A New York Pedestrian Accident Lawyer You Can Trust
When you’re hit by a car, we can help you get back up.
New York is one of the world’s most famously walkable cities. Even so, some motorists don’t think they should have to share the road with pedestrians. If you’ve been hit by a car, you may have injuries that will affect you for a long time, perhaps the rest of your life. You don’t have to deal with the insurance company alone.
Keogh Crispi, P.C. has a strong track record of results for injured pedestrians, including a $2 million recovery for a mother and son who were hit by a car while crossing the street. If you were hit by a car, we can help you take charge of what’s next. Schedule your free consultation with an experienced New York City accident attorney.
Who pays for pedestrian accidents in New York?
Injured pedestrians in the state of New York are generally covered by the no-fault insurance system. You can file a no-fault claim with the insurance company for the car that hit you. If you were hit by an uninsured driver, or in a hit-and-run where the driver is not found, you can file a no-fault claim with your own car insurance or a household family member’s insurance. If no one in your household has a car insurance policy, you can file a claim with the Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation (MVAIC).
Because New York is a “no-fault” state, to file a lawsuit against an at-fault driver, you need to meet the state’s definition of serious injury. Pedestrian accidents typically do cause serious injuries – that’s what happens when a car strikes someone’s unprotected body – so this often isn’t a particularly high bar to clear, but it’s still an extra hoop you have to jump through. Highly technical insurance laws may come into play. When this happens while you’re trying to rebuild your life after a serious injury, you need help. Choosing the right attorney will make all the difference.
We understand the severity of pedestrian accidents.
Physically, what usually happens in a pedestrian crash is a succession of three impacts: first, the car strikes the lower extremities; then, the neck, face, or head strikes the windshield or hood of the car; and finally, the upper extremities hit the hood, the roof, or the ground.
Again, when a car hits the unprotected body of a pedestrian, the injuries sustained are often severe. Some of the most common injuries in pedestrian crashes are:
- Lower body injury: commonly known as a “bumper fracture,” broken legs and other lower body injuries can occur when a car bumper hits the pedestrian.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI): damage to the head and skull can occur when a pedestrian is knocked to the ground or “scooped” onto the hood and windshield of the car.
- Upper extremities: the arms, wrists, and hands can all be damaged in a pedestrian crash, since the natural reflex is to use the arms to break a fall.
- Neck and face injuries: pedestrian accidents can cause lacerations and disfiguring injuries to the face, as well as painful neck injuries such as whiplash.
- Chest and abdomen injuries: if the upper body strikes the roof of a car, pedestrians can sustain broken ribs or other injuries to the chest area.
Some injuries, such as brain injury or loss of a limb, will affect you for the rest of your life. Even injuries that heal, though, can have permanent effects. You may have tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical expenses, especially if your injuries required surgery. You may be out of work for a long time. Those are real costs that deserve monetary compensation, and under New York law, you have recourse – but only if you fight for it.
We know how to prove negligence in pedestrian accident cases.
Pedestrians are hit by cars for many reasons, but most of them boil down to a motorist saying, “I didn’t see you.” Distracted drivers – whether they’re texting and driving, rubbernecking, adjusting the radio, talking to passengers, or just lost in thought – often don’t see pedestrians until it’s too late to avoid a collision. Drunk driving and fatigued driving are common causes, too. Other pedestrians are hit by motorists who don’t look before turning or pulling over.
Even in a well-lit city, night is a particularly dangerous time for pedestrians, both because drivers are more tired and because visibility is lower. In low light conditions, peripheral vision is the first thing to go, and pedestrians enter crosswalks from the side of the street. Too many motorists “overdrive” their headlights, meaning they go fast enough that their stopping distance is longer than the area illuminated by their headlights. In other words, by the time they can see a pedestrian in front of them, it’s too late.
Much has been made of “distracted walking,” but the data says that it’s not a major contributing factor in pedestrian accidents. New York law is clear: motorists must share the road, yield the right of way, and take reasonable care to avoid pedestrian accidents. We thoroughly investigate pedestrian accident cases to find proof that this duty of care was not met.
If you were hit by a car, we’ll help you tell your story.
Pedestrian accident cases are won and lost based on whether you can convince a jury. That starts with your story. You were there, you know what happened, and your account is the foundation of a strong case. We’ll help you tell that story in a manner that we know a jury will find convincing, and we build on it by gathering evidence to fill in the “how” and “why” of the accident. We pore over documents, interview witnesses, review physical evidence, and hire experts to help us explain why you were hurt.
Our policy is to prepare every case for trial, and that’s particularly important in high-stakes cases involving life-altering injuries. When the insurance company sees that we’re ready to make your case to a jury, they’re ready to pay up; if not, we’re ready to take them to court. We will not be outworked in our drive to get justice for you – and to send a strong message that drivers need to share the road.
We represent injured pedestrians on a contingency fee basis, which means you don’t pay us anything out of pocket. If we win your case, our fee is a percentage of the recovery. If we don’t win, we don’t get paid at all. We know the last thing you need after an accident is another bill, and we make sure you can afford to hire someone like us no matter your financial situation.
You need to act fast after a pedestrian accident. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can take legal action to preserve evidence and start dealing with the insurance company while you focus on getting better. Give us a call or contact us online for a free consultation with an experienced New York pedestrian accident attorney.