In most vehicle-pedestrian accidents, there’s usually an assumption that the driver is always to blame. One of the basic rules of driving is that “the pedestrian always has the right of way,.” But this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, pedestrians are negligent and run into the road when drivers exercise their due diligence. Let’s go over how to determine fault in a pedestrian-car accident in Maryland.
Determining Fault in a Pedestrian-Car Accident
In Maryland, both drivers and pedestrians have certain responsibilities to exercise a duty of care on the road to avoid injuring other people. This means they must observe the necessary traffic rules and be vigilant to ensure their safety and the safety of others. A pedestrian can be found fully or partially at fault for a car accident in some cases. Some common situations where a pedestrian may be at fault can involve:
- Crossing in the middle of the street, jaywalking, or otherwise crossing outside of the crosswalk
- Crossing the road even when a “Do Not Walk” sign is present
- Walking in a street while intoxicated
- Walking along highways, bridges, or roadways where pedestrians are not permitted
If the driver is obviously at fault for the accident, the pedestrian can usually recover compensation for the damage. However, if the pedestrian bears all of the blame for the accident, they will likely not be able to recover compensation for injuries.
When the Driver is at Fault
Maryland is an “At-fault” state, meaning whoever is at fault in a car accident is liable for any injuries caused to other parties. The driver’s insurance will pay for the medical bills and property damage in such cases. They may also compensate the pedestrian for pain and suffering and any other losses resulting from the accident.
When the Pedestrian is at Fault
If pedestrians are at fault in a pedestrian-car accident in Maryland, they will not receive any compensation for their damaged property. Instead, they must pay the driver’s losses if they choose to sue. This is because the “At-fault” rule applies to both parties.
When are Both Parties at Fault?
Rarely is a pedestrian 100% responsible for an accident. Some blame usually falls on the driver. For example, a driver must yield to pedestrians even when the person is on the wrong side of the road, except in unavoidable circumstances. If the driver doesn’t yield the right of way, both parties will share in the blame. This is due to Maryland’s contributory negligence statute. Contributory negligence states that if both parties are at fault in a pedestrian-car accident, neither can claim damages for their injuries. The at-fault parties would only be liable for their injuries and losses.
Contact The Snyder Law Group Today
The Snyder Law Group, LLC, proudly represents clients throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C. Our experienced Baltimore attorneys understand the frustration that comes with an insurance company, medical professional, or other party that refuses to accept liability for negligent or reckless behavior. You can take heart in knowing there are talented and experienced lawyers ready to work for you. We are experienced in handling personal injury claims of medical malpractice or injury resulting from serious car and truck accidents, and have secured hundreds of millions in verdicts and settlements. Please visit our website, www.410thefirm.com, or call us at 410-843-3476, for more information. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.