Anne Arundel County, MD Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Anne Arundel County is a mix of suburban and urban areas, which often means many walkable streets where drivers and pedestrians have to share the space. Unfortunately for many pedestrians, car and truck drivers often fail to give you the space you are entitled to, resulting in serious car accidents.
If you were hit while walking on foot, contact our pedestrian accident lawyers right away. We can fight to file insurance claims and lawsuits on your behalf to get you the compensation you are entitled to. Never accept damages from an insurance company or try to pursue your case on your own without help from an attorney.
For a free review of your case, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras to speak with our pedestrian accident lawyers today. Call us at (410) 694-7291.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in Anne Arundel County, MD
Pedestrian accidents can happen in many different ways. More often than not, these accidents are caused by drivers failing to follow the rules of the road or failing to watch out for pedestrians. In some situations, pedestrians could be blamed for the accident, which can make it much harder to recover compensation under Maryland law. Our pedestrian accident lawyers give some examples of common ways that accidents can be blamed on the driver and the pedestrian.
A driver is often at fault for a pedestrian accident because there are so many laws that require them to yield to pedestrians. For example, drivers have to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks – and once one driver is stopped, other drivers in other lanes cannot continue onward until the pedestrian has cleared their half of the road.
Additionally, drivers must reduce speed in heavy pedestrian areas. Just because the driver is on the roadway and not the sidewalk does not give them the right to barrel down streets lined with pedestrians. Additionally, there are often special rules for school zones, crosswalks with crossing guards, and bus stops.
Drivers are also often responsible for crashes caused by a failure to watch out for pedestrians. If the driver was not on the lookout for people walking on the side of the road or on the sidewalk, then they might miss them entirely and cause an accident if they did not notice the pedestrians.
Lastly, many drivers cause crashes with pedestrians through other traffic violations like drunk driving, speeding, texting while driving, and more. These things are patently illegal whether you hit another driver or a pedestrian, but pedestrians often face far more severe injuries.
Drivers will often try to shift the blame to the pedestrian in the event of an accident. In some cases, the accident might very well be the pedestrian’s fault, especially if they were in the roadway without a crosswalk or tried to cross suddenly and quickly in front of a car. Pedestrians must also follow signs and signals, and if they get hit while failing to do so, the accident could be at least partially their fault.
If you are accused of being partially at fault for your own accident in Maryland, this could potentially block your case from moving forward. Maryland is one of a few states that uses a “pure contributory negligence” rule, which blocks victims from suing even if they were only 1 or 2% at fault for their own accident, let alone 50%. As such, it is vital to have a pedestrian accident lawyer on your side to redirect blame and prove that the driver’s fault superseded your own.
Suing for Damages in a Pedestrian Accident in Anne Arundel County, MD
Maryland law often allows either a lawsuit or an insurance claim for a pedestrian accident. If you were hit while walking, you could still be entitled to file an insurance claim against the driver who hit you. This could potentially pay damages quickly if the insurance company accepts your claim. However, insurance companies often deny fault and seek to drive down the cost of payouts, resulting in insurance settlements that do not cover your needs. Instead, a lawsuit might result in better compensation.
In a lawsuit, the jury decides damages instead of the insurance company. They can then order the defendant to pay the full value of your damages. This could potentially mean getting higher damages than the insurance company would be willing to pay through a claim.
If you do accept a settlement with the insurance company, that could function as a legal settlement for all claims. As such, you might not be able to go back to court and get additional damages, even if the insurance company underpaid you. Because of this, it is important that you do not sign anything or accept any payments from the at-fault driver or their insurance company until you speak with our pedestrian accident lawyers about your case.
Evidence to Prove Pedestrian Accident Claims in Anne Arundel County, MD
To prove your case, you will need multiple forms of evidence. First, you will likely need to testify as to what happened: what you saw, what the other driver did, and how the accident happened. Second, if there are other witnesses who can testify and back up your story, their testimony will also be vital. Third, any evidence you can collect at the scene – such as photos of the crash scene or video footage of the accident as it happened – will help prove what happened, too. Lastly, you will need evidence of your damages: medical bills, pay stubs, financial statements, and medical records and testimony from the doctors that treated you.
For help collecting or presenting any of this evidence, call our pedestrian accident attorneys right away.
Contact Our Pedestrian Accident Attorneys Today
For a free evaluation of your pedestrian accident and injury claim, call our Anne Arundel pedestrian accident lawyers at Rice, Murtha & Psoras today. You can reach us at (410) 694-7291.