New Jersey Pedestrian Accident Attorneys
Proudly serving all of New Jersey
Injured by a Negligent Driver While Walking?
Have you or someone you care about been hit by a vehicle while walking? If the driver was to blame, you may be able to get the money you need to make a full recovery. Please reach out to the experienced NJ personal injury lawyers at Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. We can help you file a claim in pursuit of full and fair compensation for the injuries and pain you suffered. To learn more about your rights and legal options, call us today at (609) 240-0040.
Our New Jersey Pedestrian Accident Verdicts and Settlements
- $4.85 Million - Awarded to a pedestrian who sustained catastrophic injuries after being hit by a drunk driver.
- $875,000 - Awarded to the estate of pedestrian struck and killed by an automobile.
- $500,000 - Awarded to the estate of a Pennington woman who succumbed to injuries sustained in a collision with a Toyota Corolla.
- $370,000 - Awarded to a Millburn High School senior who was struck by a BMW and sustained serious head injuries.
Please note that each case is unique. To learn more about what your case may be worth, please schedule a free consultation with us today. You can learn more about our firm by visiting our Client Reviews and About Us pages. Click here for more verdicts and settlements.
Is a Lawyer Necessary after a Pedestrian Accident in NJ?
The damage is done, and clearly, the driver’s insurance company can see that your claim is valid. Why would you need a NJ personal injury lawyer after a crosswalk or jogging accident? Because it’s likely that this is your first time being hit by a car and having to sort it out. It’s not our first time. When pedestrians are injured, we know all about the physical, emotional, and economic damages they’ll suffer. We also know that insurance companies don’t like paying what these cases are worth, often trying to lowball you with an initial settlement offer. In reality, you should be getting enough to cover your:
- Medical bills
- Specialist fees
- Lost wages or job
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
The sooner you hire a knowledgeable attorney to handle your claim, the better your chances of receiving full and fair compensation. The clock starts ticking the day of the incident.
Failing to understand and obey these right-of-way laws can have tragic consequences.
How New Jersey's Right-of-Way Laws Can Affect Your Claim
Knowing New Jersey’s laws is the first step to building your pedestrian accident claim. If the driver broke a law or acted negligently when striking you, your claim should hold up under scrutiny by the insurance company and the courts. On the flipside, if you broke any laws or were “walking recklessly,” that will affect the amount of money you can recover. New Jersey has a legal standard called “comparative negligence” that examines how much fault each party in a lawsuit has. So if your case makes it through trial and a jury awards you $100,000, but decides that you were 10% at fault for the accident because you were looking at your phone while crossing the street, you would only receive $90,000.
Here are the basic right-of-way laws you should know:
- Drivers: New Jersey Statute 39:4-36, which covers crosswalks, was updated in 2010. Before, drivers had to yield to pedestrians legally crossing the road at an intersection or in a marked crosswalk. Now, drivers must come to a complete STOP and stay stopped while pedestrians are in the crosswalk. However, "no pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impossible for the driver to yield."
- Pedestrians: Pedestrians must use provided crosswalks and obey all pedestrian traffic signals. They are legally required to yield the right-of-way to motorists when trying to cross where there is no crosswalk.
Drivers still need to avoid hitting pedestrians in the roadway, since they have the greater power in that situation. Driver who are reckless or negligent can still be found at fault even if the accident was partially caused by the pedestrian. As long as you weren’t more than 50% to blame for being hit by the car, you are allowed to file a claim against the driver and recover damages.
Common Causes of Crosswalk Accidents
As the victim, you actually have the burden of proof when it comes to establishing that the driver is liable for your injuries. In other words, you must have evidence that he or she was at fault. Our NJ car accident attorneys do this by investigating the crash and consulting with accident reconstructionists and other experts. We use evidence such as police and medical reports, witness statements, expert testimony, photos, video footage, and other documents. Some of the more frequent causes of vehicle-pedestrian collisions we’ve seen are:
- Texting while driving
- Driving while intoxicated
- Poorly designed traffic signs and signals
- Faulty road design
- Failing to look both ways when making a turn
- Failing to obey traffic laws
In some cases, there may be multiple causes and parties at fault. For example, a defective roadway or vehicle malfunction may have made the driver lose control of his or her vehicle. If that was the case, the government agency in charge of maintaining the road, or the vehicle parts manufacturer, might also be partially responsible.
What Else Might Be to Blame for a Pedestrian Accident?
If it can be proven that a roadway condition caused or contributed to the accident, you may be able to get compensation from the municipality or other entity charged with maintaining the roadway. Roadway conditions may include:
- Poorly designed traffic engineering
- Poorly placed turn signals or traffic signs
- Non-functioning traffic signals
- Signs or traffic signals hidden by foliage
- Poor street lighting
However, many municipalities and governments are protected from lawsuits or have caps that limit the amount of compensation you can collect. This is why you need an experienced and aggressive NJ pedestrian accident attorney to handle your case.
What If a Jogger Is Hit by a Car?
While you were going out on a jog, the unexpected occurred: a car hit you, even though you were abiding by the rules of the road (such as utilizing the crosswalk). However, the opposing insurance company is disputing your side of the story and refusing to pay you full and fair compensation for your damages. Meanwhile, the medical bills are piling up and your anxiety is reaching critical levels.
Due to the nature of pedestrian-car collisions, jogging accidents often result in significant injuries that require extensive treatment and rehabilitation. Victims may also suffer other devastating losses, such as pain and suffering and mental anguish. Some are so traumatized as to require mental health services.
The at-fault driver may try to discredit your account by claiming that you "darted out" into traffic and that he did not have the reasonable expectation and time to react. Our legal team can defend your side of the story by:
- Analyzing police and medical reports for details that support your account;
- Presenting photographic and video evidence;
- Working with accident reconstruction experts and other relevant professionals to have them provide supporting testimony;
- Getting witnesses to corroborate your claim; and
- Determining whether drunk driving, distracted driving, or other bad behavior on part of the motorist caused the crash.
We can also accurately assess your damages and fight for full coverage. If negotiations with the insurance company fail, we are more than willing to go to court; in fact, we thrive in the trial setting. There is no need to panic - the law is on your side.
What If You Suffered a Hit-and-Run?
We’ve established that if a pedestrian is hit by a negligent driver and suffers injuries, the driver is legally responsible for paying the pedestrian’s bills. New Jersey law requires all drivers involved in an injury accident to remain at the scene to render aid to the injured and wait for the police to come and make a report.
We’re sad to say that if the driver flees the scene of the accident and is never identified, there’s no way to make him or her pay for this crime. Hit-and-run accident cases are complicated by the fact that there is no defendant, but Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C., works to find solutions. It's more than likely that the best source of coverage is through your own auto insurance policy. If you have uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance coverage (UIM), it will cover you as a pedestrian in a hit-and-run accident. It is a good idea to maximize the amount of UIM you carry. If you don't have UIM, we strongly urge that you get it. You may also get compensation for your injuries if you have personal injury protection (PIP) on your auto insurance policy. If you don't have PIP coverage, we recommend you add it.
If a Loved One Was Killed in a Pedestrian Accident
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, pedestrians are injured by motor vehicles every eight minutes in the United States. Head trauma, including scalp lacerations, concussions, hematomas, and intracranial swelling, are the injuries most likely to be fatal.
If your loved one was hit and killed by a vehicle, you may have a pedestrian wrongful death claim against that vehicle’s driver. We know how difficult these cases are, and we do our best to provide compassionate and thorough legal representation for the family of the victim. When someone is killed, he or she leaves behind a huge emotional and financial gap, and our job is to get fair compensation from the responsible parties to allow the family to heal, and to provide for their future.
How Will I Afford a Lawyer?
No need to worry. At Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C., we charge no fees up front. We are proud to offer our clients No Win, No Fee representation. That means we will work for you on a contingency fee basis. You will not be responsible for attorney fees - our payment is a percentage of your final settlement or verdict.
To find out more about your legal rights and options as an injured pedestrian, contact Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. For over 25 years, we’ve fought for the rights of injury victims in NJ, winning our clients substantial settlements. Call us at (609) 240-0040 for a free consultation.
- New Jersey Crosswalk Accidents
- The Science of Car vs. Pedestrian
- Be Careful On Your Princeton Evening Jog
- Tips for Avoiding Car Accidents While Jogging
- Keep Your Kids Walking Safely!
- Does Pedestrians After Dark = More Danger?
- Understanding Pedestrian Right of Way
- Pedestrian Traffic Safety Facts - NHTSA
- Pedestrian Safety - CDC
- Pedestrian Safety - Department of Law & Public Safety
Call Our Office At (609) 240-0040 Today for Help
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