Pedestrian accidents - Who is held liable?

Pedestrian accidents – Who is held liable?


Vehicle accidents that involve pedestrians end with different types of damage – massive injuries to the pedestrian along with little damage to the car and no injuries to the passengers of the car. On busy roads, pedestrians usually occupy the most vulnerable condition but that doesn’t make it mandatory for drivers to be at fault in an accident involving pedestrians. 

Both drivers and pedestrians should act carefully while on highways and roads. Failure to meet the duty of care will lead to negligence. Moreover, it is usually believed that pedestrians are never wrong in a vehicle accident but contrary to that belief, there are situations when a pedestrian can also be held legally at fault for an accident. 

A pedestrian-car accident – Who is held liable?

If you’ve been in a pedestrian-car accident, one of the foremost things you have to consider is a liability. The person who is held responsible for the accident, whether the pedestrian or the driver, should pay for damages. 

When you have to prove liability, this means you have to prove that one party was careless or negligent. But you have to prove that the person was negligent. How is that possible? You have to show the following:

  • The person who was responsible for the crash was legally bound to avoid hurting you. This is called the ‘duty of care’.
  • The person liable for the accident violated the duty of care
  • This breach of duty led to the accident and 
  • This breach of duty causes losses and injuries

There are times when it’s easy to determine the liability in a pedestrian-car accident. If the driver of a car hits a pedestrian in a crosswalk, the driver will be at fault. On the other hand, if a jaywalking pedestrian who wears black clothing is hit by a car at night, the pedestrian is definitely held responsible. 

When is a pedestrian held responsible for a car accident?

It is often assumed that the drivers of the vehicles are responsible for crashes with pedestrians. In a pedestrian-car accident, pedestrians are more vulnerable to getting severely injured. 

However, there are cases where pedestrians can be negligent as well. Here are a few situations:

  • When a pedestrian crosses the main road in an area apart from a crosswalk
  • When a pedestrian walks on a road that prohibits pedestrians
  • When the pedestrian doesn’t follow a traffic signal
  • When a pedestrian suddenly comes in front of a car without giving the driver adequate time to stop

Pedestrians who are held responsible for an accident not only have to bear the bills of the accident but can also be held responsible for meeting the damages of other people. The pedestrian will have to claim for his personal losses from his insurance company. 
Therefore, much against the popular belief that drivers are always held liable for accidents with a pedestrian, the opposite is also true. You just have to gather evidence in order to prove yourself right and the other party wrong. Get in touch with law firms like Ladah Law Firm for the best accident attorneys.

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