Did you get injured while walking and have questions about life after a pedestrian accident? Contact our Salt Lake City lawyer to get started.
Because pedestrians are so vulnerable to serious injuries from a car crash, the law gives them right of way in a lot of cases. As in any case, if the driver of a car bears more than 50% of the fault, that driver can be sued or held liable.
If the driver owns the car, that car’s insurance policy will protect the driver from any claims or lawsuits. If the driver is not the owner of the car, we’ll go after the car’s policy first, then we can go after the driver’s personal auto policy. If those options don’t give enough coverage, then we can also look to see if the person that was hit—the pedestrian—has their own insurance policy available to them.
Under your own insurance policy, if your injuries are more than the total amount of the defendant’s liability policy, we can pursue what’s called an underinsured motorist claim against your own insurance company. That can happen by arbitrating, negotiating, or even through a regular lawsuit.
Accepting the First Settlement Offer
Insurance companies are in the business of keeping their money. Most huge businesses that use research and big data approach you in ways designed to tilt the odds in their favor. One of the really insidious things insurance companies do is to make you a cash offer for your Utah pedestrian crash as soon as possible after the injury.
They know you’re scared. They know you’re out of work. They know you’re worried about money. That offer of money in your pocket right now seems so nice. But please don’t be fooled.
I have potential clients that ask all the time, “Should I accept the insurance company’s first offer if I’m seriously injured as a pedestrian when I get hit by a car?”
The answer is no. We deal with insurance companies every day, all day. It’s all we do. It’s almost never ever a good idea to accept that offer.
There are too many unknowns when they make that offer; they know that. They want you to sign away your case before we get all the facts, before we know all the injuries, before we know what the insurance coverages are.
One of the things that we see in Utah pedestrian accidents when someone gets hit by a car or a truck while walking down the road or crossing a street, is that the injuries are often really devastating. When thousands of pounds of steel, glass, and plastic collide with a human body unprotected by airbags or seatbelts, the pedestrian always loses. The lack of protection for a pedestrian in these accidents almost always makes their injuries much, much worse than injuries in other accidents.
Damages in pedestrian accident cases not only depend on the nature of the injuries but on establishing fault for the accident. The more at-fault the driver of the car, the bigger the potential result. Pedestrians really are defenseless against automobiles.
Did you or your loved one get seriously injured while walking and have questions about life after a pedestrian accident? Contact experienced Salt Lake City pedestrian accident lawyer Brad DeBry for a free consultation.