The entire Los Angeles and Orange County areas are teeming with pedestrians, talking on the phone, walking their dogs, jogging, and even filming TikToks. It can be difficult for drivers to focus on maneuvering their cars while watching out for all potential dangers when driving through highly populated areas.

While drivers are in larger vehicles, they understand the severity of damage that will happen if they hit someone, so they try to be as careful as possible. However, a car is much harder to control and maneuver than a pedestrian who has full control of where, when, and if they choose to enter the street.

Some drivers may even argue that pedestrians have more responsibility in keeping themselves safe than drivers do.

It begs the question: is a pedestrian ever at fault when they are hit by a car?

There are obvious situations where the driver is in the wrong when they hit someone. These include tragic cases of distracted driving and driving while intoxicated. If the driver that hit you was committing either of these acts of negligence, then you should contact our pedestrian accident lawyers in Newport Beach.

California has shared fault laws, meaning that the actions of both parties are examined. Pedestrians can be found at fault, or partially at fault, in the event that they act with negligence. Some examples of times where the pedestrian is partially responsible for an accident include:

  • Jaywalking
  • Disobeying a traffic signal (for example, walking across the street while the sign displays a red “Do Not Walk” command)
  • Walking onto a roadway or highway while intoxicated
  • Walking on highways, bridges, or causeways where pedestrian access is prohibited

In the event that there’s evidence of pedestrian negligence, it’s important to hire a bodily injury lawyer in Newport Beach with a vast knowledge of shared fault laws.

California follows the law of pure comparative negligence, meaning that each party has to pay based on how responsible they are for the accident. Each party is given a percentage of responsibility for the accident. The percentage of fault they have is equal to the percentage of damages they have to pay for.

For example, if you were jaywalking downtown and a drunk driver hit you with their car, you are partially responsible since you were not at a crosswalk. In this example, you may be assigned 20% of the fault and the drunk driver was assigned 80% of the fault. If the damages from the accident were $100,000, you would only be liable for $20,000 worth of the damages.