When a pedestrian is hit by a car, there are two potential consequences: criminal and civil. Criminal law is the branch of law that deals with crimes and punishment. Civil law, on the other hand, is the branch of law that deals with disputes between people or organizations. In most cases, when a pedestrian is hit by a car, the criminal consequences will be more severe than the civil ones. But this isn’t always the case. Let’s take a closer look at both types of consequences.
What Are the Criminal Consequences of a Pedestrian-Car Accident?
If the driver of the car is found to be at fault for the accident, they could be charged with a crime. The specific charge will depend on the circumstances of the accident, but it could be anything from vehicular manslaughter to reckless driving. If the driver is convicted of a crime, they will likely face jail time, a fine, or both.
Here are some examples of criminal charges that could be filed in a pedestrian-car accident:
This is the most serious charge that can be filed in a pedestrian-car accident. Vehicular manslaughter is a type of homicide, which means it’s the killing of another person. To be charged with vehicular manslaughter, the prosecutor must prove that the driver acted in a way that was so careless or reckless that it led to the death of the pedestrian.
Reckless driving is a less serious charge than vehicular manslaughter, but it’s still a crime. If you are charged with reckless driving, the prosecutor has to prove that the driver was driving in a way that showed a disregard for the safety of others. This could be anything from speeding to running a red light.
Driving under the influence (DUI) is another possible charge in a pedestrian-car accident. If the driver was intoxicated at the time of the accident, they could be charged with DUI. This is a serious charge, and the penalties can be severe.
What Are the Civil Consequences of a Pedestrian-Car Accident?
The civil consequences of a pedestrian-car accident are usually less severe than the criminal ones. In most cases, the only civil consequence will be a lawsuit filed by the victim against the driver.
In a civil lawsuit, the pedestrian will try to recover damages from the driver. These damages could include medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If the pedestrian is successful in their lawsuit, they will be awarded a monetary judgment from the driver.
The civil consequences of a pedestrian-car accident can be serious, but they are usually not as severe as the criminal ones. Here are some examples of civil lawsuits that could be filed in a pedestrian-car accident:
Most pedestrian-car accidents are caused by the driver’s negligence. Negligence is when someone fails to take reasonable care to avoid harming others. To win a negligence lawsuit, the pedestrian must prove that the driver owed them a duty of care, that the driver breached this duty, and that the breach led to the accident.
If the pedestrian is killed in the accident, their family may file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver. A wrongful death lawsuit is a type of civil suit that allows the victim’s family to recover damages from the person who caused their death. If you want to win a wrongful death lawsuit it must be proven that the driver was at fault for the accident and that their death was a direct result of the accident.
What To Do If You’re Charged With a Crime
If you’re charged with a crime in connection with a pedestrian-car accident, it’s important to seek legal help as soon as possible. A conviction can lead to jail time, a fine, or both. An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to advise you of your rights and help you build a strong defense.
Not only can a conviction lead to jail time, but it can also have a lasting impact on your life. A criminal record can make it difficult to get a job, rent an apartment, or get a loan. If you’re facing criminal charges, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced lawyer who can help you protect your rights.
The Bottom Line
Pedestrian-car accidents can have both civil and criminal consequences. With the help of an experienced lawyer, you can defend against the charges and protect your rights. So, if you’re facing criminal charges in connection with a pedestrian-car accident, don’t hesitate to seek legal help.