What can I do to protect my rights while hospitalized after a pedestrian accident?

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How a Washington Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Handles Your Case While You’re Focused on Recovery

All too often, people suffer life-altering medical conditions after being struck by a vehicle—such as a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, or internal organ damage—that require immediate hospitalization. If this happens to you, it’s a considerable challenge to think about your right to pursue compensation from the negligent driver while undergoing surgery and other medical treatments and coping with pain.   

Can you take action on filing a pedestrian accident claim from your hospital bed? How can you be certain all the necessary evidence will be collected, or know what economic and non-economic damages you have? At Max Meyers Law, we understand how overwhelming the legal process feels even during the best of circumstances. Our team is ready to jump into action to protect your rights and handle the details of your claim during your recovery.   

Steps to Protect Your Rights While in the Hospital After a Pedestrian Accident 

In Washington, you have a legal right to file a civil claim against the person or party who caused your injuries. However, it’s imperative to take action against the negligent driver right away, as Washington's statute of limitations for personal injury cases is three years. This timeline starts with the date of your accident. person-in-hospital-after-pedestrian-accident

So if you’re unable to take immediate steps such as filing a police report, collecting contact information about the motorist and any eyewitnesses, and contacting an attorney, someone else can do so on your behalf.  

While you're recovering from your injuries, there are other proactive measures to safeguard your rights. Here are the steps we recommend.  

Put Your Health First

This is your top priority. Follow your doctor's treatment plan while in the hospital and once you go home. Also, keep all documentation about your diagnosis and prognosis, advised follow-up care, physical therapy, medications, and other aspects related to your recovery. This information is vital for your claim and helps you avoid disputes with the insurance company about the seriousness of your injuries. 

Notify Your Insurance Company

Call your health and automobile coverage carriers to notify them about the accident as soon as possible. Contacting them isn’t the same as filing a claim, but this step protects your right to file one if the driver fled the scene or the incident was caused by an uninsured or underinsured motorist and your policy has specific coverage for such an emergency. However, refrain from providing extensive details or admitting fault.  

Don't Talk to the Insurance Company

An insurance adjuster for the at-fault party may try to contact you while you’re in the hospital because they know you're vulnerable and may be unaware of your rights. Talking to adjusters so soon after your accident or agreeing to any of their requests puts you at a strong disadvantage. Get their contact information and your claim number, and state that your attorney will contact them.

Don't Post on Social Media  

Avoid sharing any details about the pedestrian accident or your injuries on social media platforms. An adjuster could search these sites multiple times while your claim is being settled. Even seemingly innocuous posts can be misconstrued and used against you by insurance companies.  

Finally, the Most Important Step: Hire a Skilled Washington Pedestrian Accident Lawyer 

According to a report from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, “78.8 percent of residents ride a bicycle on public roads and 37.5 percent walk or jog on public roads (including shoulders and sidewalks).” We also pride ourselves on having one of the largest metro areas in the country, Seattle, ranked in the top 10 of the most walkable cities in the U.S. So maintaining safety and holding negligent drivers responsible is a community effort 

At Max Meyers Law, we’ll do everything possible to protect your rights and build a strong pedestrian accident case while you’re in the hospital. Here’s how we’ll work for you:  

  • Collect valuable evidence. We take charge of thoroughly investigating the cause of the pedestrian accident, which could include violations of Washington's pedestrian laws. We’ll also secure the police report, collect witness statements, obtain surveillance footage, and gather medical records and wage loss documents to support your claim. 
  • Handle all communications with the insurer. This helps move your case along and prevents an insurance adjuster from trying different tactics to reduce or deny your claim.
  • Determine your damages. Evaluating your economic and non-economic losses requires a comprehensive understanding of pedestrian accident laws. We also assess your past and future medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other applicable damages to structure fair compensation.
  • Negotiate your settlement. We advocate fiercely on your behalf, negotiating with the insurance company for a proper settlement, like the one we were able to achieve for this mother and son injured in a crosswalk.  

And if necessary, we won’t hesitate to take your case to court to secure the justice you deserve. 

Max Meyers
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Max is a Kirkland personal injury attorney handling cases in Seattle, King County & surrounding in WA State.