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What’s the Average Settlement for Pedestrian Hit by Car in San Francisco?

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Settlements for a pedestrian accident in San Francisco can range from a few thousand to millions of dollars. The value of your case depends on the nature of your injuries and damages, the quality of your legal representation, and more.

If you were hit by a car in San Francisco, you may be wondering what your legal options are. Do you seek a settlement through the insurance company? Do you need a pedestrian accident lawyer to file a lawsuit? These are all important questions that we will discuss in this blog.

Information for Victims of San Francisco Pedestrian Accidents

What Compensation Can I Expect After Being Hit By Car in San Francisco?

A lawyer must conduct a comprehensive investigation in order to estimate the amount of money you can expect to recover from a car accident settlement. Unfortunately, some attorneys offer free settlement calculators to try and entice people to retain them. This, in our view, is unethical and unfair to people who have just been through a traumatic event.

The truth is, each case is unique and case value depends on a wide variety of factors. These may include:

  • The extent of the pedestrian's injuries
  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Liability and insurance coverage of the at-fault driver

The San Francisco injury lawyers at Wisner Baum have handled cases for pedestrian accident victims that culminated in settlements in the tens of thousands to several million dollars. In one of our cases that led to a $15 million settlement, our client suffered catastrophic injuries and filed a lawsuit after being hit by a commercial vehicle in California.

While this example does not represent the average, pedestrian accidents can lead to significant claims for damages. Why? Pedestrians are vulnerable to fractures, lacerations, spinal cord injuriestraumatic brain injuries, and even death when they are hit by a car or other vehicle. For accidents in San Francisco, California law allows for the recovery of economic and non-economic damages, which includes reimbursement for medical treatment, lost wages, as well as compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and the loss of enjoyment of life. We will go into more detail on these claims for damages below.

To summarize, the only way to determine the potential value of your pedestrian accident case is to have your case evaluated by an injury attorney with experience in pedestrian accident litigation. An attorney will thoroughly investigate the circumstances of your case and provide an estimate of the damages you may be eligible to receive.

Can I File a Claim if I Was Partially at Fault for the Accident?

California law provides protection for pedestrians in many car-related accidents, even if they were partially at fault. Remember, pedestrians in California do not always have the automatic right of way. For instance, if a pedestrian enters the street in an unmarked crosswalk or engages in jaywalking, they may not be entitled to the right of way, and the driver may not be entirely liable.

In such scenarios, California's comparative negligence law becomes a key factor. This law enables an injured pedestrian who shares partial fault in the accident to file a lawsuit and potentially recover damages from the driver. For instance, if the pedestrian bears 30% of the fault for the accident, they can still pursue a claim, but the potential damages awarded may be reduced by 30% compared to a situation where the driver is deemed 100% responsible.

When a pedestrian holds partial responsibility for the accident, it is crucial to seek advice from a pedestrian accident lawyer. An experienced attorney can guide the pedestrian through the legal process, ensuring protection of their rights.

Proving Liability in a San Francisco Pedestrian Accident

Proving liability in a pedestrian accident case can be a complex process, but there are several key steps to establish who was at fault for the accident:

  1. Hire a Lawyer: Proving liability in a pedestrian accident case can be a challenging process, so it is important to seek the help of an experienced lawyer. A lawyer can help you achieve the steps outlined, ensuring that you receive full and fair compensation.
  2. Establish Duty of Care: The first step in proving liability in a pedestrian accident case is to establish that the driver of the vehicle owed a duty of care to the pedestrian. This duty of care requires drivers to operate their vehicles in a safe and responsible manner, especially when pedestrians are present.
  3. Breach of the Duty of Care: The next step is to prove that the driver breached the duty of care by failing to operate their vehicle as any reasonable diver would under the circumstances.
  4. Gather Evidence: Gathering evidence is crucial in proving liability in a pedestrian accident case. This can include witness statements, police reports, photographs of the accident scene, and any other relevant documentation. It is important to collect as much evidence as possible to support your case.
  5. Causation: You must establish that the defendant's breach of duty directly caused or contributed to your injuries or damages. You must demonstrate that the defendant's actions (or inactions) were the proximate cause of the harm suffered by the plaintiff.
  6. Damages: You must also prove your actual damages or injuries resulting from the defendant's negligence.
  7. Consult with Experts: In some cases, it may be necessary to consult with accident reconstruction experts or other professionals to help prove liability. These experts can provide valuable insight into the cause of the accident and help support your case in court.

What Damages are Available in a San Francisco Pedestrian Accident Lawsuit?

In a pedestrian accident lawsuit in California, several types of damages may be available to the plaintiff. Damages refer to the monetary compensation that you may be entitled to receive as a result of the injuries and losses you suffered in the accident. The specific damages that can be sought in San Francisco pedestrian accidents include:

  1. Economic Damages: These damages are intended to compensate the plaintiff for the actual financial losses they have incurred as a direct result of the accident. Economic damages may include:
    • Medical Expenses: Compensation for past, present, and future medical treatment, hospitalization, surgery, therapy, medication, and any other necessary medical expenses related to the accident.
    • Lost Wages: Compensation for the plaintiff's inability to work and earn income due to the injuries sustained in the accident, including both past and future lost wages.
    • Property Damage: Compensation for the cost of repairing or replacing any damaged personal property, such as clothing or personal effects, as a result of the accident.
  2. Non-Economic Damages: Also known as general damages such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life. Non-economic damages are often subjective and can vary greatly depending on the individual circumstances of the case.
  3. Punitive Damages: In certain cases where the defendant's conduct was particularly reckless or intentional, the court may award punitive damages. These damages are intended to punish the defendant and deter others from engaging in similar conduct in the future.

It is important to note that damages awarded in a pedestrian accident lawsuit may vary depending on the unique facts and circumstances of each case. To give yourself and your family the best chance at justice and maximum compensation, we recommend you consult with an experienced pedestrian accident attorney in San Francisco who can review the specific details of the accident and provide tailored guidance on the damages that may be available.

Should I Hire a Lawyer Near Me?

While it is not mandatory to hire a local San Francisco lawyer for your pedestrian injury case, hiring a local attorney has some advantages. These may include:

  • Familiarity with local laws and regulations: A San Francisco attorney will have a strong understanding of city or county-specific laws and legal procedures applicable to your case. Compared to an out of state lawyer, they will be well-equipped to navigate local court systems and understand the nuances of laws that may differ from state to state.
  • Knowledge of local court customs and practices: Local San Francisco lawyers are likely to have some experience with judges, other attorneys, and court personnel in your area. This familiarity can help them tailor their approach to a specific judge's preferences.
  • Better accessibility: If you hire a local injury attorney, they should be easier to access for in-person meetings, updates, and consultations. They can promptly respond to your queries and provide you with more personalized attention. If for some reason they happen to fail in this regard, you can freely give them a piece of your mind since their law office is near you.
  • Local resources and connections: Local lawyers often have established relationships with other professionals relevant to your case, including medical experts, investigators, or accident reconstruction specialists. These connections can help strengthen your case by providing valuable resources and expertise.

With all of this said, your search for a lawyer should not be limited to the city you live in. We believe it is essential to find a competent and experienced attorney who has proven results handling cases similar to yours, regardless of their location. So, while hiring a local lawyer near you can be beneficial, we do not think it should be the sole determining factor. Conduct thorough research, consider recommendations from friends, read client reviews, and review their track record before making a decision on a lawyer.

Consult With a San Francisco Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Today

The San Francisco pedestrian injury attorneys at Wisner Baum are conveniently located in Greenbrae just off the 101 Freeway. Since 1985, our firm has recovered over $4 billion in verdicts and settlements for clients. We successfully negotiated a $15 million pedestrian accident settlement in a case stemming from a commercial truck striking a pedestrian in California.

Put your case in the hands of proven litigators you can trust. Our legal team offers free and confidential case evaluations. Fill out a free case evaluation form or call us today at 855-948-5098.

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