How Do You Prove Fault in a New York City Pedestrian Accident Case?
If you are injured in a car-pedestrian accident in New York City, you can recover no-fault insurance benefits from the driver of the car. However, those benefits will only reimburse your medical expenses and possibly the wages you lost while you recuperate. To recover the full amount of your damages, you will likely need to file a lawsuit and prove that the driver was at fault. You can do this by organizing all of the facts and evidence about the accident into a coherent story that demonstrates how the driver was negligent.
The New York City pedestrian accident lawyers at Douglas and London have more than twenty years of experience in presenting pedestrian accident evidence to demonstrate driver liability. We know how to overcome the challenges of gathering and securing that evidence and of using it to recover the largest available damage awards for our clients.
What kind of evidence will show a negligent driver’s fault?
Each pedestrian accident case includes multiple potential sources of evidence:
- direct testimony from both the pedestrian and the driver
- eyewitness reports from third parties who witnessed the accident
- cell phone records that might pinpoint the locations and movement of the parties in the accident
- onboard vehicle monitors that demonstrate the driver’s speed or other driving habits
- forensic examination of the vehicle and any damage it sustained
- security video taken from cameras near an accident scene
- roadway skid marks and other evidence from the vicinity of the accident
- police accident reports
Direct testimony from the driver and the pedestrian and any observations from eyewitnesses may be critical elements in proving fault, but memories can fade or change over time.
New York City pedestrians who are injured when they are hit by a car will have a better opportunity to show the driver’s fault when they retain a personal injury lawyer as soon as is possible after the accident.
Can a driver show that a pedestrian was at fault in an accident case?
Drivers and their insurance carriers have a strong incentive to show that the pedestrian was partially or wholly at fault for the accident. Shifting responsibility to the pedestrian can reduce the damages that the pedestrian might be able to collect. A driver might argue, for example, that they ignored traffic signals, ran into traffic in the middle of a street rather than in a crosswalk, or was focused on their cell phone and not paying attention. If the driver or their insurers present a more persuasive case– any damages payments to the pedestrian will be significantly reduced or eliminated.
Also, insurance companies often request statements from injured parties soon after an accident. If an injured pedestrian says anything that can be interpreted as an admission of fault, the insurer will use it to invalidate the damages claims. Rather than taking this risk, injured individuals should refer all communications with a driver’s insurers to the New York City personal injury lawyers.
How are disputes and differences over proof of fault resolved?
The skill and expertise of an attorney will be a critical element in resolving disagreements about the facts of a pedestrian-car collision. If the negligent driver and their insurance company refuse to offer a reasonable accident settlement, the case goes to trial. The jury will be charged with deciding what facts and evidence are more reliable and which party was at fault. When you consult with a personal injury lawyer after your pedestrian-car accident, ask about their experience in handling jury trials in personal injury cases.
Contact us at Douglas and London for a free consultation
We have represented countless injured New York City pedestrians to prove the fault of a negligent driver and to recover the largest damages awards that may be available to compensate them for the full value of their losses and injuries. Please see our website or contact us directly to schedule a free consultation.