Do I Need To File A Lawsuit If Hit As A Pedestrian And Injured By A Car In Georgia?
In the state of Georgia, pedestrians being hit and injured by cars is an unfortunately common occurrence. In fact, in 2015 the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety reported that over 130 pedestrians were killed as the result of a car accident.
If you were hit and injured by a car as a pedestrian, you may not know whether you can, or should, file a lawsuit to recoup expenses related to your injuries. The easy answer is that you probably should, though every case is unique to the individuals involved.
Discussing your case with a personal injury lawyer can help you decide whether your situation warrants the filing of a lawsuit. You need the lawyers at Prieto, Marigliano, Holbert & Prieto, LLC on your side to help you get the maximum compensation for your pain and suffering.
How To Get Compensation For Your Injuries
If you were hit by a car as a pedestrian, you can seek compensation for your injuries in one of two ways:
- You can file an insurance claim against the other driver and negotiate a settlement through his or her insurance company; or
- You can sue the other driver.
In either case, the law does not require you to hire a lawyer to represent you – but it is strongly encouraged. This is because, more than likely, the other driver will hire a lawyer to represent him, leaving you outnumbered and outgunned. This may be all the motivation you need to hire a lawyer as well – fight fire with fire.
No matter whether you pursue a settlement through the insurance company or file a lawsuit against the driver, you need to be able to show who is at fault for the accident. When a pedestrian is hurt in an accident involving a motor vehicle, the driver of that vehicle is typically at fault. However, a pedestrian can also share the blame in certain circumstances.
A driver in the state of Georgia is obligated by law to drive safely. For example, if a person is speeding or texting while driving, the law considers that driver to be negligent. As such, any pedestrian struck by a driver while acting in a negligent manner may also be held liable to pay for the injuries caused by his or her negligence.
For instance, if a pedestrian is texting while walking or jogging, this can lead a court to find the pedestrian at fault for the accident. Likewise, if the pedestrian is under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, this too can lead to a finding of negligence on the pedestrian’s behalf.
How Negligence Affects Compensation
The state of Georgia does not take a black-and-white stance on negligence when determining fault in an accident. Instead, Georgia has what is called a “modified comparative negligence standard.” Under this standard, each party to the accident may share some of the blame.
Juries in personal injury lawsuits determine how much responsibility each party has for the accident. This share of the blame is determined as a percentage. Even for pedestrians who were struck by a car, no one can receive compensation for their injuries if the jury finds them to be more than 50 percent responsible for the accident.
This “percentage of blame” affects how much compensation you can receive. If a jury finds that your injuries warrant a payout of $50,000, you will only receive the full amount if they also find the driver to be completely at fault for the accident. If, however, they determine you to be, say, 20 percent liable for the accident, your final payment would be $10,000 less than it would have been otherwise.
If You Were Hit As A Pedestrian In A Car Accident, Call Us!
If you were struck by a car while walking or jogging in the state of Georgia, you may be able to sue for compensation for your injuries. In addition to being reimbursed for your medical bills, you may also file a claim for lost wages if you missed work, as well as the pain and suffering that comes from being hit by a car.
Filing a claim with another driver’s insurance company or filing a lawsuit can be a daunting process, especially if you are recovering from a serious injury. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. Here at Prieto, Marigliano, Holbert & Prieto, LLC, we can do as much – or as little – as you need us to do to help you file your claim before it is too late.
Call us at (855) 329-7144 or enter your information into the contact form on the right, and one of our experienced lawyers will reach out to you to discuss your case for absolutely no charge. Better still, you are under no pressure to retain, so if you do not like what we have to say, you can just hang up and walk away.
A settlement cannot take away your pain, but it can reduce your suffering – and we can help you get the fairest settlement possible for your case. Call us now!