In addition to other motor vehicles and bicycles, drivers in Oklahoma also have a legal obligation to drive safely and follow traffic laws around pedestrians. Unfortunately, far too many drivers fail to live up to this responsibility, resulting in hundreds of preventable injuries, and millions of dollars in cumulative losses, every single year.
If you or someone you know were recently struck by a motor vehicle, retaining an Altus pedestrian accident lawyer would be a key first step towards protecting your rights as an injured person. A dedicated personal injury attorney could be the steadfast and tenacious ally you need to seek fair civil compensation for your injuries.
Are Drivers Always at Fault for Pedestrian Crashes?
The most tragic example of a pedestrian injury case occurs when a negligent or distracted driver fails to look out for innocent children playing in the neighborhood. People tend to mistakenly believe that the child is somehow at fault for what happened. However, even a driver that may otherwise be following the law can be found legally negligent if their driving is considered dangerous or unsafe for the driving conditions. For example, a driver can travel through a neighborhood at 25 miles per hour and not be breaking the speed limit but if a driver suspects kids playing in the neighborhood then it likely is not safe to travel at that speed.
However, there are instances where plaintiffs in pedestrian accidents may also need to show that they themselves were not negligent. For example, if a truck driver only hit and injured a pedestrian because that pedestrian stepped out into a crosswalk in violation of a traffic signal, it could be considered more the fault of the pedestrian rather than the driver.
Under Oklahoma Statutes Title 23 §13, anyone found partially to blame for their own injuries is subject to having their final damage award proportionately reduced by their percentage of fault. A plaintiff who was deemed 20 percent at fault will therefore have their damages award reduced by 20 percent. If that percentage is greater than 50 percent, recovery is barred completely. In light of this, retaining an Altus pedestrian crash lawyer is often essential to maximizing civil recovery if allegations of comparative negligence come into play. If you were injured in such an accident, do not be discouraged in seeking legal advice just because you feel as though you were partly at fault. Talk to our team of Southwest Oklahoma attorneys today.
Statutory Deadlines for Filing a Lawsuit
Through successful civil litigation, a pedestrian who was hurt in an accident could seek financial compensation for every form of harm a negligent driver inflicted on them, regardless of whether those damages have objective financial values. Recoverable losses after this kind of incident could include but are not restricted to:
- Medical expenses
- Physical pain and suffering
- Lost work wages
- Emotional anguish
- Damage to personal property
- Long-term impacts of a newfound disability or disfigurement
However, in most instances, per OK Stat. Tit. 12 §95, those who have sustained a personal injury have only two years after discovering their injuries in which to file suit, or else their case will be time-barred. This means that they will be ineligible to file suit against the responsible person or recover anything whatsoever. Schedule your free consult with a Southwest Oklahoma pedestrian accident attorney to preserve your right to seek recovery.
Talk to an Altus Pedestrian Accident Attorney for Advice
Even at relatively low speeds, pedestrian accidents can cause catastrophic injuries that permanently alter the course of someone’s life. If you were involved in such an incident recently, the next steps you take to exercise your legal rights could have immense repercussions on your physical and financial wellbeing.
No matter the circumstances that led to you getting hurt, an Altus pedestrian accident lawyer could work hard to ensure a positive outcome for your case. Call today to discuss your potential case.