Looking for a parking space is frustrating enough without worrying about being hit by another car or struck as you’re walking through the lot. If you’ve been involved in any kind of parking lot accident, whether while walking or driving, contact Sumner Law Group, LLC, for a free case review with an experienced St. Louis Parking lot accident lawyer.
Why You Need Our Help After a Parking Lot Accident
Filing a claim or lawsuit for your losses after a parking lot collision may be trickier than if the wreck occurred on a city street or county road. Most parking lots are private property, meaning that the property owner places the markings for cars to follow, but unlike on a public roadway, those guidelines are just that – guidelines.
According to the Missouri Department of Insurance, some of the state laws for traffic may not apply in parking lots, which can make establishing responsibility for the accident more challenging. An attorney familiar with Missouri laws regarding liability in a parking lot accident can help build a case against the at-fault party to support your right to compensation.
Common Types of Parking Lot Accidents in St. Louis
Parking lots aren’t governed by the same traffic laws as St. Louis roadways, and sometimes, it can feel like the Wild West, with drivers competing for parking spaces, pedestrians everywhere, and cars disregarding the thoroughfares to take a shortcut. But that doesn’t mean it actually is a free-for-all. Drivers and others still owe each other a duty to act reasonably to avoid accidents that injure others.
Parking lot negligence is a chief factor in many of these common types of parking lot accidents, like these examples:
- Pedestrian accidents
- Rear-end collisions
- T-bone collisions that occur when one car cuts across parking spots and hits a car in the thoroughfare
- Head-on collisions of two cars crossing into opposite parking spaces
What Causes Parking Lot Accidents in St. Louis?
Even though parking lot accidents don’t often happen at high speeds, there’s still potential for serious injuries, especially if the accident involves a car and a pedestrian. Driver inattention and high levels of frustration are common contributors to parking lot accidents in St. Louis.
Other common incidents that lead to parking lot collisions can include:
- Drivers speeding through the parking lot
- People going in the wrong direction in angled parking space thoroughfare lanes
- Pedestrians paying attention to their phones instead of the parking lot traffic
- Drivers paying more attention to GPS or their phones than to pedestrians and other drivers
- Rear-end collisions when the driver of a vehicle backing out of a parking space doesn’t see another passing behind them
- Drivers and pedestrians ignoring marked crosswalks or other guidelines in the lot
Types of Injuries and Potential Compensation for Injuries in a Parking Lot
The injury you suffer in a parking lot accident depends on several factors. Were you walking through the parking lot? Driving? Was another driver speeding when they hit you? Pedestrians often suffer worse injuries than drivers in a parking lot accident.
Whiplash is a common parking lot accident injury, a violent jerking of the head back and forth and causing neck injuries.
Other potential parking lot injuries include:
- Fractures and broken bones
- Concussions and other brain injuries
- Facial lacerations and bruising
- Internal organ damage and bleeding
- Sprains, strains, and other soft tissue damage
- Joint damage
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
The amount of compensation you can seek in a parking lot injury claim largely depends on how severely you were injured and how much your fault contributed to the accident. Missouri law permits parking lot accident victims to pursue two forms of compensation: economic or specific losses and non-economic or intangible losses.
Your economic compensation can cover:
- Current and future medical care for your injuries
- Lost wages if you missed time at work to heal
- Loss of earning potential, if you become disabled and cannot continue your current line of work
- Modifications to your house and car, if you have a new disability and need accommodations
Non-economic compensation can cover:
- Pain and suffering from your injuries
- Emotional trauma and mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Scarring and disfigurement
Who Could Be Liable for a Parking Lot Accident?
Our parking lot accident lawyers are ready to conduct an independent investigation into the cause of the crash to determine who was at fault for the accident. A few examples of potentially liable parties include:
- Another driver
- The parking lot owner, for failing to properly maintain the facility
- A commercial driver dropping off a load at a store
- A contractor for failing to design and construct a safe parking lot
Some cases may have multiple defendants, which can complicate matters, making it even more critical to work with an experienced St. Louis parking lot crash attorney.
Determining Fault in a Parking Lot Accident
Our parking lot injury lawyers have the skills and resources to build a case against the at-fault parties by establishing their liability with solid evidence. Although the burden of proof for civil cases is lower than in a criminal court, you must still demonstrate the other party’s fault.
Some examples of the types of evidence often used in parking lot accident cases include:
- Eyewitness testimony
- Photos and videos of the crash aftermath
- Physical evidence from the scene
- Expert accident reconstruction
- Dashcam footage of the crash
- Security videos from parking lot cameras
- Information from any crash reports
- Medical records linking your injuries to the crash
The Limited Time You Have to File a Parking Lot Accident Claim
You have five years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit for damages, according to Missouri law. If you miss this deadline, then you effectively give up your chance to sue.
Contact Our St. Louis Parking Lot Accident Attorneys
Have you been injured in a parking lot in St. Louis in an accident that was someone else’s fault? Contact Sumner Law Group, LLC, today for a free consultation with a parking lot car accident attorney in St. Louis to learn about your legal options.