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What Rights Do Pedestrians Have After an Accident with a Vehicle?

By David Hammond

In the bustling streets of New York, pedestrians weave through traffic and navigate crowded sidewalks, accidents involving vehicles can and do happen all too often. If you find yourself a pedestrian involved in such an incident, it is crucial to understand your rights and the legal recourse available to you.

Key Rights of Pedestrians After an Accident

Right to a Safe Environment

New York law mandates that property owners and municipalities maintain safe premises for pedestrians. This encompasses well-maintained sidewalks, proper lighting, and clear signage. If a lack of maintenance or negligence contributed to the accident, the pedestrian may have grounds for a personal injury claim against the responsible party.

Right to Compensation for Injuries

Pedestrians have the right to seek compensation for injuries sustained in a vehicle accident. Whether it’s a minor collision or a more severe incident resulting in significant injuries, the responsible party may be liable for medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Right to File a Personal Injury Claim

In the aftermath of a pedestrian-vehicle accident, consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney who specializes in such cases is essential. New York follows a no-fault insurance system, requiring pedestrians injured by a vehicle to first seek compensation through their own insurance policy. However, if the injuries are severe, surpassing the “serious injury” threshold defined by New York law, the pedestrian may have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver.

Right to Recover Damages in a Lawsuit

If a pedestrian’s injuries meet the criteria for a personal injury lawsuit, they may be eligible to pursue various types of damages. These can include economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages, as well as non-economic damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Right to Legal Representation

Pedestrians involved in accidents with vehicles have the right to legal representation. A skilled personal injury attorney can navigate the complexities of New York’s legal system, gather evidence, interview witnesses, and negotiate with insurance companies to help ensure the pedestrian receives the compensation they deserve. Having a knowledgeable advocate by your side is crucial in achieving a favorable outcome in your case.

Syracuse & Central Pedestrian Accident Attorneys

In the aftermath of a pedestrian-vehicle accident in New York, the injured party must be aware of their rights and the legal options available to them. Seeking the guidance of an experienced personal injury attorney can make a significant difference in navigating the complexities of the legal system and securing fair compensation. By understanding their rights, pedestrians can take the necessary steps to protect their interests and move forward on the path to recovery. For trusted legal counsel after an accident, get in touch with the team at CDH Law. Contact us today.

About the Author
David is a former military prosecutor and defense lawyer with over a decade of experience fighting for service members and their families. He served nine years and two combat tours as an active duty US Army officer, then joined the Reserves and settled down in Syracuse to be near family. Now representing people across Central New York charged with serious felonies, misdemeanors, DWIs, and traffic offenses, he puts the same level of commitment into his civilian law practice. If you have any questions regarding this article, you can contact David here.