The car accident that involves a pedestrian usually has a huge disparity of damage. There are often significant injuries seen in the pedestrian and close to no damage to car occupants and the actual vehicle. The pedestrian is in a really vulnerable position since there is no access to safety features automobiles have.
Due to the difference in the damages and injuries that appear, any pedestrian injury lawyer will tell you that most people think the pedestrian is never at fault. This is just a common misconception. In reality, pedestrians might have partial or full fault for the accident.
Determining Fault With Pedestrian Accidents
In most cases, the driver of the vehicle stands out as the clear party at fault when a pedestrian is hit. Things like not stopping at crosswalks, running stoplights, and running red lights are very common examples.
However, generally speaking, the pedestrian is considered to have a good possibility of avoiding a car accident when compared to other vehicle drivers. This is simply because such accidents tend to happen on the roadway. Typically, it is the pedestrian that determines whether to leave the sidewalk and when to do this.
Legally speaking, determining fault in pedestrian accidents is all about determining negligence. To put it as simple as possible, everyone needs to exercise care when faced with any circumstance. For instance, both pedestrians and drivers need to obey all traffic laws as they use crosswalks, highways, and streets. When one party is not acting with reasonable care while the other one does, it is easy to figure out that the first party is the one that was negligent.
All this means that when the pedestrian does something that is not reasonable and that action caused the accident, they are the one at fault. The best example of that is when the pedestrian is hit as they are jaywalking. This is especially the case when coming from between cars that are parked since the driver has no way of seeing the pedestrian.
There are cases in which both the pedestrian and the driver share some level of fault for what happened. The jaywalking pedestrian case is the best example of this. When the driver was speeding and the pedestrian started jaywalking, both parties are at fault.
Personal injury lawsuits are dictated by who is at fault. Negligence is by far the most important part of the entire claim, especially since in many US states, comparative negligence is used to dictate what you are allowed to do when you are injured in any accident involving a car.
Comparative negligence practically means that the degree of negligence of the victim is also taken into account. Then, based on the law that applies where the accident happened, the claim will lead to a lower compensation, will not influence the compensation, or can completely deny the compensation.
Pedestrians can be the cause of a car accident but such a case is usually very complex. It is really important to hire an injury accident whenever you are involved in a collision with a car as a pedestrian since your damages and injuries will most likely be more serious. So, you need proper legal representation to file a successful claim.