Wilmington Pedestrian Accident Lawyer


Pella Windows Class Action Case

$25.7 Million

We have recovered a $25.7 million settlement on behalf of our client on a Pella windows class action case.

Chinese Drywall Settlement Case

$24 Million

We have recovered $24 million on the largest individual Chinese drywall settlement case.

Marriott Vacation Club Class Action

$13.3 Million

We have recovered a $13.3 million settlement for Deceptive Trade Practices at Marriott Vacation Club.

Were You a Pedestrian injured in an Accident?

North Carolina is a hub of activity for motorists and pedestrians alike. There’s a lot of walking done around the state’s towns and cities, and that can cause some confusion as to the rights of pedestrians.

Some motorists think that pedestrians have the right of way at all times, and this is true to some extent. Because injuries from a pedestrian accident can be so severe, motorists may be held responsible even when the pedestrian is partly to blame for the accident.

What are North Carolina’s Pedestrian Laws?

North Carolina has traffic laws to promote safety between motorists and pedestrians. The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) outlines them, and they are as follows:

  • All drivers must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians crossing at a marked — or unmarked — crosswalk. Drivers must also stop for pedestrians waiting at corners and those who have already begun crossing at an intersection controlled by traffic signals, signs, or markings. In addition, when approaching a pedestrian on a roadway or the shoulder of a highway with no sidewalk available, drivers must slow down and proceed cautiously.
  • North Carolina requires that all children under 12 be accompanied by an adult when crossing the street with motor vehicle traffic present. This applies even if they are not using a designated crosswalk–drivers must still take extra precautions in the presence of children even when the children are unaccompanied.
  • When walking along roadsides without sidewalks available, pedestrians should always walk facing traffic and on the left side to see oncoming vehicles better and react appropriately if necessary. Furthermore, pedestrians should never run across streets except in emergencies–running increases the risk of being hit by a car due to reduced reaction time for both parties involved.
  • Regardless of whether there is a sidewalk, motorists may not park their cars within 20 feet of any crosswalk unless otherwise indicated by signs or pavement markings. This allows more room for people to walk across roads safely without having cars obstructing their view.

What are Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries?

Pedestrian accident injuries can range from minor scrapes and bruises to serious, life-altering injuries. With no protection from impact, they are usually more vulnerable than motorists.

Some common types of pedestrian accident injuries include the following: 

  • Broken bones
  • Lacerations
  • Spinal cord injuries

Catastrophic Pedestrian Accident Injuries

Brain trauma can cause long-term cognitive deficits or disabilities, while spinal cord damage can lead to paralysis. While these severe injuries can be challenging, there is still hope. When victims seek skilled legal representation that understands the complexity of these cases, their lawyers will work hard to win the settlement they need to pursue the appropriate aftercare.

Wrongful Death in Pedestrian Accidents

Wrongful death is a real consequence of pedestrian accidents. When a loved one dies because of someone else’s negligence, family members may seek justice by filing a wrongful death lawsuit.

What if I was Partially At Fault for an Accident in North Carolina?

North Carolina is one of the few states that is still a contributory negligence jurisdiction. This doctrine says that a person who was injured in any part due to their own negligence may not collect monetary damages from the party accused of causing the accident. The system is designed in favor of insurance companies rather than people with serious injuries.

Determining fault

Several factors are considered when determining who is at fault in a pedestrian accident. These may include whether the pedestrian was in a crosswalk and obeying traffic signals, if they were jaywalking or running, or if they were distracted due to using their phone or listening to music while crossing the street.

It’s vital that you have a qualified Wilmington pedestrian accident attorney on your side who can help ensure that you receive fair compensation despite being in a contributory negligence jurisdiction.

Do Pedestrians Really Have the Right of Way?

It’s said over and over that pedestrians have the right of way at all times. But is that really true? The short answer is no. Just like motorists, they must follow traffic signals and laws at all times. Pedestrians have certain laws regarding how they share the road with motorists.

They must:

  • Use crosswalks when available.
  • Use sidewalks when available or walk on the far left-hand side of the road facing traffic.
  • Obey traffic signals.
  • Yield to cars when needed, such as when they approach a crosswalk and a car is already halfway through it.

Pedestrians do usually have the right of way, especially when they’re obeying the above traffic laws. But that doesn’t mean that a motorist doesn’t have to watch out for a pedestrian breaking the law.

Catastrophic Injuries and Pedestrian Accidents

Pedestrians have no protection when they’re sharing the roads and walkways with others. They certainly don’t have airbags or a large steel frame around them, and they don’t even have the benefits of a helmet that cyclists and motorcyclists have. Because of this, pedestrians rarely walk away from a collision with a vehicle unscathed. And most of the time, the injuries they suffer are catastrophic in nature.

Catastrophic injuries are severe injuries that typically affect the spine, spinal cord, skull, and brain. Spinal injuries can occur in pedestrian accidents when the pedestrian is hit from the back, crushing the vertebrae and the spinal cord along with it.

These injuries occur more often than most people would think. The majority of pedestrian accidents in Wilmington, NC occur when the pedestrian is hit from behind, most often when the pedestrian is walking on the side of a road facing the same direction as traffic.

Injuries involving the brain and skull are often secondary. These injuries occur when a pedestrian falls after being hit by a car, and hits his or her head on the car or the surrounding pavement. Brain injuries, like spinal injuries, can be permanent and can greatly affect the victim’s quality of life.

Call today at (910) 772-9960 to have your case reviewed and start your claim for any compensation you may be entitled to.

Claiming Compensation After an Accident

Claiming compensation after a pedestrian accident is possible, but can become tricky due to the fact that North Carolina is a state that operates under contributory negligence. While other states will simply deduct an amount from any compensation granted, North Carolina does not grant any compensation in contributory negligence cases.

In order to claim compensation, the injured party must be able to prove that negligence on the driver’s part caused the accident, and that he or she was injured as a result. He does not have to prove that he was following the law, but it’s important that he was.

This is because the driver and his or her legal team will likely try to prove that the pedestrian was not following the law at the time of the accident. If the pedestrian was jaywalking, walking on the wrong side of the road, or otherwise disobeying traffic laws and signals, he can be found partly responsible for the accident. And this might prohibit him from filing a claim.

Contributory negligence may be waived by the courts when children are victims of pedestrian accidents.

Our Promise to You

  • National Practice with a Local Presence

  • Hundreds of Millions of Dollars Won

  • Over 30 Years of Experience

  • Experienced, Thorough & Dedicated Attorneys

  • Spanish-Speaking Services Available

  • Evening & Weekend Appointments Available Upon Request

“Joel Rhine and his staff did everything possible to help us in a very dark period of our lives.”

“I couldn’t have asked for a better firm to handle my injury claim. If you do not have confidence with your attorney, you need to contact Rhine Law Firm immediately.”

“Rhine Law Firm went out of their way to make sure that my mother-in-law obtains everything she is entitled to in an injury case.”

“It was a long, arduous process and we cannot thank Joel and the rest of the team at Rhine Law Firm enough.”

“Joel will make sure you are well taken care of. He will fight for you and what you deserve and go to all measures to make sure you get it.”

For the Legal Facts, Call Rhine Law Firm, P.C.

Pedestrians and motorists both have a legal responsibility when they’re sharing North Carolina roads with each other. If you’re a pedestrian who has been injured in an accident, you need a good pedestrian injury attorney in Wilmington to represent you. These cases can quickly become complicated and the other side will fight hard in order to avoid paying. Rhine Law Firm, P.C., knows the law and the rights of pedestrians.

Contact our Firm

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