Having bodily injuries increases the value of potential damages and increases the chance that the case will be worth it.

Did You Contribute to the Accident?

Even if you have real damages and can prove the pedestrian's liability, you should evaluate your role in the crash and determine whether your actions could have contributed in any way. This is important because, depending on your state's accident laws, your contribution to the accident can reduce your damages or even rule them out. Note that there are many ways in which you can contribute to an accident even if the other party is the main liable party. For example, it may be that the pedestrian was crossing the road at an illegal place, but you couldn't stop in time because you were driving over the speed limit.

Can the Pedestrian Afford the Damages?

Lastly, you need to consider the pedestrian's ability to pay the damages. For example, it may be that the pedestrian doesn't have liability insurance that can cover your damages. In such a case, the only option left is to go after the pedestrian's personal property. If their personal property can't cover you either, then you may have no way of collecting your damages even if you win the case – rendering an injury lawsuit useless.

For information about whether it's worth making a claim, speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer