If I’m a Pedestrian, Who Pays for My Medical Bills After I Was Hit by a Car?

In 2017, roughly 5,977 pedestrians were killed and over 137,000 were injured in traffic crashes. Unfortunately, pedestrian accidents happen far too often, and the results can be catastrophic for those involved. With the rising number of pedestrian accidents, many victims have been left unsure of how to pay for their medical bills.

If you’re a victim of a pedestrian accident, you may be in severe pain due to the impact of the crash, leaving you with no other choice than to wait for help. Once you receive the medical attention you need, speak to one of our best car accident lawyers in New York to discuss your case and help you retrieve meaningful compensation for the injuries you’ve endured at the hands of a negligent driver in New York.

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Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in New York

Pedestrian accidents can happen anywhere, but they’re more frequent in urban areas with busy streets. Statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show some of the most common reasons why these accidents occur:

  • Alcohol-impaired drivers account for approximately half of all fatal pedestrian accidents
  • About 75% of pedestrian fatalities occur when a pedestrian is on the street or crossing the street in a non-intersection area at night
  • Three times as many pedestrians are struck by cars turning left rather than right because drivers are usually looking forward at oncoming traffic, while pedestrians are looking straight ahead

Generally, fault can be placed on the driver, the pedestrian, or both. A driver could cause a pedestrian accident by the following negligent actions:

  • Speeding or reckless driving
  • Failing to yield
  • Intoxicated driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Ignoring traffic signals

Whereas a pedestrian could cause an accident by:

  • Jaywalking
  • Walking in prohibited areas or outside of crosswalk bounds
  • Intoxication
  • Not using the sidewalk

Regardless of how the accident occurred, pedestrian accident victims can sustain debilitating injuries because unlike drivers, pedestrians do not have protection. As a pedestrian, you should be familiar with New York pedestrian rights and duties to help prevent an accident from occurring, but even then, you can’t control how drivers operate their vehicles.

Claims by Pedestrians Hit by a Car in New York

Under New York’s no-fault law, no matter who’s responsible for the accident, personal injury protection (PIP) coverage will pay for medical bills, even if the pedestrian was not in a vehicle at the time of the accident. If the pedestrian does not own a vehicle in New York but has a relative living at the same residence, the pedestrian can make a PIP claim with their auto insurance. If neither of these options is available, the PIP insurance of the driver who hit you should cover your medical bills.

Another option is to go through your health insurance coverage to cover your medical bills. If the driver who hit you was found to be at fault, then you legally have the right to be compensated for the amount paid by your health insurance. After you’ve exhausted these protections and are still facing financial challenges, you can sue the driver if they were at fault for hitting you to recover damages, including:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Future loss of income
  • Funeral expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life

On the other hand, if you’re at fault for the accident and you have maxed out of your PIP and health insurance benefits, you’ll be responsible to cover the rest out of pocket. Unfortunately, if your accident was a hit and run, you would still have to use your own PIP and health insurance. If you do not have either, you may qualify to receive no-fault benefits from the New York Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation, a state-funded program that helps accident victims up to a certain extent after being injured in an accident through no fault of their own.

close up of an accountant or banker calculating insurance
close up of an accountant or banker calculating insurance

Another option is to go through your health insurance coverage to cover your medical bills. If the driver who hit you was found to be at fault, then you legally have the right to be compensated for the amount paid by your health insurance. After you’ve exhausted these protections and are still facing financial challenges, you can sue the driver if they were at fault for hitting you to recover damages, including:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Future loss of income
  • Funeral expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life

On the other hand, if you’re at fault for the accident and you have maxed out of your PIP and health insurance benefits, you’ll be responsible to cover the rest out of pocket. Unfortunately, if your accident was a hit and run, you would still have to use your own PIP and health insurance. If you do not have either, you may qualify to receive no-fault benefits from the New York Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation, a state-funded program that helps accident victims up to a certain extent after being injured in an accident through no fault of their own.

Secure Compensation for Medical Bills With New York Personal Injury Attorney

Walking on New York roads can be extremely dangerous for pedestrians. No human body can withstand a collision with a two-ton vehicle. From sprains and fractures to head trauma and spinal cord injuries, you may face prolonged physical and emotional distress, as well as thousands of dollars in medical bills as a result of this devastating experience. Speak with the New York personal injury attorneys at The Barnes Firm to secure compensation for your medical bills and any other losses or damages.

At The Barnes Firm, we advocate for the rights of pedestrian accident victims and will examine all details of your accident to build a strong claim on your behalf. As you embark on your journey towards recovery, you can feel confident knowing that our best car accident attorneys in New York will stick by your side through the entire process. We want to hear your story and help you move forward with your life. Contact us by calling our office or completing a contact form for a free consultation.

The Barnes Firm (800) 800-0000