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Auto-pedestrian accidents: Who’s at fault

Determining Who Is At Fault In An Auto Accident

Because pedestrians and drivers share the roadways, what happens on them becomes everyone’s responsibility, especially when it comes to accidents. Florida operates under something called the pure comparative fault rule. According to the Claims Journal, this is where a court can assign negligence in an auto accident based on the percentage of fault.

This concept is fairly straightforward. If a person was hit by a car, the court would look at each party involved and may decide the pedestrian was 10 percent at fault due to not using a crosswalk, while the driver was at 90 percent fault for not obeying traffic laws. In this case, the pedestrian would pay 10 percent of the damages while the driver pays 90 percent. It is up to the court to make determinations and assign fault based upon evidence gathered at the scene and other testimony.

Under the 2016 Florida Statutes, being found even somewhat at fault does not prevent a person from collecting at least some damages in an accident. Damages can be monetary and/or nonmonetary, such as medical expenses, lost wages and restitution for property damage. Any cost that arises from the accident that would not have been incurred otherwise can be awarded. However, fault must be shown clearly through evidence.

For a pedestrian who has been hit by a vehicle, this means he or she may be liable for some of his or her expenses in an accident if he or she was not completely following all road laws and cannot prove 100 percent liability of the vehicle driver.