What is a Statue of Limitations?
According to Investopedia, “a statute of limitations is a law that sets the maximum amount of time that parties involved in a dispute have to initiate legal proceedings from the date of an alleged offense, whether civil or criminal.”
Why is this important to you or anyone who may choose to pursue legal options against another? If the statute of limitations has expired based on that offense, you may not have any legal recourse, regardless of your strong case or supporting evidence.
What is Missouri’s Statue of Limitations on Pedestrian Accidents?
In the state of Missouri, you have five years from the date of the pedestrian accident to pursue damages.
That being said, there are a few exceptions to the five-year rule. One is if the pedestrian was under 18 at the time of the accident, the clock may not start until the pedestrian turns 18.
It’s incredibly important to note that if the pedestrian chooses to pursue damages against the state or the city, such as an accident involving public transportation or a government worker, the pedestrian must provide sufficient notice within 90 days of the accident. This rule may be lesser known and can derail even the strongest of cases, so if you are considering pursuing damages and have recently been involved in an accident, contact your experienced personal injury attorney immediately.
Pedestrian Laws in Missouri To Be Aware Of
Whether driving your vehicle, riding your bike, or walking in Missouri, you must abide by safety rules and laws.
Some of the laws that pertain to pedestrians in Missouri are listed below;
Pedestrians must travel on the right side of the crosswalks whenever possible.
Pedestrians must not walk on the roadway if there is a sidewalk present and not under construction.
The pedestrian must yield to a vehicle unless they are in the intersection and crossing the road at a marked crosswalk.
As a driver, you must exercise the highest degree of care as your duty to protect the pedestrians and avoid collision.
A driver must yield to the pedestrian’s right-of-way if they are crossing within a crosswalk, barring a few exceptions.
What Damages Can Be Pursued Following a Pedestrian Accident?
Two common categories for damages can be pursued following a pedestrian accident in the state of Missouri.
Economic damages – economic damages are more straightforward to calculate and prove because they are typically tangible. Examples are medical bills, prescribed treatment and prescriptions, surgeries, missed income while you were out of work to tend to your injuries and more.
Non-economic damages – these damages are more challenging to calculate and prove due to their intangible nature. Non-economic damages can include pain and suffering that the victim is experiencing following the accident. Other losses can be the loss of enjoyment of life or hobbies that they once loved as a result of their injuries, anxiety and depression, and more.
A third, less common category of damages is punitive damages. Punitive damages are not awarded in every case and are reserved for those accidents that are incredibly negligent or intentional. Punitive damages exist as a form of further punishment for those who are guilty of extreme negligence or deliberate behavior and to create awareness and hesitation for others who may consider the same actions.
What Steps Should I Take Immediately Following a Pedestrian Accident?
Seek medical attention immediately. Some accidents result in what may seem like minor injuries, and victims choose to wait a few days or longer before seeking medical attention. This choice can limit your chances of adequately healing if there are injuries below the surface, such as soft tissue injuries that may worsen over time and don’t present symptoms immediately.
You can also limit your chances of adequately pursuing damages if you wait to seek medical attention, as the alleged offender may argue that since you waited days to seek medical care, your injuries may not have been that severe or that you injured yourself after the accident in another way and are trying to recover damages unjustly.
Obtain pictures of the scene, the vehicles involved, and the surrounding roadways. If you can obtain video surveillance of the intersection, this can also be incredibly valuable.
Speak with witnesses who may have witnessed the accident and obtain their contact information in case you need it in the future.
Report the accident to the proper authorities, such as the police. This step ensures that a neutral (and professional) third party makes a report of the accident, and you can refer to it in the future.
Contact your trusted personal injury attorney. As mentioned above, your timeline is crucial if you plan to pursue damages involving the city, state, or other government entities.
Regardless of the parties involved, speaking with your personal injury attorney shortly after the accident can provide professional and trusted advice on the next steps and how they can help you.
Your Personal Injury Partnership Attorneys
Our team takes a partnership approach with a small-firm feel to allow us to pay close attention to the needs of our clients and their families. We have several years of experience helping our clients overcome the challenges of their injuries and pursue the damages they deserve.
Contact our office today at (314) 347-3567 for your free initial consultation and to learn more about how we can best assist you. Injuries in pedestrian accidents are often severe, and you shouldn’t have to face them alone while you are out of work addressing your injuries and bills are piling up. Contact us immediately.