pedestrian accident attorneys

Walking on the sidewalk in Wailuku or Kihei is usually safe.

But sometimes, even when you’ve done nothing wrong, you get hit by a careless driver. Pedestrian accidents on Maui happen all too often, resulting in serious injuries to the defenseless person who was crossing the street or simply standing on the sidewalk.

And sadly, many times the victim pedestrian is blamed for the incident. We won’t let that happen.

what to do after the crash: the process

If you’re able and it’s safe, call the police or 911. Police will document the scene, collect witness statements, gather insurance information of all parties, and make a preliminary determination of who is the at-fault party.

Though the police do their best, sometimes they don’t get all the critical information. If it’s safe and you’re able, try to take pictures of the scene, including: cars or vehicles involved; witnesses; the road; and anything else that you think could be important. There can never be enough information to look over. Something small now may be critical later on.

If you’ve called the police of 911, chances are an ambulance with medics will arrive. Many times adrenaline will cause you to overlook injuries. Let medics examine you. Don’t be afraid to take an ambulance to the hospital if recommended.

Once you’ve been medically stabilized and recovering, it is time to begin the insurance claims process. In Hawaii, when you’re the victim in a car crash, there can be a large amount of separate insurance claims, including but not limited to property claims; bodily injury claims; personal injury protection benefits claims; and underinsured (“UIM”) or uninsured (“UM”) claims.

After the initial trauma and shock wears off from the crash, it will be time to start comprehensive treatment. You’ll usually start by following up with your primary care provider, who will dictate your treatment. Treatment varies: it can be conservative such as massage therapy and physical therapy. It could require surgery immediately or down the road. Whatever it may be, it is important to listen to your doctors and keep up with their treatment plan not only for your well-being, but to preserve your rights related to your case.

When the time is right, and assuming you’ve met the procedural hurdles, your case will be ready to settle with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The time to settle will vary, but will usually occur after your injuries have resolved or there is a reasonable determination of when they will resolve. Settling prematurely will only lead to not being made whole.

what we do

We take the guess work out of the process. Locally based with deep roots in the community, our Maui lawyers will help you with identify applicable insurance, handle all relevant insurance claims, reduce or eliminate the unpleasant amount of paperwork, and assist you with your treatment plans.

With years of experience representing injured clients, we offer a guiding hand to stabilize your life immediately after you’re hurt. When ready, we proceed with litigating the case either pre-suit or with a lawsuit if necessary.

Your case is unique, with its own nuances and details. We try to learn all those details so that we can step into your shoes to try and understand how the crash and injuries affected your life to best fight on your behalf with strength and compassion.

If you or someone close to you has suffered a pedestrian accident on Maui, contact our legal team for legal advice as soon as possible.

what are personal injury protection benefits for pedestrian accidents?

Hawaii is a “no-fault” state, meaning regardless of fault, the applicable car insurance policy will pay a minimum of $10,000 of medical expenses related to your injuries from the injuries you as a pedestrian sustained when struck by a car. This type of mandatory insurance coverage is typically called “no-fault” coverage or personal injury protection (“PIP”) benefits.

If you were struck by a car, you have the right to use the PIP benefits of the driver of the vehicle that hit you.

The minimum mandatory personal injury protection benefits under Hawaii law is $10,000.00.

No fault or PIP coverage is mandatory in Hawaii for every car driven on the road. If you’re hit by a car, you should still contact your own automobile insurance carrier in the event you will eventually need to use underinsured (“UIM”) or uninsured (“UM”) coverage under your own policies.

If your medical expenses exceed the maximum benefits of your personal injury protection, your personal health insurance should cover the remaining costs.

After becoming our client, we will oversee the PIP claim process to ensure that all medical bills are timely and properly paid. After your PIP benefits are exhausted, we will work with your personal health insurance carrier to minimize your medical expense reimbursement.

other claims related to pedestrian accidents on maui

PIP benefits are only one claim in the process after a car crash in Maui or all of Hawaii. There are property claims related to damage to anything that you were carrying. Most importantly, you may also qualify for bodily injury claims against the at-fault driver related to your injuries. There can also be underinsured (“UIM”) or uninsured (“UM”) motorist claims from your own insurance in the event the at-fault driver’s bodily injury coverage can’t fully cover your losses.

One more thing about PIP benefits: in order to make a bodily injury claim or file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, many times you need reach a “tort threshold,” or $5,000 worth of PIP benefits paid to medical providers.

Bodily injury claims, underinsured motorist claims, and uninsured motorist claims are where personal injury attorneys become critical in the process. Bodily injury adjusters have an entirely different system when they know victims of a crash don’t have an attorney. They know it’s a confusing and intimidating process, effectively using your inexperience against you, ultimately coercing you into taking a bad deal.

We’ll make sure that doesn’t happen. When you’ve been involved in a pedestrian accident on Maui or any other outer island, it is critical to contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible you can get the necessary guidance to maximize your case.

other questions

Yes – many times the statute of limitations is two years from the date of injury. Schedule an immediate consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys on Maui so that we can review your case to ensure preservation of your legal rights.

We work on contingency fees for our personal injury cases, meaning that we’ll only receive a fee once we either reach a settlement or win at trial. Beyond legal fees, there are other unavoidable costs including filing fees, photocopying, postage, delivery fees, depositions, and transcripts. However, we will provide those costs on your behalf and deduct them from any settlement or trial proceeds. In the event there is no award, we’ll receive no fee.

Make sure to bring any police reports, medical records/bills, pictures, or any other documentation of your case and/or injuries. Typically, success of your case will hinge on these documents. If you do not have them, we will either help you obtain them or retrieve them on your behalf.

There are significant issues at stake when pursuing a personal injury case. How does insurance coverage work? Which insurance adjuster do I talk to? If the case proceeds to trial, how will I know the rules of court? How do I get medical treatment? Having a personal injury attorney on Maui is invaluable to ensure you are protected during any personal injury proceedings.

The type of personal injury case determines who will pay for your medical treatment. Often times, multiple insurance carriers are involved. In this case, the situation can quickly become overwhelming because of the amount of paperwork and adjusters contacting you. If you decide to retain us as your personal injury lawyer, we’ll take over all communication and make sure you get the coverage you need.

Wage loss is compensable in a personal injury case. We’ll work with your employer to retrieve all the necessary information to maximize the chances of your recovery.

tips to stay safe and avoid pedestrian accidents

Walk on the sidewalk at all times or, in the absence of it, walk on the road facing the oncoming vehicles.

Wear bright colored clothing, especially in the evening and make it a habit to wear reflective gear if you walk outside after dark.

Always cross the street at crosswalk and always look left, right and then left again before crossing a street.

If you are unfortunate enough to be in a pedestrian accident, contact us right away so we can make sure that your rights are preserved.

The attorney-client relationship.
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