518 Ocean St., Ste. B

Santa Cruz, CA 95060

(831) 426-3140

No Fee Until We Win

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We're the Force You Need for the Compensation You Seek

Santa Cruz Pedestrian Accident Attorney

Your Local Attorneys Serving Santa Cruz County and Beyond for Over 40 Years


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Severe burn injury

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MVA vs. pedestrian

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Sadly, Santa Cruz Has More Than Its Fair Share of Pedestrian Accidents & Injuries

On March 9th, 2021 a pedestrian lost her life in a rollover car crash on Freedom Boulevard. This story was published by KION News. That sad news followed on the heels of another pedestrian death in a crosswalk in Santa Cruz County on  February 10th, 2021. The entire staff at Wiles & Wiles extends our sincere condolences to these families, and to all of our neighbors whose lives have been impacted by a pedestrian accident.  Our best advice for what to do if you have been involved in a pedestrian accident is to report it, document it, have a medical evaluation, and reach out for legal direction.

Things You Should Know if You are a Pedestrian Injured by an Automobile

Both drivers and pedestrians are required to follow the laws of the road and use reasonable care. In most cases, it may seem obvious who was careless or negligent, but the courts look at a number of factors when applying the facts of each case to the elements of a negligence claim. Individuals who fail to use reasonable care in the operation of their vehicle may be required to pay damages for personal injury and property damage caused by that negligence.

Injuries involving a pedestrian and an automobile usually produce a substantially higher damage award for the injured pedestrian than auto vs. auto cases. The reason is simple. In a typical auto vs. auto accident each of you are protected by a giant metal box, your car. While you can still be seriously injured in such a case, the pedestrian has no such protection. When a pedestrian is struck by and automobile they are in the most vulnerable position imaginable. The injuries are usually substantially more serious and the settlement amounts are correspondingly higher.

A few of the most common factors contributing to driver negligence as it relates to pedestrians are as follows:

You need a Santa Cruz Pedestrian Injury Lawyer with a Proven Record

If you were injured as a pedestrian, you have rights and may be entitled to a settlement. Wiles & Wiles, Personal Injury Attorneys have over 40 years experience fighting pedestrian injury cases in Santa Cruz, CA. 

Put experience on your side. Contact us today. There is never any fee until we win your case.


Pedestrian in crosswalk

Safety Is A Concern For Pedestrians

“California’s roads pose unique challenges for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.”

“California has the nation’s highest number of pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities.”

(2020 California State Driver’s Handbook)

A report published by the Governors Highway Safety Association estimated the number of pedestrian deaths in California, in the first six months of 2019 was 519. That is almost three a day. Here in California, we are in the spotlight. Five states account for 47% of all pedestrian deaths nationwide(Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, and Texas.) 

Some causes of pedestrian accidents are foreseeable and preventable. Impaired driving is most often willful and deliberate.  Speeding is a choice, and an unprotected pedestrian is no match for a vehicle traveling too fast for road conditions.  Distracted drivers pose a very real threat, not only to walkers but to other vehicles on the roadways. Failure to yield at crosswalks, ignoring red lights and traffic signals, and making illegal U-turns are all examples of unacceptable behaviors that may potentially result in bodily harm and property damage. At Wiles & Wiles, we are here to fight for the justice you deserve if you are hurt because of someone else’s negligence.

When it comes to pedestrian safety both drivers and walkers have a responsibility to use good judgment. When pedestrians jaywalk or dart out into traffic, or walk while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, there is a propensity for physical harm that can result in staggering medical expenses and debilitating personal injury. Distracted walking is also a very real problem when people are more focused on their cell phones than the surroundings.

Unfortunately, some causes of pedestrian injuries are inevitable.  All too often we see walkers become collateral damage in a multi-vehicle accident, confrontations with other walkers, or fall victim to environmental issues such as potholes, broken sidewalks, poor lighting, crossroad locations, and poor road design.

Determining Fault

Determining who is at fault in a pedestrian accident, or if there are multiple parties with shared responsibility, is directly proportional to the financial compensation. Careless drivers and negligent drivers are responsible for maintaining control of the car, truck, or commercial vehicle. Municipalities are responsible for providing safe infrastructure for the residents and visitors to the community.  Walkers have a duty to obey traffic laws and act responsibly. In a complex legal situation such as this, our best advice is to seek the best advice you can from a personal injury lawyer with experience in pedestrian accidents. Now more than ever, even if you were partially responsible, you need an advocate protecting your rights.

You Will Need Help

The most important reason to partner with a pedestrian accident attorney is you. Unfortunately, the scope of physical damage in this type of accident is usually extensive. Brad and Tyson Wiles hope you will put things in proper perspective and focus on healing. Whether you suffered the injuries yourself, or you are dealing with family, let our legal team be the support system you need. They are ready to stand with you, and by you, in seeking justice and fair compensation for your loss.

An experienced personal injury attorney understands all crucial facets of a pedestrian accident case. They will have the authority to review all the evidence collected by a police report and gathered at the scene of the incident, They will use all available resources to discover new evidence, make an educated and experienced estimate of the value of your claim, and most importantly, they have proven strategies to hold negligent parties responsible, and aggressively negotiate with the insurance carrier to seek maximum compensation. A legal advocate knows the value of timely action in an accident case. The more time that goes by, the greater the chance of lost evidence.

Dealing with the insurance company on your own leaves you and your family vulnerable to the scare tactics often used by the adjusters.  When they question liability, the full impact of economic loss, or the actual extent of injuries, you are apt to say something that may ultimately be used against you.

We Are All In This Together

Brad and Tyson want you to know we are all in this together. Safer streets will help make Santa Cruz, and our neighboring cities, a pedestrian-friendly area. If your family is suffering as a result of a pedestrian accident, reach out. We pledge to aggressively seek the best possible outcome for our personal injury clients. We are the force you need to get the compensation you deserve.

We can not predict the outcome of your case, but we can say, with all sincerity, when you choose Wiles & Wiles Law to fight for your rights, you will have the full attention of the firm. You will have open and honest communication and an advocate who will walk alongside you every step of the way.


Some of the common questions we get asked about pedestrian accident cases

Personal injury attorneys take pedestrian accident cases on a contingency basis, meaning you pay nothing until you get paid. And if we lose your case, you owe nothing. 

The vast majority of pedestrian accident cases here in Santa Cruz County never go to trial. Most resolve by settlement before the trial date arrives. A case is most likely to go to trial when the facts are in dispute or when there’s a contested legal issue.

The more carefully you build your case, the more likely it is that you and the other party can agree on the strength of your evidence and reach an appropriate settlement. 

That depends. All cases are different. The shortest cases we’ve settled in Santa Cruz resolved in only a few weeks and without any formal litigation. Others required filing a lawsuit and may take years to settle. Most of our cases here in Santa Cruz fall somewhere in the middle. The more complicated your case, the longer you can expect it to take. You have some control over the length of your case because it’s up to you to accept or reject settlement offers.

Collision reports in California are available through the California Highway Patrol website. You would have to complete a form and drop it off in person or mail it with the required fees.

Yes. Every state has “statutes of limitations” that set a time limit on filing a pedestrian accident injury claim. In California, you have two years to file a lawsuit against a private individual or company, and only six months to file a claim against a government-owned vehicle or employee.

You may be far better off with a pedestrian accident attorney, especially in serious cases. For one, insurance companies may offer higher compensation if you are represented by an attorney. That’s because they know that an attorney understands the true value of the case, and they don’t want to risk the time and expense of a lawsuit by making an offer that is too low. Additionally, often the fact that you are represented by an attorney will trigger laws that allow you to reduce your medical bills significantly.  Some medical providers may even be barred from seeking reimbursement from you. We addressed this further in our “Do You Need an Attorney?” article.

First, make sure you speak to a Santa Cruz pedestrian accident attorney first before you agree to even speak to the insurance adjuster. It would be ideal if you could avoid making a recorded statement at all, but you may be required to under the Rules of Civil Procedure. If that is the case, be prepared and well-informed. The insurance adjustor will be looking for information to weaken the claimant’s case. Be truthful, but do not give any answers that you do not have clear recollection of and that you may not be able to recall later. Make sure you are 100% confident in all your answers. If there is a question you cannot answer, do not answer it. Avoid specificities concerning time, place, distance, speed, etc. 

The value of your claim includes your monetary damages like costs for medical treatment, lost wages, paying for help you need around the home or transportation to medical visits, physical therapy, and other related general expenses. Keep in mind that in some cases, these expenses can continue for a lifetime and this must be accounted for.

You total these losses and then multiply by 1-1.5 for moderate injuries and up to 5 for severe cases to cover pain and suffering. 

California follows what is called a pure comparative negligence rule. That means the maximum amount of compensation you can receive is proportionately reduced by the percentage of fault you share. For example, if the crash caused $40,000 in losses, but a jury determines you were 25% to blame, you would only be entitled to a maximum of $30,000.

What They're Saying About Us in Yelp

Catherine M., Whistler, Canada
Yelp Review, 01/18/2021
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I was seriously injured in an accident on Hwy 17. More valuable that the settlement was being able to sleep at night knowing these two were helping me and looking out for my best interest.
Noelle B., Santa Cruz
Yelp Review, 9/9/2015
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I was getting bullied by the insurance people. This father and son team not only made sure I wasn't bullied any more, but they also got me the PT I needed and more. My case was certainly not a money maker for these guys, but they still gave me their best.
Marlene S., Freedom CA
Yelp Review, 04/06/2014
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Brad and Tyson are amazing. They were able to make us feel comfortable and feel like we truly picked the right people for the job.”
Wendy B., Capitola, CA
Yelp Review, 03/21/2015
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After they presented my case, I was awarded the maximum amount that was allowed. I can now move forward, leaving the accident behind me. I am grateful that my friend recommended them, and I highly recommend them to you!
Royal C., Salinas, CA
Yelp Review, 07/31/2019
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All these five-star reviews for Brad and Tyson are spot on. Knowledgeable, easy to get hold of, friendly, pleasant, highly experienced, I could go on and on. They do what they say they are going to do.
Adam N., Chico, CA
Yelp Review, 02/13/2019
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All I can say is WOW! Respectful, caring, helpful, intelligent, If I could give them 10 stars I would. I highly recommend them!