The average payout for pedestrians hit by car accidents can range wildly from $10,000 to upwards of $1M depending on external factors. There is no standard amount because your payout depends on various conditions like:
- What state the accident took place
- Your nature and extent of your injuries
- Insurance coverage
- Degree of fault and liability
If you suffered minor injuries like whiplash or road rash, your settlement may end up in the $10,000 range. For serious conditions like spinal cord injury, your settlement may exceed $100,000 to $1M+ to cover your catastrophic losses.
If you need assistance to decide the worth of your pedestrian accident, schedule a call with a personal injury lawyer. Each state deals with pedestrian accidents differently, so you need an attorney in your state to organize the paperwork. Working with an attorney may raise your chances of a higher settlement, so don’t hesitate to call.
What Factors Affect Your Pedestrian Accident Settlement?
Any factor that influences your damages may affect your chances of getting a higher payout when hit by a car. Examples of factors directly affecting the amount of damages you can sue for are listed below.
1. Nature and Extent of Your Injuries
The chances of an accident settlement is raised substantially if you suffered heavy injuries from your crash. The main purpose of a settlement is to cover your losses like past and future medical bills. If you have more of these losses, the more you’re entitled to sue for in a settlement.
Note that the average payout for pedestrians hit by car are not limited to bills and costs. Most courts recognize damages like pain and disfigurement in a pedestrian accident. Non-monetary losses like emotional distress may be devastating, and if you can prove these effects in your case, you may increase your settlement amount.
Pedestrian crashes can lead to catastrophic injuries that require larger settlements to cover, like traumatic brain injuries and spinal paraplegia. Make sure your attorney covers every present and future injury to raise your settlement amount.
2. Liability and Fault
Drivers have a greater duty of care to promote safety on the road, and odds are they’re found at-fault if they cause a pedestrian accident. Even so, there are scenarios when a pedestrian is found at-fault. The greater the pedestrian’s liability in causing the accident, the less they can recover in a settlement.
Check with your attorney to verify whether you carry some liability in your case. Pedestrians don’t always carry the right of way for every scenario in a crash, generally in marked crosswalks or traffic signals telling vehicles to yield.
Liability isn’t always cut-and-dry in a pedestrian accident, which makes contacting a personal injury attorney that much more important. Each state handles liability differently, so find a professional who’s certified in the state where the accident took place.
3. Insurance Coverage
The driver’s insurance coverage determines the maximum amount attainable from a settlement without pursuing a lawsuit. Most state’s minimum insurance coverage is $25k per person, $50k per incident, but each state’s bodily injury minimums are different.
The unfortunate reality is that some people drive without any insurance. In a pedestrian case without insurance, your accident settlement depends on your uninsured motorist coverage (UIM). The minimums for UIM coverage also depends on your state, but most match the $25k per person, $50k per incident amounts as well.
Most pedestrian accidents involve expensive, life-threatening injuries. If the driver’s insurance cannot cover your losses, you may have to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
How Do I Raise My Pedestrian Accident Settlement Amount?
The best way to raise your pedestrian accident settlement amount is to prove the other driver was at-fault for your losses. This involves organizing evidence, talking to witnesses at the scene of the crash, and taking pictures of your injuries.
The more evidence to prove the driver was at-fault, the less likely you’re proven at-fault, raising your settlement amount. The more evidence you gather, the more you show to a jury or insurance adjuster the nature and extent of your injuries. Proving your injuries and how it links to the pedestrian accident is also another factor for your settlement.
Proving liability and the causal relationship between your injuries and the driver’s actions requires a legal professional. You can easily disprove your claim if you reveal things the insurance company can use against you. You need a professional in your corner to organize your case, and deliver it in a court of law.
Never Take the Insurance Company’s First Offer
The at-fault driver’s insurance company will give you a first offer to mitigate your injuries. It may seem like easy money, but refuse the first offer the insurance company gives you.
Pedestrian accidents usually involve expensive losses, so the insurance company’s first offer is trying to low-ball you for your losses. This first offer is an attempt to protect their profits, and that involves giving you the least amount possible. If you have a personal injury attorney on your side, they will fight to raise your settlement amount.
Damages to Recover For Pedestrians Hit By Car
A pedestrian accident settlement covers two types of damages you can sue for:
- Compensatory damages
- Punitive damages
Compensatory damages are the losses you directly sustained from the vehicle collision. This includes economic damages like medical fees, lost wages, or lost earning capacity. Non-economic damages like pain and suffering also add to your pedestrian accident settlement.
Punitive damages may also apply to your average payout, punishing the defendant for the grossly negligent behavior that caused your accident.
Do I Need to File a Lawsuit to Raise My Settlement Amount?
A study by the U.S Department of Justice concluded that only 3% of personal injury cases go to trial. The majority of personal injury cases get settled out-of-court, meaning the insurance company wants to work with you. Having a lawyer on your side is crucial to negotiate and fight for the highest settlement possible.
Find a Personal Injury Attorney if You Were Hit By a Negligent Vehicle
Fighting for a high settlement is important because you don’t know if future losses will occur due to your accident. The aches you feel now might be a sign that a muscle is sprained. A broken bone might be waiting to happen, all due to the actions of a negligent driver.
In order to increase your average payout, you need a skilled personal injury lawyer on your side. The average payout for pedestrians hit by car vary wildly, so negotiation is key. If you want to contact a legal professional in your state, our attorney network has 500+ law firms throughout the United States.
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Jan Reburiano is a content writer and SEO specialist for law firms focusing on personal injury, disability, employment law, among other practices. He has written and edited numerous articles and created commercial spots for broadcasters that you can find in his LinkedIn. Jan currently lives in Los Angeles, California while writing for clients from around the United States.