In a recent three-year period, 1,695 pedestrians were killed in collisions. Many thousands more innocent pedestrians suffered severe injuries in accidents that could and should have been avoided.
At The Seerden Law Firm, PLLC, our Houston pedestrian accident lawyers is a committed advocate for injured victims. Andrew Seerden has been certified as a personal injury law specialist by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.
Prior to founding his law firm, Mr. Seerden worked as counsel representing large corporations and big insurance companies. He knows the “other side” of the personal injury claims process. Using his skills and legal experience, Mr. Seerden fights aggressively for the rights and interests of injured victims.
If you were hurt in a pedestrian accident in Texas, please contact our law firm now for a free, no obligation case evaluation.
How our Houston Pedestrian Accident Attorneys Can Help With Your Case
Pedestrian accident claims are often complex. Following a serious pedestrian collision, you should seek help from a qualified personal injury lawyer. Andrew Seerden is a Texas board certified personal injury attorney with extensive experience handling pedestrian accident claims in and around Houston.
He is committed to providing each and every client with the fully personalized, highly sophisticated legal representation that the biggest law firms offer to their wealthiest corporate clients. If you or your family member was hurt in a pedestrian crash in Southeastern Texas, Mr. Seerden is prepared to:
- Conduct a free, comprehensive review of your personal injury case
- Explain your rights to you and answer your questions
- Help you understand and explore all available legal options for compensation
- Investigate your accident to build a strong claim
- Work with doctors to review your medical records and get a complete picture of your injuries
- Negotiate with the insurance company for a full settlement
- Prepare to file and pursue a personal injury lawsuit in court
Most pedestrian accident claims are settled out of court. In fact, as many as 95 percent of all personal injury cases are resolved through a settlement. Injured victims need to make sure that they have a trial-tested lawyer on their team while pursuing settlement negotiations. If the defendant or their insurance company does not offer you fair compensation, Andrew Seerden will be ready to bring your case in court.
Identifying Sources of Compensation in a Pedestrian Crash
If you were injured in a pedestrian accident, it is crucial that you are able to identify every available source of financial compensation. Texas is a comparative fault state. This could have important implications for your legal claim. First and foremost, it means that multiple parties can potentially share legally liability for the same accident.
Liability is based on negligence. In the most straightforward terms, negligence is the failure to take due care in a particular situation.
As an example, a driver who is texting on a cell phone and then collides with a pedestrian in a crosswalk is negligent. Similarly, a driver who blows through a red light and strikes an innocent pedestrian is negligent. All negligent parties who caused the accident should be held responsible.
Most auto accidents — including pedestrian accidents — are caused by driver errors. In fact, as many as 95 percent of all motor vehicle collisions are linked to driver mistakes. The most likely source of compensation for an injured pedestrian is through the insurance company of the driver or drivers who are at fault for the accident.
In some Houston pedestrian accident cases, there may be other sources of compensation available to injured victims. In some cases, injured pedestrians may be able to make a claim with their own auto insurance, usually under uninsured motorist (UM) or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. This type of claim may be required if you were struck by a hit-and-run motorist or a negligent driver who lacks sufficient insurance coverage.
In other cases, a commercial entity may bear responsibility. For example, if you are struck by a commercial vehicle — including by an Uber or a Lyft — you may have a claim against a commercial insurance policy. Finally, in some less common cases, pedestrians may have legal claims against road designers, construction companies, or even state highway entities. If a negligent road hazard contributed to a pedestrian’s injuries, this type of legal claim should be explored.
Types of Compensation Available for Injured Pedestrians
Injured pedestrians may be eligible to recover financial compensation for the full value of their financial losses and for their intangible damages. Since Texas is a fault-based auto accident state, an injured pedestrian must establish liability to recover financial compensation through a personal injury claim. Proving liability is not enough. You must also prove the extent of your losses.
The big insurance companies are notoriously aggressive. If they cannot deny liability, they tend to focus their tactics on reducing the total value of a settlement. Houston pedestrian accident lawyer Andrew Seerden — who worked as an insurance company defense attorney before founding his own law firm to advocate for the rights of injured victims — has a deep understanding of how insurance companies operate. He knows how to help his clients maximize their personal injury settlement or verdict.
Depending on the nature of your pedestrian accident case, you may be able to recover damages for:
- Emergency medical costs
- All other related medical expenses
- Physical rehabilitation
- Loss of wages
- Diminished ability to earn a living
- Pain and suffering
- Mental distress
- Permanent impairment
- Loss of quality of life
- Wrongful death damages
- Other related losses
Legal Options After a Hit-and-Run Pedestrian Accident
Under Texas law, drivers have a legal duty to stop and remain at the scene of a pedestrian collision. Fleeing the scene — a hit-and-run — is a direct violation for the Texas Transportation Code. It is a criminal act that can be charged as a felony offense under certain circumstances. Despite the laws, pedestrian hit-and-run accidents still occur.
If you were injured in a pedestrian hit-and-run accident, you may be confused over what exactly you can do to protect your rights. First, you should consult with a Houston pedestrian accident lawyer. Your lawyer can explore every available legal option for recovering compensation.
In some cases, the hit-and-run driver can be tracked down. There may be photographs or videos of the vehicle, or a witness may have caught a license plate number. Your lawyer can help launch an independent investigation to identify the driver.
In many cases, the hit-and-run driver is never found. Fortunately, victims of pedestrian hit-and-run accidents may have other potential legal options available. In Texas, pedestrians injured in hit-and-run accidents may be eligible to bring an uninsured motorist (UM) claim under their own auto policy. This coverage may also extend to the policyholder’s children and others in the household.
What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Pedestrian Accident
If you were injured in a pedestrian crash, it is crucial that you take steps to protect your well-being and your legal rights. In the immediate aftermath of a pedestrian crash, it is entirely normal to be confused and overwhelmed by the situation. Getting struck by a vehicle is incredibly traumatic, especially if you suffered a significant injury in the collision.
Our Houston pedestrian collision lawyer recommends that you do the following four things after an accident:
- See a Doctor. Many pedestrian accidents result in severe, even catastrophic injuries. Your health must always come first. If you need emergency attention, you should take an ambulance ride to the nearest medical center. In cases where injuries are less severe, the victim still needs to see a physician as soon as possible. Some serious conditions may not be apparent at first, and the chaos of a crash can mask symptoms. A thorough exam can uncover hidden conditions and allow for potentially lifesaving treatment.
- Report the Accident to Law Enforcement. All accidents that result in injuries should be reported to the authorities. Your accident may be reported to the Texas State Police, the Houston Police Department, or another local law enforcement agency. As an injured pedestrian, you need to make sure the crash is reported. This can help you get justice.
- Gather Accident Evidence. If you are able, gather any evidence that you can at the scene. Take a picture of the crash site, get the name and vehicle details for the at-fault driver, and try to get contact information for any person who witnessed the accident. If you are unable to do this yourself, ask someone on scene to do it for you.
- Get Help From a Houston Personal Injury Lawyer. Most pedestrian accident cases are defended by large insurance providers. You do not want to go up against a big insurance company alone. The best thing you can do to protect your rights is to get an experienced Houston pedestrian injury lawyer by your side as soon as possible after the collision.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in Texas
Pedestrian collisions occur in a number of different ways. A pedestrian crash can happen at any time, and at any location. Both drivers and pedestrians should always remain vigilant.
Many pedestrian accidents share some common characteristics. In most cases, they are the fault of a negligent driver who failed to recognize the pedestrian. Many pedestrian crashes occur at similar times or in similar circumstances.
The four biggest risk factors for pedestrian accidents are as follows:
- Reduced Visibility. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 7 in 10 pedestrian collisions happen at night. This is an especially striking figure as far fewer pedestrians are out at night. Your risk of being injured or killed as a pedestrian rises by as much as 10 times when it’s dark out.
- Distracted Driving. Many pedestrian collisions occur because of driver distraction. Sadly, there is strong evidence indicating that distracted driving is a growing problem all around the world.
- Left-Hand Turns. A huge percentage of pedestrian collisions occur in busy, urban environments when drivers are making left-hand turns. You are probably familiar with the general scenario. A driver is waiting in traffic, preparing to make a sharp left-hand turn as soon as they see an opening. At the same time, a pedestrian is crossing the intersection at the opening of that turn. When an opening arrives, the driver speeds through turn, right into the pedestrian. This maneuver — an all too common form of driver negligence — can lead to serious injuries.
- Unmarked Crosswalks. Unfortunately, too many drivers fail to notice pedestrians at unmarked crosswalks. In Texas, pedestrians have the right-of-way when crossing inside the bounds of a crosswalk or when crossing at an intersection. This is true even if the crosswalk has not been marked off at that intersection. The only exception to this rule is at intersections where traffic control signals are in active operation. There, pedestrians must comply with the traffic control signs.
Were You Injured in a Pedestrian Collision?
We can help. At The Seerden Law Firm, PLLC, our legal team is committed to helping injured victims pursue the maximum available financial compensation. Texas board certified personal injury attorney Andrew Seerden has the skills and experience required to handle the full range of pedestrian accident claims.
If you were injured in a pedestrian collision, please do not hesitate to contact our Houston law office for a free, fully private initial consultation.