Atlanta, GA Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
If you, a family member or friend have been hit by a car or truck and injured in a pedestrian accident anywhere in Georgia, The Millar Law Firm can help. A friendly attorney will review your case and explain your legal rights at no charge. Call or email us for a free consultation.
Helpful Legal Information for Your Georgia Pedestrian Accident Case:
- How much are pedestrian accident cases worth in Georgia?
- In Georgia, does the pedestrian always have the right of way?
- Who is at fault when a person is NOT in a crosswalk?
- How do you prove a pedestrian accident case when the victim has been badly hurt or killed?
- How long does a Georgia pedestrian accident case usually take?
- Do I need a special kind of lawyer for a Georgia pedestrian injury case?
If you are reading this, you or your loved-one may have a serious injury and you are wondering what your case may be worth. A pedestrian hit by a car and suffering from broken bones or internal injuries will usually have a much larger claim than a more typical car accident case. The value of a pedestrian accident case is based on the severity of the injury, whether it is clear who was at fault (the pedestrian or the vehicle), the amount of the medical bills and lost pay, and how long the victim will continue to experience pain and suffering.
Often, but not always. Although our common sense tells us that the driver is almost always at fault, insurance companies and negligent drivers frequently try to place the blame on the pedestrian. Sometimes, tragically, it is the pedestrian’s fault. Many times, however, the accident happened because a driver was inattentive and is now unfairly blaming the pedestrian.
The law in Georgia is that if a person is using a crosswalk and has the traffic signal in his or her favor or a pedestrian is lawfully in the road and seen by a driver, vehicles must always stop and yield to the pedestrian. O.C.G.A. 40-6-91 and 40-6-92. On the other hand, it is also illegal for a pedestrian to suddenly step off the curb or into the roadway so close to an oncoming car or truck that the driver has no time to yield. O.C.G.A. 40-6-91(b). These laws mean that if the driver or the insurance company can blame the pedestrian for darting-out into traffic, they may try to do so. But, a thorough investigation into what happened may also show that a reasonably careful driver should have seen and avoided hitting the victim.
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Georgia law requires a pedestrian attempting to cross a road outside of a marked or at an unmarked crosswalk to yield the right of way to oncoming cars unless he or she has already safely entered the roadway. O.C.G.A. 40-6-92(a). And in an area where there are traffic-lights with marked crosswalks, pedestrians are required to use the marked cross-walk. O.C.G.A. 40-6-92(c).
On the other hand, according to the Governors’ Office of Highway Safety in Georgia, it is not illegal in most places in Georgia for persons to “Jaywalk” meaning to cross a road or highway outside of a crosswalk. And the law also requires that drivers of cars and trucks must exercise due care to avoid hitting pedestrians on any roadway, even if there is no crosswalk. O.C.G.A. 40-6-92. Drivers in our State are required to anticipate that people may lawfully be in the roadway, and to be careful not to hit them after the driver is or should be aware that the pedestrian is there.
So, who is at-fault when a person is hit outside of a cross walk is often a question of whether a driver could have seen and avoided hitting a victim in the road, or whether the pedestrian stepped out into the road at the last moment or was doing something unsafe like walking out from between parked cars or walking in the road wearing dark clothing at night.
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In Georgia pedestrian accident cases the victim is often severely injured or killed and unable to tell the officer what happened. The officer sometimes only hears what happened from the driver, who might not want to accept responsibility for what happened. Many questions need to be investigated and answered to determine who would or will “win” a case where the pedestrian cannot tell the police what happened. Did the pedestrian suddenly walk or run into traffic or the roadway without looking both ways? Was the driver being inattentive because he or she was talking on a cell phone or distracted by an electronic device? Did the driver make a right turn at a crosswalk without looking for or seeing the crossing the street? Police reports in theses cases are often poorly written, confusing or inaccurate.
Fortunately, it is often possible to learn what happened in other ways. Immediately after an accident, witnesses often call 911. There are sometimes recordings describing what happened. Some intersections or nearby businesses have surveillance cameras and the recordings can be obtained and reviewed. And, in some cases it is possible to have accident reconstruction experts analyze what happened based on physical evidence gathered or measured at the scene or from electronic data taken from the car or truck.
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Most accident and injury cases take from several months up to a few years to turn into a settlement or pay a verdict. If the at-fault driver and his insurance company accept fault for what happened and do not question that your injuries came from the accident, a case may settle out of court after you heal from your injuries or medical reports can show the extent of the injuries. A case can take much longer if the insurance company refuses to pay or make a fair settlement offer. Often the only way to know is to begin getting the necessary medical care and to fully investigate the case as quickly as possible. Any lawyer or law firm that tries to tell you exactly how long your case will take is probably not being honest with you or is not doing all of the work necessary to help you get the full and fair value of your case.
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Probably. Pedestrian and vehicle accidents present special challenges due to the severity of injury and the tendency of at-fault drivers to blame pedestrians for suddenly stepping into the road in front of them. Although some cases are clear-cut, many Georgia cases in which the victim was hit by a car or truck require investigation, and this can involve specialized knowledge about how to uncover sources of information that may not seem obvious or require experts to obtain, such as black-box data. We recommend asking your lawyer or law-firm of choice what types and level of experience the attorney or lawyers have in handling or investigating pedestrian accident claims.
Insurance companies know that these can be challenging cases and adjusters often make unreasonably low (or no) settlement offers to unrepresented claimants. Studies have shown that accident victims who retain a good personal injury attorney receive, on average, two to five times as much as persons who attempt to represent themselves.
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“I was very pleased with The Millar Law Firm, LLC! They were very professional and handled my case in a timely manner. One thing I really liked about the firm was that they gave me right expectation and was very honest. I was very pleased with the way they kept in contact with me. I was well advised and kept informed during the case. I would suggest that if you want an attorney who will be honest and go after your claim or case, choose The Millar Law Firm, LLC.”– Anthony Love