Can I Sue If I Was Jaywalking and Got Hit By A Car?
California, especially the city of Los Angeles, experiences several hundreds of pedestrian accidents each year. During the covid-19 pandemic, these numbers were at an all-time high as more people began to start walking around their neighborhood and community as a form of exercise. Pedestrian accidents could be a very traumatic experience and result in very severe injuries that could cause permanent damages forever. Severe injuries may require years of medical and physical therapy treatments, and the pedestrian may have to take years from work while they focus on healing from their injuries.
If you have been injured as a pedestrian, contact our top-rated car accident attorneys today for a free case evaluation. Pedestrian accidents could be very complex, especially if there are multiple parties involved. They could also be complex if the pedestrian was jaywalking at the time of the accident. This type of situation would require an experienced attorney who has dealt with pedestrian accidents for several decades. Our top-rated car accident attorneys have been representing victims and recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients for several decades. Pedestrian accidents require extensive investigations that only a top-rated local attorney could do.
Jaywalking Laws in California
Under California Vehicle Code 21955, jaywalking is prohibited. The Vehicle Code goes on to State:
“A pedestrian shall not cross a roadway at any other location except within a crosswalk if there is an adjacent intersection controlled by a traffic signal device.”
Can I be arrested for jaywalking in California?
Usually, pedestrians who have been jaywalking are not arrested simply because they were jaywalking. There needs to be another type of offense that will validate the arrest.
Does a pedestrian have to yield the right-of-way?
In California, a pedestrian must yield the right-of-way to oncoming cars when they are crossing a street that is not a sidewalk.
Could I be at fault if I was jaywalking at the time of the accident?
Jaywalking is considered illegal in California. However, you may still be able to file a claim against the responsible party who has caused injuries. In California, drivers have the duty to drive any reasonably safe manner. This means that they must constantly be aware of their surroundings and prevent any accidents. When the driver fails to follow that duty, and causes an accident, they could be held liable for the injured party.
Comparative Negligence Laws
Each state has a different stance on how liability is determined when the victim is also partially responsible for their injuries. In California, the laws fall under a pure comparative negligence system. This means that the court will assign a percentage of fault to each party, to the plaintiff (who is filing the lawsuit) and to the defendant (who is defending themselves in the lawsuit). After a percentage of liability is determined, the injured victim’s compensation will be reduced by the same percentage.
For example, if the pedestrian was determined to be 20% responsible for the accident because they were jaywalking at the time, and they have incurred around $100,000 of damages, they will be able to receive only $80,000 from the other at-fault driver. The $20,000 is reduced to reflect the 20% liability that the pedestrian is responsible for because they were jaywalking.
Jaywalking does not necessarily mean that you will not recover a single dollar from the defendant, it just means that you may recover a lower compensation amount from the defendant simply because you were partially responsible for your injuries. However, it takes a very experienced attorney to argue that at the end of the day it was the driver of the vehicle rather than your responsibility to make sure they drove in a reasonably safe manner.
What kind of damages could I recover if I was a pedestrian who was hit by a car?
Usually, pedestrians most likely suffered severe injuries compared to the driver of the vehicle since the driver was protected by their car. Examples of damages that the pedestrian could recover include:
- Medical bills: this refers to the emergency room costs, hospital stay, prescription medication, physical therapy, etc.
- Wages: this refers to both the past lost wages and the future lost wages. If the pedestrian ends up suffering permanent disability, they most likely will be able to recover future lost wages, since they will not be able to return back to work and resume what they were doing prior to the accident.
- Emotional distress: a pedestrian who suffers severe injuries will most likely need compensation for their pain and suffering. It is very stressful to be experiencing a permanent injury that is changing your life forever.
How can I recover from my pedestrian accident injuries?
- Filing a claim with your insurance company
- Filing a claim against the driver of the vehicle for their own personal assets
- Filing a claim against the driver’s insurance company
How can our pedestrian accident attorneys help you?
Our attorneys will conduct in-depth investigations. We have several strong connections with accident investigators who will determine the specific details of the accident, such as how fast the car was driving at the time of the accident. Determining liability is very crucial in an accident where you have been jaywalking. You will need several experts that will talk about the effect of jaywalking, and how it may be minimal to the cause of your accident.
Pedestrian accidents will most likely result in severe injuries, that is why it is very important to have strong relationships with medical experts who will be able to testify and talk about how the victim’s life has changed.
Our car accident attorneys will communicate and deal with everything that the insurance company requires you to do. Insurance companies will want to get you alone in order to use a statement against you. During this time, it is important that you refrain from talking to the insurance company and let us do the work for you.
How much do our pedestrian accident attorneys’ cost?
Our attorneys work on a contingency basis, which means that we only get compensated if we win. We will not collect a single dollar unless we win a settlement or a judgment in your favor.
Contact Us Today for A Free Evaluation
If you have been a pedestrian who has been injured in an accident, contact Megeredchian law today to schedule a free consultation. Even if you believe you were partially at fault, do not let this stop you from contacting our attorneys. Our car accident attorneys are available 24/7 to answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding your case. Even if you think you may not even have a case against the at-fault party, we still encourage you to contact our attorneys to see what the best steps are.
Our award-winning attorneys are on standby and ready to assist you from the beginning of your legal claim till the end.
We have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients. We want to make sure that our clients are comfortable and understand all the steps associated with their legal claim. We will only be able to give you a straightforward response as to how much your pedestrian accident case is worth during our consultations.