Liability in Virginia Beach Pedestrian Accident Cases
In a pedestrian accident case in Virginia Beach, a jury usually would decide whether the driver was liable for the claimant’s injuries. It is important to note that this is separate and apart from any traffic citation that might be issued by the police officer.
Simply put, the police officer’s determination that one person deserves a ticket or does not deserve one would not come into play in the civil injury claim unless the person receiving the ticket pled guilty. Aside from a guilty plea for a ticket, the civil jury is ultimately going to decide who is liable for injuries in the accident.
However, if a defendant violated traffic laws, then the case may settle or the defendant might accept liability before trial because it is obvious to the attorneys and the insurance company that there is no argument about liability. If there is a dispute about liability and a civil claims lawyer believes that the evidence shows the defendant was completely at fault, then a jury usually is going to resolve this question. If you have questions about liability in Virginia Beach pedestrian accident cases, contact Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers.
How is Liability Determined?
In every pedestrian accident case where liability is at issue in Virginia Beach, the jury is going to receive instructions based on general rules of negligence. Generally, the question is, “What would a reasonably prudent person do under the circumstances?” Depending on the situation, they also may receive instructions on the relevant traffic laws. One caveat to this general rule is if the jury were to find that the plaintiff contributed to the accident, then the plaintiff may not recover for their injuries.
Pedestrian Accident Case Process when Liability is in Question
The involved parties are given the opportunity to make arguments regarding their liability. When a person suffers injuries as a result of a car hitting them and they retain a VA Beach attorney, they could begin negotiating with the insurance carrier from the outset that liability falls with the defendant.
If the insurance company denies the claim saying that there is no liability, a lawyer’s next step could be to file a lawsuit in either Virginia Beach General District Court or the Virginia Beach Circuit Court where the case would allege facts showing that the at-fault driver was negligent. If the insurance company and the defendant maintain the position that the defendant is not liable, then the case goes to trial.
In Virginia Beach circuit court, a plaintiff’s attorney may conduct discovery, which includes written interrogatories, requests for production of documents, and depositions. This stage helps the attorney get helpful information to be used at trial. Then, the matter of liability can be argued in front of a jury who will make the ultimate decision.
Contact a Virginia Beach Attorney to Learn More About Liability in Pedestrian Accident Cases
Liability in Virginia Beach pedestrian accident cases can be complex, especially if the defendant is placing blame on you. In these situations, you should speak with the injury attorneys at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers. We offer free initial case consultations, so do not wait to reach out. Call today.