Young woman hit by a car in a crosswalk without traffic light...
I was walking in a crosswalk and I was few steps from reaching the other sidewalk when I was hit by a car. I lost consciousness and when I opened my eyes I saw many people around me and the driver of the car (a man in his 50's) said: "I am sorry but I didn't see you."
It is important to highlight that there was no traffic light and this happened just before Christmas. I will remember this forever.
An equipped ambulance brought me to hospital. This accident caused a subdural hematoma (internal bleeding), bone fracture in the head, and the fracture of my collar bone. I had great suffering and pain (never been to a hospital in my whole life), and it was especially difficult because I was far away from home and my family couldn't be there with me.
I spent 4 days hospitalized and I missed more than a month from work. I was supposed to start a new job but I have to postpone it for medical treatment. Medical bills have reached $25,000 just for the days I was hospitalized. I had several follow-up sessions and I am still on physical therapy.
The police report claims that the driver is responsible for the accident because he "failed to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk." The problem is that the driver's insurance is quite poor and the max liability is equal to the amount reached by medical bills.
Based on this evidence, what are the odds of winning the case in a court? What is the right settlement amount? Is $25k too low? How can I get more compensation for all my pain and suffering? Thank you.
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ANSWER for "Young woman hit by a car in a crosswalk without traffic light...":
Caroline (Boston, Massachusetts):
From the facts you present, there is no doubt the driver was negligent. This is especially so because the police issued him a citation, or at least mentioned in the police report the driver's failure to yield to a pedestrian.
Based on that information alone you should be entitled to have all your medical bills paid. The problem is, the amount of your medical bills is already equal to the driver’s maximum policy limits.
As a result, it is quite likely the driver's insurance company will "tender policy limits." This means the driver’s insurance company will pay you the full amount of the driver’s insurance and walk away from the claim, leaving it up to you to pursue the driver personally for additional compensation.
While you would likely be entitled to much more than the driver’s policy limits, going to court will accomplish little. Unless the driver has additional assets which can be converted into cash, you may have little other recourse but to rely on your own insurance.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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