George Hillis was struck by a pickup truck while crossing SR60 in Lake Wales on March 3, 2020 at the intersection with Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard according to The Ledger. The newspaper reported that Mr. Hillis had crossed the eastbound lanes of State Road 60 and was struck while crossing the westbound lanes by Jennifer Bews.
Hillis was taken to Lakeland Regional Health where he passed away. The newspaper reported that Ms. Bews saw Mr. Hillis at the last minute and swerved to the right to avoid hitting him. The newspaper also reported that Ms. Bews struck Mr. Hillis with the right front of her vehicle.
Questions Regarding Liability
News reports don’t always have all of the information. With this particular accident, the report indicates that Ms. Bews swerved to the right to avoid hitting the pedestrian but also states that the impact was to the right front of her vehicle. This information raises the question of whether the driver could have avoided the collision if she had not swerved to the right.
In other words, the expected impact would have been to the left front of Ms. Bews’ vehicle if she swerved to the right. Further, if the position of the impact to the right front of the vehicle is correct, then that would place Mr. Hillis as being mostly across the lane of travel before being hit and an accident could have potentially been avoided.
These are questions that the family should seek answers to.
How Insurance Applies
The first insurance benefit to check into is whether Mr. Hillis owned a car and is covered by an automobile policy. If he is, then his Florida PIP benefits will provide a $5,000 death benefit. If he did not own a car and is not covered by an automobile policy, then he may be covered under the insurance policy for the pickup truck. These are questions that the family should be able to provide an answer for. The $5,000 death benefit is payable under Florida law even if there were medical expenses incurred before passing.
The second insurance benefit that could be available is bodily injury liability insurance from the pickup truck that struck Mr. Hillis. Assuming that there is a colorable liability argument that the driver was not paying attention or did not react appropriately to the situation, bodily injury liability coverage on the driver’s insurance policy will pay for a wrongful death claim.
Talk To A Polk County Accident Lawyer About Your Case
Call Russo Law for a free consultation with a personal injury attorney in Polk County, Florida. We can help you and your family with an injury or death from an accident. There are no fees or costs unless we recover money for you.