Why Pedestrian Accident Victims Need a Houston Personal Injury LawyerBy Stewart J. Guss on August 12th, 2017
Pedestrian accidents caused by a driver’s negligence can result in serious injuries and damages. After such accidents, insurance companies will do everything in their power to try to limit their liability and exposure. In some cases, the insurance company may go so far as to deny liability altogether.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident that was caused by a driver’s negligence, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for the injuries, damages, pain, and inconvenience that you have suffered. Contact personal injury attorney Stewart J. Guss today to receive a free consultation about your pedestrian accident case.
In personal injury cases, Texas is a comparative negligence state. This means that an injured pedestrian can still recover damages, even if she partially contributed to the accident. Texas follows the 51% rule, meaning that if the plaintiff is found to be 51% or more at fault for the accident, she cannot recover any compensation. Otherwise, the injured plaintiff may recover damages, but the total recovery amount is offset by the plaintiff’s percentage of fault for the accident.
For example, if a jury found that an injured pedestrian was 25% responsible for his injuries and that the defendant driver was 75% responsible, the injured pedestrian can still recover compensation. Yet the pedestrian plaintiff’s compensation will be reduced by 25%—the percentage attributed to his own negligence.
In the context of pedestrian accidents, the defendant driver’s insurance company will attempt to show that the injured pedestrian was not paying attention, was breaking the law (e.g., crossing against the traffic signal, jaywalking, etc.), or was texting while walking.
Reducing a plaintiff’s potential damages
In cases where a pedestrian sustained serious injuries and where liability is clear, insurance companies will oftentimes seek to limit the amount of damages that the plaintiff pedestrian can recover. Specifically, the insurance company will look to other prior accidents, prior injuries, degenerative changes, and preexisting medical conditions to “explain away” the plaintiff’s current injuries.
For example, if a pedestrian was struck by a motor vehicle at a traffic intersection and sustained serious back injuries in the accident, the insurance company may subpoena all of the injured pedestrian’s prior medical records. If the pedestrian injured his back five years prior to the accident, then the insurance company will argue that this preexisting head injury was the sole or primary cause of the plaintiff’s complaints and injuries.
Contact a Houston pedestrian accident attorney today to discuss your case
The insurance company is not on your side in a pedestrian accident case. If it is determined that you have a case, Attorney Stewart J. Guss can meet the insurance company head-on and fight for your right to recover monetary compensation.
To schedule a free consultation with a Houston pedestrian accident attorney, please call us at 800-898-4877 or contact us online.