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Running, walking the dog, and exploring local neighborhoods are just some of the ways that people enjoy the outdoors as pedestrians. However, pedestrians are vulnerable to cars and can get seriously hurt in an accident.

If a negligent driver injured you while you were walking or running, a Tacoma pedestrian accident lawyer could help you recover financial compensation. The monetary damages you receive from a negligence action could cover your medical costs, lost wages, and other losses you suffered. Additionally, you maximize the chances of collecting these repayments when you work with a dedicated injury attorney.

Negligence in Pedestrian Accident Cases

If a motor vehicle hits a pedestrian, negligence is almost certainly involved.

When someone is not as careful as a reasonable person would be in the same situation, they are considered to be legally negligent. Everyone has a duty to take reasonable steps to protect others from harm, and there are many ways that a motorist might fail to accomplish this.

For example, a driver might have been distracted, impaired, or inattentive. In other situations, a manufacturer’s negligence might result in a vehicle’s brakes, steering, or other components failing. Finally, poorly maintained roadways could cause a motorist to swerve and hit someone on foot.

Demonstrating this negligence is a crucial part of a case, and one of our legal team members could take the lead with this aspect. A Tacoma pedestrian accident attorney could review any relevant police reports, assess the accident scene, and speak with witnesses to prove this negligence in court.

What Laws Govern Pedestrian Conduct?

The state has enacted several laws that apply to pedestrians. For example, the Revised Code of Washington §46.61.250 requires pedestrians to travel facing oncoming traffic where there is no sidewalk. Other laws compel pedestrians to obey all traffic control devices and yield the right-of-way to vehicles if they cross a road outside of a marked intersection.

Meanwhile, taking some common-sense measures could also increase a pedestrian’s visibility and safety. For example, wearing bright colors in the daytime and reflective clothing after dusk helps drivers notice the presence of someone on foot. Headlamps and flashlights could provide additional protection. Further, pedestrians should avoid walking near a busy road while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Unfortunately, if a pedestrian was disobeying the law when the accident occurred, a defendant’s attorney would likely argue that they need to assume responsibility for the accident. They could make a similar assertion if the pedestrian was walking unpredictably while under the influence. State law makes every party to an accident responsible for the consequences of their actions, so a pedestrian who was partially at fault in an accident might collect reduced damages. This might seem intimidating for someone who knows they were walking carefully, but a pedestrian wreck attorney in Tacoma could fight to defend a plaintiff’s rights and ensure that they do not face unfair accusations of fault.

Sources of Financial Recovery After a Pedestrian Accident

When a vehicle is at-fault in a pedestrian accident, the driver’s insurance usually pays for the plaintiff’s medical expenses. If either the driver or the pedestrian has Personal Injury Protection (PIP), the pedestrian could turn to this system for valuable coverage. In more rare cases, a plaintiff might be able to turn to uninsured motorist coverage to acquire the damages they deserve.

Looking to insurance often provides a quick source of funds to cover immediate needs, but a severely injured pedestrian might need to file a civil claim to collect compensation for the full extent of their setbacks. For instance, a pedestrian accident claim, when filed with the assistance of a hardworking attorney, could offer reimbursement for:

  • Copayments, prescription costs, mental health treatment, and incidental expenses like parking and travel
  • Renovations to a home or adaptive devices on a vehicle to accommodate an injury
  • Future medical expenses
  • Lost income and diminished future earning potential
  • Pain, emotional trauma, disability, humiliation, disfigurement, reduced enjoyment of life, and the other subjective effects of an accident

Filing an injury lawsuit that accounts for all these losses can be challenging, but our Tacoma lawyers are here to help boost the impact of a pedestrian accident claim.

Call a Tacoma Pedestrian Accident Attorney About Your Case

Being hit by a car is traumatic, both physically and emotionally. If you were struck by a negligent driver, you deserve to recover without having to worry about legal processes or financial burdens.

Thankfully, a Tacoma pedestrian accident lawyer has the experience needed to anticipate your legal needs and proceed accordingly. Get help from a savvy legal professional by scheduling a consultation today.