What You Should Know About Pedestrian Personal Injury Claims
According to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), an estimated 7,668 pedestrians died in 2019 from both traffic and non-traffic accidents. The following article will provide some helpful information for injured pedestrians who are considering filing a personal injury lawsuit against a liable driver.
What is the Florida statute of limitations on personal injury claims?
In order to preserve your right to sue for a pedestrian injury, you must ensure that you file a claim within the applicable statute of limitations. Florida Statute § 95.11(3)(a) requires that all personal injury/negligence claims in the state must be brought within 4 years of the date of the accident. This statute also specifically applies to any property damage resulting from the accident (for example, if you were hit by a car and broke your laptop as a result).
What kind of damages can an injured pedestrian sue for?
In pedestrian accidents, a driver may be held liable for the following types of damages:
- Medical expenses
- Funeral expenses (if the pedestrian passes away)
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disability or disfigurement
- Loss of consortium
What if a pedestrian is partly responsible for causing his own injuries?
Sometimes, pedestrians may be partly responsible for causing their own injuries (for example, by ignoring “don’t walk” signs or by jaywalking). Florida Statute § 768.81 states that all personal injury claims in Florida are based on the concept of comparative negligence. This means that if the court or a jury finds that your own actions contributed to any injury or damage you suffered, any damage award that you may be entitled to receive will be reduced to reflect that fact. For example, if a jury awards you $100,000 in damages but also finds that you were 50% to blame for the accident, your damages award will be reduced to $50,000.
When it comes to assigning fault, a Florida court will necessarily consider whether the pedestrian violated any of the state’s pedestrian laws. These laws state that pedestrians must obey any official traffic control device (traffic signs, signals, or pavement striping) unless otherwise directed by a police official. Additionally, if a sidewalk is readily available, pedestrians are not permitted to use the roadway. If sidewalks are not available or are under construction, however, pedestrians are required to use the shoulder on the left side of the roadway facing traffic.
When crossing the roadway, pedestrians are:
- Subject to traffic signals
- Not allowed to leave the curb until the traffic signal tells them to
- Not allowed to yield to right-of-way vehicles
- Required to keep to the right half of crosswalks
- Required to cross the roadway at a right angle or by the shortest route (except within a marked crosswalk)
- Only allowed to cross a roadway intersection diagonally unless authorized by an official traffic control device
- Not allowed to cross between two adjacent intersections (except when they are in a marked crosswalk)
Were You or a Loved One Recently Injured in a Pedestrian Accident? Contact Our Firm
If you or a loved one were recently injured in a pedestrian accident, The Musleh Law Firm wants to help. Our experienced Ocala personal injury attorneys will ensure that the liable party is held responsible so that you can obtain full compensation for your injuries.