Jaywalking occurs when a pedestrian fails to use the designated crosswalk when crossing the road. This action is considered illegal in most of the United States, including Indiana.
Whether as a driver, passenger or pedestrian, you may be wondering what your legal options may be for pursuing compensation if you were injured in a jaywalking accident.
Let our knowledgeable auto collision attorneys in South Bend discuss your claim during a free consultation to learn more about how we may be able to help. There are no upfront fees, and you do not owe us anything unless we secure compensation on your behalf.
How is Liability in a Jaywalking Accident Determined?
While jaywalking may be outlawed in most parts of Indiana, drivers still owe pedestrians a duty of care to pay attention to the road and take measures to help reduce the chances of a collision with a pedestrian.
Generally, jaywalking is more dangerous in urban areas where traffic is heavier. Therefore, it may be reasonable to hold a pedestrian liable for damages since the duty of care may be greater for him or her in a heavily populated area.
However, South Bend is less populous than a larger city like Indianapolis, so pedestrians who do not use a crosswalk may not bear as much fault as a driver who was distracted or driving recklessly.
Indiana law still requires drivers to be mindful of pedestrians in every scenario, and if a collision could have been avoided, the driver may be liable for the collision, even if the pedestrian was jaywalking.
Can I File a Claim as a Driver Injured in a Jaywalking Accident?
If you are a driver who was injured in an accident caused by a jaywalking pedestrian, you might have some options fore pursuing compensation. The circumstances of the collision and available insurance determine how you may go about filing a claim.
If you were injured in a collision with a vehicle that swerved to avoid hitting a jaywalking pedestrian, you may be able to file a third-party claim with that driver’s liability insurance.
It is important to note that to recover compensation, you must prove that he or she acted negligently, and the collision could have been avoided. For example, if the driver was distracted, did not see the jaywalking pedestrian, and then swerved to avoid the pedestrian and hit your vehicle instead.
Indiana drivers have the option to purchase MedPay insurance on their own motor vehicle insurance policies. If you have MedPay, you may be able to file a first-party claim to have the costs of your medical bills covered.
However, MedPay does not cover some economic damages, like lost wages, or non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.
What Are My Options if I Get Injured in a Jaywalking Accident as a Passenger?
Every Indiana driver is required to carry bodily injury liability insurance in case they cause a collision that injures someone else. This type of insurance also covers passengers who are injured due to the negligent actions of the driver.
Therefore, you may be able to file a claim against the driver of the vehicle you were riding in if he or she caused an accident, including a jaywalking accident.
If the driver of the vehicle was driving in a negligent or reckless manner and failed to observe a jaywalking pedestrian, and you suffer physical or emotional damages as a result, you may have a case against that driver.
Can I Sue a Jaywalking Pedestrian for Damages?
One of the questions often asked in an accident claim is whether insurance follows the car or the driver. Usually, this comes up in accidents involving pedestrians. The simple answer is that liability insurance, bodily injury and property damage, follow the car. Insurance that follows the driver is usually MedPay.
This means that a pedestrian who causes a collision while jaywalking most likely will not have the insurance to cover the cost of your damages. However, you do still have the legal right to pursue compensation from the jaywalker by filing a lawsuit directly against him or her.
It is important to note that filing a lawsuit against an individual may not always be worth the time and money it takes to go through the legal process. The individual may not have the assets to cover your damages.
Can I File a Claim if the Jaywalking Accident is Partially My Fault?
In most cases, whether a pedestrian is jaywalking or using a crosswalk, a driver who crashes into him or her is most likely going to be at least partially at fault for the collision.
Therefore, if you are the pedestrian who was jaywalking and was hit by a vehicle, you may still be able to recover some compensation for your damages thanks to Indiana’s comparative negligence laws.
Call Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak for Legal Help
If you were injured in a jaywalking accident, you may have several legal options for pursuing compensation. Call our knowledgeable attorneys today to learn more about how we may be able to help you.
The consultation is free and there are no upfront fees.
Call (844) 678-1800 today.