Articles Tagged with pedestrian injuries

School Zone - Pedestrian AccidentIn Florida and other states during the school year, there is a common danger in and around schools.  Student pedestrians who walk to school or who are walking near a school are at risk for being hit, injured, and even killed.  Disturbingly, student pedestrians are hit far too often while doing someone we, as parents, encourage them to do – attend school.   It should be noted the Florida is a Comparative Fault state.  In other words, the negligence or fault for the incident does not have to fall 100 % on any particular person or party in order to pursue a case or claim on behalf of the injured student.  When a student / child is hit and suffers injuries or dies as a result of the incident, there can be a cause of action or case pursued on behalf of the injured child.  
When a child suffers a serious personal injury or dies as a result of the incident, there is a full incident report / police report completed as to the cause and preventability of the incident, injuries, and / or death.  It should also be noted that the conclusions of the investigating officer is not binding on a civil case or claim.  While it is helpful to the pursuit of the case or claim if the police officer cites the driver for the cause and fault of the pedestrian incident, such a finding or citation is not necessary to pursue a case or claim on behalf of the injured child or on behalf of the surviving parents of the child who tragically dies as a result of a pedestrian accident or incident.
Florida has laws in place for drivers and pedestrians alike as to the use of crosswalks, schools zones, speed limits, etc . . . Here is a link to read Section 316.130, Florida Statutes – Pedestrians and Traffic Regulations has the applicable rules and regulations for crosswalks.

Pedestrian Crossing Sign - Child SafetyWhen a child or adult is injured as a result of a Florida Automobile Accident, there are many challenges presented including but not limited to the payment of medical bills.   Let’s say that a child or an adult is walking across the street and then is hit by a driver who was not paying attention.  The injured pedestrian suffered a fractured leg and other injuries.  The driver was 100 % at fault for the crash as a result of looking down at a text message as the driver approached a red light.  Under this fact scenario, one would assume that the at-fault driver would be liable or on the hook for all of the medical bills and related damages.  Under Florida law, this is not the case if the injured pedestrian owned a vehicle OR if the injured pedestrian resided with a relative who owned a vehicle.  PIP (Personal Injury Protection) under a Florida Automobile Insurance Policy may end up covering the medical bills for the injured pedestrian.

Let’s bring up a few more facts to illustrate how this works. Let’s say that the injured pedestrian is a twelve year old boy named Johnny who resides with his mother Mary Jones.  At the time of the pedestrian accident, Mary Jones owned a vehicle that was insured with GEICO Insurance.  The at-fault driver was insured through State Farm Insurance.  Even though the vehicle of Mary Jones was no where near the crash site where the pedestrian was injured, GEICO – the insurance company for Mary Jones – will most likely pay the medical bills of Johnny Jones, the twelve year old injured pedestrian.  Under some circumstances, a pedestrian can qualify for PIP coverage for the at-fault driver IF AND ONLY IF the injured pedestrian did not own a vehicle AND if the injured pedestrian did not resident with a resident relative who owned a vehicle and had insurance on the vehicle.

Certainly, there are a host of challenges in the aftermath of a pedestrian accident when a child or adult suffered personal injuries. The payment or responsibility for the payment of the medical bills is just one piece of a complicated puzzle.  It is important for the injury victim and the family to retain the services of a Florida Personal Injury Attorney to get guidance, advice, and, yes, legal representation to get through these tough and confusing issues.

Vehicle - Large SUV OrangeHit and run accidents are unfortunately part of every community. There are drivers who carelessly cause accidents and injuries to pedestrians, bicyclists, and occupants of other vehicles and then simply flee the scene.  Some are caught in the act or thereafter. Others are never located.  For those who are located, there can be both criminal and civil law consequences to these actions.   For many of these hit and run accidents, the at-fault driver lacks insurance OR lacks good insurance to cover the accident related personal injuries, bills, and damages.  If there is no insurance or just minimal insurance, there are other sources of compensation to accident / injury victims in the State of Florida as follows:
Victim of Crimes Compensation Fund.  An injury victim can claim up to $10,000 through a fund set up through the State of Florida. The process can be started through the local sheriff’s office or the local state attorney’s office. 
PIP (Personal Injury Protection).   The injury victim can utilize available PIP benefits under a vehicle owned by the victim or owned by a resident relative of a victim.   If a parent has an automobile insurance policy, the medical bills for the injured child can be processed under the parents’ PIP insurance policy even if the child was injured as  pedestrian or a bicyclist.