The number of pedestrian injuries and deaths has continued to rise for several years. Unfortunately, it’s a real risk that both pedestrians and drivers need to be aware of.
In the event that you do find yourself with a pedestrian accident case, it’s important to know what to do. Winning your case is crucial. It’s the difference between getting the compensation or covering the bills yourself. These cases can have huge negative impacts on your life if not handled right.
Read on to learn all of the mistakes with pedestrian accident claims you’ll want to avoid!
1. Failing to Call the Authorities
Too many people are worried about what will happen when they call the police after an accident. It’s a big mistake to leave them out. As soon as you are able, it’s important to alert them about what has happened.
When the authorities first get to the scene, they’ll check the situation and look for injuries. If there are any severe problems, they’ll call for backup from an ambulance or the fire department. They’re trained to know what needs to happen to keep everyone as safe as possible.
Next, they’ll get traffic moving again if it’s stopped. This is important to avoid further accidents.
The police also play a crucial role in documenting the scene. They will make an official report of what happened. That includes pictures or measurements if necessary. It’s helpful to have a third party documenting for accuracy.
2. Gathering Insufficient Pictures
It’s one thing to be able to describe the scene of the accident to your lawyer or the judge. It’s completely another thing to be able to actually show them. Pictures are the best way to paint a truly accurate representation. Too many people fail to get a sufficient amount of photos following the crash.
Regardless of the specifics, it’s always key to get a photo of the vehicle involved. Try to get as many angles as possible to show the whole thing.
Then make sure you get pictures of the surrounding area, any injuries, and anyone involved. You can continue to take photos of your healing process as well. The more pictures you can have, the better off you’ll be. It’s better to have too many to choose from than not have enough.
3. Forgetting to Get Witness Statements
Immediately after an accident, it’s hard to imagine a time when you won’t remember every detail. Or that those who also saw the crash will forget a moment.
But, most likely, some of those finer details will start to fade as time goes on.
This is why it’s so important to gather witness statements as soon as you can following the accident. Obviously, be sure everyone is safe first. Then you can go about getting everyone’s view either in a written and signed statement or with video.
The more witnesses you can gather, the fuller your picture will be. When you combine all of their information together it’s easier to understand. Then the judge can assign fault quickly based on the facts.
Don’t forget to write down your own statement about what happened as well!
4. Declining Medical Attention
Obviously, one of the biggest problems with getting in an accident is the injuries. But too many people put off or decline medical attention altogether. They think using their first aid kit will be enough. Generally, that’s not the case!
This is not a good idea first of all for your safety. A pedestrian accident injury could be as simple as a couple of bruises. On the other hand, it could be as serious as a concussion or internal bleeding. It’s always necessary to get a check-up, even if you have no visible injuries.
Seeing a doctor is also an important aspect of documenting your claim as well. These visits will be an official record of your injuries and the treatments you received. This is crucial to arguing your case and getting compensation.
5. Not Organizing Documentation and Evidence
When it comes to the claim filing process, there is a lot of documentation involved. One of the worst things you can do is fail to create a system for organizing everything. Taking just a couple of extra minutes at the beginning of your claim to set up a system will save you hours in the future.
Everyone has different organizational ideas but the key is to set a central location. This can be a file, drawer, or spot on your counter. It doesn’t matter as long as you know where it is and everything ends up in that place.
It can also be helpful to get a checklist of documents you’ll need from your lawyer. Then you can keep track as you go and gather whatever else you need.
The more organized you can be throughout the process, the less stress you’ll have.
6. Trying to Handle the Claim on Your Own
The biggest mistake people make is to try to handle their pedestrian accident cases on their own. While it is possible, most people don’t have the knowledge needed to be successful.
Filing any kind of claim in court requires a lot of precision. The right paperwork has to be filled out in the right order and by the set deadlines. Any missteps, like missing the claim filing deadline, and your case can be thrown out. Trying to handle all the details is really the last thing you need to worry about after an accident.
Instead, it’s just better to find a local car accident lawyer who can handle it all for you. They will not only manage the basics but help you present your case in the most compelling way. These professionals increase your chances of receiving the compensation you’re seeking.
7. Accepting the First Settlement Deal
Occasionally, the case you present will lead you to a settlement deal. This can be great news! Or it can be a way for the other side to pay you less than necessary. It’s important to not just accept the offer right away.
Considering a settlement deal is another reason it’s so important to work with a lawyer. They’ll help you decide if it’s a good deal or not.
If it’s decided that you shouldn’t take the deal, the lawyer can help you come up with a counter. This is the best way to get exactly what you think you deserve. Having that kind of expert advice makes going through this process so much easier.
It’s tempting to take the first option given to you so the whole thing can end. But it’s much better to take a minute to decide what’s worth it or not.
8. Talking Too Quickly
In the moments following the accident, you’ll want to keep a level head if possible. It’s a good idea to stay quiet at first and only answer direct, necessary questions.
The problem with talking to everyone on-site is that you can say something you may regret later. For example, many people will feel the need to appease the other side and may admit to some guilt. Especially if there are angry feelings involved.
Instead, focus on making sure everyone is safe and getting the help they need. Then give a straight-forward, fact-based report only to the authorities.
Sometimes, the insurance company for the other side may contact you and ask for a statement. In these cases, it’s best to confer with your lawyer for the best way forward.
9. Waiting Too Long to File the Claim
After you’ve been in an accident, there is so much going on. Especially if it’s a pedestrian accident and there are injuries. It can become all-consuming to try to manage everything. These feelings often delay your filing your pedestrian accident claim documents.
This is a huge mistake and should be avoided at all costs!
The best thing you can do is move forward with your claim as soon as you know you have one. Everything is better when done quickly. It’s easier to gather documentation and everyone’s memory is fresher. And, not to mention, the quicker you file, the quicker you’ll receive the compensation!
Working quickly and efficiently will help you move on and put the whole event behind you!
Mistakes with Pedestrian Accident Claims You Should Avoid
No one ever wants to be involved in any kind of accident. Especially not one involving a pedestrian. But it’s important to know what to do in case you ever find yourself in that situation.
Understanding the common mistakes with pedestrian accident claims is a huge boost. It’ll help you create a strong case with your lawyer so you can get the compensation you need. You can feel more confident knowing you did everything to present a quality case.
Our team has helped countless people with the claim filing process. If you’re in need of assistance with a court case, contact us today!