Fort Lauderdale Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

Walking in Fort Lauderdale, with its lovely weather and scenic spots, should be a pleasant experience. However, there’s a growing concern about pedestrian accidents, introducing a risk factor to walks in this beautiful area.

When faced with the aftermath of a pedestrian accident in Fort Lauderdale, you don’t have to navigate the legal process alone. At Cowen Edwards, our team of dedicated Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyers understands the profound impact of such incidents. With a proven track record in handling pedestrian accident claims, we stand ready to guide you through the legal process, explain your options, and support you on the path to recovery. Contact us today for a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you.

Legal Rights as a Pedestrian in Fort Lauderdale

Most people are aware that pedestrians have the right of way in Fort Lauderdale and other places, especially if they’re using a crosswalk and following road signs. And while there’s plenty of mechanisms in place to protect you from accidents, they still are fairly common throughout the city. This, obviously, raises a lot of issues. First and foremost, pedestrians are extremely vulnerable to injuries when they are in an accident, since they have virtually no protection against a moving vehicle. From there, it means various expenses and other damages that you’ll have to deal with.

In response, Florida law provides you with the legal right to file an injury claim. However, there’s a few pieces of information you’ll need first.

Liability

The starting point of any claim is figuring out liability–or who is legally responsible for the accident and covering your injuries. Determining liability in a Fort Lauderdale pedestrian accident can be challenging, but generally, the driver is often considered at fault due to their responsibility to yield to pedestrians, especially at intersections and crosswalks—common accident locations.

To file an injury claim and receive compensation, proving fault is crucial, demonstrating that the driver acted negligently and caused the accident. This involves establishing:

  • Duty of care – The driver should have tried to avoid causing an accident or harm.
  • Breach of duty – The driver acted carelessly, failing to meet their duty.
  • Causation – The accident occurred because the driver neglected their duty.
  • Damages – Injuries resulted from the driver’s actions.

While this will generally show negligence and fault, other parties may be liable based on specific accident circumstances, like:

  • Other pedestrians
  • Local government agencies responsible for road or sign malfunctions
  • Vehicle or part manufacturers

In addition, you being at fault as a pedestrian can happen, although it’s uncommon. Examples include:

  • Crossing the street in the wrong place
  • Not obeying traffic lights or signs
  • Suddenly entering the street
  • Crossing under the influence of alcohol or drugs

Even if you share some fault, you can still seek compensation under Florida’s “comparative negligence” law. However, your compensation will be reduced based on your percentage of fault. If you bear significant responsibility for the accident, your compensation will be reduced by the same percentage.

Damages

Pedestrian accident cases differ, and the outcome depends on specific details. It’s important to note that there’s no guarantee of a positive outcome in any legal proceeding. Yet, partnering with our team of skilled lawyers can greatly improve your case. After a pedestrian accident, you may qualify to recover the following:

  • Medical expenses and bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of enjoyment of life or companionship
  • Wrongful death expenses

Not all these damages apply to every case. Our experienced personal injury lawyers can help you understand the specifics of your situation and potential applicable damages. In Florida, as with any injury claim, there’s a two-year window from the accident date to file your claim. Pedestrian accidents often have lasting emotional impacts, and our team will make sure you get fair compensation for all your damages, even beyond physical healing.

Do You Need a Lawyer After a Fort Lauderdale Pedestrian Accident?

The short answer here is no, there’s no law that says you have to have a lawyer represent you in an injury claim after a Fort Lauderdale pedestrian accident. However, working with our team can make the process much easier on you and your family. Going it alone means not only do you have to deal with physical recovery, but also negotiating and dealing with an insurance company to get much-needed financial support for your injuries. That alone can be overwhelming. So, working with our team will provide you with the following:

  • Negotiating – Our lawyers are experienced in dealing with insurance companies. They know the common tricks used by insurance adjusters, allowing them to negotiate effectively and increase your chances of getting a fair settlement.

  • Legal guidance – Insurance companies often aim to pay as little as possible for claims. Our lawyers understand personal injury laws, determining the true value of your claim. They consider all the ways the accident has impacted you, gathering strong evidence to support your case. This approach helps us fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.

  • Protecting your rights – Insurance companies have their own team to safeguard their interests. With our personal injury lawyers on your side, your rights and interests are protected too. Your lawyer advocates for you, handling any unfair tactics from the insurance company, and works diligently to secure a fair and just settlement.

  • Easing your burden – Dealing with insurance negotiations can be stressful, especially when recovering from an injury. Our lawyers handle all the communication, paperwork, and legal tasks for you, alleviating the stress and allowing you to focus on your recovery.

What Actions to Take After a Pedestrian Accident

Even though working with our team is crucial to your overall recovery, your actions in the immediate aftermath of the accident is also very important to your claim. Thus, you should make sure to do the following:

  • Take care of your health – Prioritize your well-being. Even if injuries seem minor, consult a doctor as some may not be immediately apparent.

  • Report the accident – Call local police to the scene for an accident report, which is valuable for the claims process.

  • Get information – Obtain contact and insurance details from the involved driver, and provide your information.

  • Talk to witnesses – Collect contact details from witnesses; their statements can be crucial in verifying what happened.

  • Photos and videos – Use your phone or camera to document the accident scene, including vehicle damage, injuries, and relevant road conditions.

  • Report to your insurance company – Regardless of fault, inform your insurer to keep them in the loop.

  • Preserve any evidence – Keep records of medical treatment, bills, and other accident-related expenses for your case.

  • Follow medical advice – Stick to your healthcare provider’s instructions for recovery, demonstrating proactive steps for healing.

  • Be careful when talking to insurance companies – Refrain from discussing the accident except with your attorney or authorities. Avoid admitting fault or making statements to the insurance company without legal advice.

  • Document the accident’s impact on you – Keep records of how the accident has affected your life, including missed work, emotional distress, or changes in daily activities.

Remember, each pedestrian accident case is unique, and necessary steps may vary. Consulting with our experienced Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyers can provide tailored guidance for your specific situation.

Contact Cowen Edwards For a Free Consultation

Being in any accident in Fort Lauderdale is challenging, but even more so if you’re a pedestrian. Facing the injuries and damage of these accidents alone is simply too much for most people. At Cowen Edwards, our team will be there to help you. If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian accident in Fort Lauderdale, contact us for a free consultation. We’ll explain your options and give you the support you need.