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The last thing any person expects when they walk in or around the roadway is that they will be struck by a vehicle. Unfortunately, pedestrian accidents are not uncommon throughout California. If you or somebody you care about sustains a pedestrian accident injury, you should be entitled to various types of compensation.
However, securing this compensation can take time, regardless of whether or not you are waiting for an insurance settlement or waiting for your case to go to trial. Here, our Orange County personal injury lawyers want to discuss the various timelines that you need to be aware of concerning pedestrian accident claims.
The vast majority of pedestrian accidents that occur in California will be resolved through settlements with insurance carriers. However, that does not mean that the case will be without complications.
Insurance carriers will conduct their own investigations into the pedestrian accident, and they are not going to hand over compensation if they absolutely do not have to. Insurance carriers can put up roadblocks when it comes to paying out compensation for these cases. For example, the insurance carrier could dispute the cause of the accident and could even try to push the liability onto the pedestrian. An insurance carrier may try to dispute how much compensation they actually owe for the claim.
Insurance carriers will typically offer a fairly low settlement amount to begin with, but this is the starting point of negotiations. In some cases, an insurance settlement may occur within a month after the pedestrian accident occurs. However, if the insurance carrier disputes the claim, it could take multiple months or up to a year for a settlement to occur.
If an insurance carrier refuses to offer a fair settlement or denies a pedestrian accident claim in California, it may be necessary for the victim to file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court. Overall, the California personal injury statute of limitations is two years from the date an injury occurs. Victims have to file their lawsuit against the alleged negligent party within this two-year timeframe in order to recover the compensation they need.
When a personal injury lawsuit starts, it will still likely be resolved before the parties have to go to court and face a jury. Attorneys for both sides will typically continue negotiations throughout the discovery process, which is when evidence is gathered and exchanged between the parties. However, the discovery process can take some time, often more than a year. Additionally, if the case does end up going to trial, the injury victim will have to wait for the case to come up on the docket. Personal injury lawsuits, at least ones that go all the way to a jury trial, can take years to conclude.
If you or somebody you love has been injured in a pedestrian accident caused by the actions of another driver in California, you need to work with an attorney as soon as possible. A skilled pedestrian accident lawyer will have the resources necessary to handle every aspect of these claims on your behalf. Additionally, an attorney will know what to do to help ensure that your case moves forward as quickly as possible in a way that helps you recover maximum compensation.