what Happens If a Pedestrian Caused an Accident?
Following a car accident caused by a pedestrian, many legal complexities can begin to unfold. Depending on the circumstances of the collision, either party may be held liable for resulting damages – from medical expenses to property damage and beyond. Even if injured themselves, pedestrians must turn to experienced pedestrian accident lawyers to navigate these complicated cases and recoup any losses incurred. These legal professionals are integral in ensuring both parties reach a fair resolution.
Even if it’s easy to assume that the driver is typically responsible for car accidents with pedestrians, a split second of distraction from either party can have serious and far-reaching consequences. For example, an unaware pedestrian crossing into traffic unexpectedly puts both themself and the drivers in jeopardy – potentially resulting in devastating collisions that could injure all involved parties or cause one car to swerve off the road entirely.
When is a pedestrian at fault for a car crash?
Pedestrians don’t just have the right to be on roads. They also have a legal responsibility toward car drivers. If a pedestrian fails in their legal obligation which causes an auto accident, then—regardless of who’s more injured—the fault still lies with the pedestrian for causing the crash. Therefore, along with pedestrians having rights come serious obligations that must not be overlooked when navigating our shared streets and highways.
When a pedestrian-motorist accident occurs, it often comes as no surprise that the motorist is held to a higher standard of responsibility. However, this is not always the case.
Proving fault in these situations can be difficult—but entirely possible—due to how governments structure the related traffic laws. Though uncommon, there may be opportunities for pedestrians to bear some legal liability if they do not exercise caution on roads or sidewalks alike.
Examples of pedestrian liability
No matter who is behind the wheel, collisions between drivers and pedestrians can cause serious physical injuries and property damage. However, when the pedestrian is at fault for an accident, the driver can easily seek legal compensation and recourse with assistance from experienced pedestrian accident lawyers. From jaywalking to walking-while-texting, there are various ways where someone on foot could potentially bear responsibility for a car accident. Other examples include:
- Failing to obey pedestrian signals or pedestrian crossing signs
- Ignoring the right of way for a pedestrian crossing
- Engaging in reckless behavior, such as running into traffic without warning
- Walking against a red-light signal
- Jaywalking (crossing the street in an area other than a designated crosswalk)
- Walking on pedestrian-prohibited roads and highways
- And more
It is important to remember that pedestrians still have rights and responsibilities on the road. If they are exercising caution and following pedestrian laws, then they can rest assured that any traffic accident will be dealt with fairly by the courts. With the help of a reputable and experienced Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney, justice will be served for both parties involved in a crash – whether motorist or pedestrian.
Proving legal liability for a pedestrian accident
The role of pedestrian accident lawyers is central in determining fault and seeking legal recourse for auto accidents. In most scenarios, the pedestrian is not at fault – especially when they are crossing at a designated crosswalk or intersection. However, it’s important to note that pedestrian laws vary from state to state. You will need legal counsel with expertise and experience in state laws and local ordinances regarding pedestrian and vehicle accidents.
To prove liability in pedestrian-motorist collisions, pedestrian accident lawyers must explore every aspect of the incident. These factors may include:
- Witness testimonies
Having an eyewitness on your side can be the difference between conviction and exoneration. By gathering contact information from any bystanders, the drivers might discover valuable evidence that testifies to their innocence—namely, testimony stating whether they could have reasonably avoided hitting the pedestrian.
- Police reports
Police reports provide invaluable evidence in pedestrian-motorist collisions. They include the responding officer’s opinion of fault, as well as any citations issued to either the driver or the pedestrian. Because these documents are considered admissible evidence in court, they can significantly influence a judge’s decision when presented accurately and appropriately.
- Medical records
When an auto accident involves pedestrians, medical records become especially because pedestrian injuries are often more severe than those experienced by motorists. Medical records help pedestrian lawyers establish a baseline of physical harm sustained by their clients and may be vital for determining legal liability.
- Photos, surveillance video, and dashcam footage (if available)
In pedestrian-motorist collisions, photographs and videos can be incredibly powerful pieces of evidence. Whether it’s from a pedestrian’s cellphone or a vehicle’s dashcam, these videos and images provide insight into the preceding events that transpired just before the accident. As such, pedestrian lawyers may rely heavily on this type of evidence to prove their client’s innocence in pedestrian auto accidents.
- Accident reconstruction reports
The best attorneys will also rely on pedestrian auto accident reconstruction reports to help them better understand their client’s legal position. By studying the scene of the collision and other available evidence, an accident reconstructionist can gain insight into how fast the vehicle was traveling, whether sufficient braking time was available, and even the direction in which the car was traveling. These details can often be critical for pedestrian-auto collisions that are being litigated in court.
By gathering all available evidence and leveraging the legal skills of experienced pedestrian accident lawyers, drivers can confidently prepare for court proceedings and protect their legal rights. Even if you are responsible for an accident where someone is walking across the street, understanding your legal options is key to finding justice.
Hiring the best Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney
Pedestrian-motorist accidents can be extremely complicated in terms of determining liability. While pedestrians may hold certain rights on roads and sidewalks alike, they must remain mindful of their responsibilities and obligations to motorists, as well. Negligence or reckless behavior can lead to serious legal consequences – not just for drivers but pedestrians, too.
Working with legal counsel who is an expert in all aspects of local and state pedestrian laws is essential for winning your case in a court of law—especially if you are the motorist. For more information about hiring the best Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney, contact The Point Law Group today.
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