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Can a Pedestrian Be at Fault for an Accident?

Many people assume that it’s the driver’s fault if they hit a pedestrian. However, this isn’t necessarily true. Pedestrians can also be at fault if they act recklessly.

When Is a Pedestrian at Fault?

People walking across the street in new York City

A pedestrian could be liable for an accident if their negligence caused it. Just like drivers, pedestrians have to be cautious and follow traffic laws. If a pedestrian acts recklessly, they can make it very difficult for drivers to avoid an accident. In these cases, the jury may find the pedestrian liable for the accident.

Pedestrians Should Obey Traffic Laws

A pedestrian might be at fault if they run into the middle of the street and get hit by someone who was driving within the speed limit. By jaywalking and acting recklessly, the pedestrian has created a dangerous situation. Another scenario in which a pedestrian might be at fault is if they try to cross a highway or another high-speed road that pedestrians aren’t supposed to access. Finally, if someone uses the crosswalk while they don’t have the right of way, they’re also acting recklessly and may be found to be at fault. However, simply breaking the law doesn’t always mean that the accident is the pedestrian’s fault. Other factors will be considered, including the following:

  • If either party in the accident was under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • If the driver was speeding
  • If it was raining or dark out
  • If the pedestrian was wearing dark clothing
  • If either person was distracted by texting or something else

Anyone who has been in an accident should reach out to an experienced lawyer to protect their rights. At Leav & Steinberg LLP, we have handled hundreds of personal injury cases and helped clients get the compensation they need to cover their injuries and other expenses. To schedule a free consultation with us, call 212-766-5222 or contact us online.