Liability for Pedestrian Accidents in Florida: Can You Get Compensated?

Florida’s no-fault laws require every driver to carry personal injury protection (PIP) offering up to $10,000 coverage for financial losses, such as medical bills or lost wages. In the case of an accident, your Florida PIP policy will be activated, even if you’re injured as a pedestrian. 

However, injuries from a pedestrian accident can often be serious and resulting expenses can be high. That is why you should consider taking additional steps to recover financial losses and reimbursement for pain and suffering. But who is liable? 

Determining negligence

Liability refers to any legal responsibility, duty, or obligation. In order to prove liability, you must be able to demonstrate negligence on the part of the driver or other party. 

Negligence means that the party owed you a “duty of care,” that the party breached that duty of care, that the breach of duty caused you injury or harm, and that the harm is real and demonstrable. Possible ways drivers can breach their duty of care include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Texting while driving
  • Speeding
  • Driving while drunk or under the influence of drugs
  • Running a red light or stoplight
  • Not yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Breaking laws of driving 

Additional parties at fault could include the municipality in which the accident occurred for poorly maintained roads or sidewalks; a construction company for blocking the crosswalk; a restaurant whose outside tables block the sidewalk; manufacturers for faulty products that may have been a factor in the accident; and others. 

I ask my clients detailed questions to determine any factors that may have complicated the situation that led to the accident. 

Pedestrian fault

Even if the pedestrian is partly at fault, you may be able to still collect damages. Possible ways a pedestrian can be at fault include:

 Not walking on available crosswalks

  • Not walking on available sidewalks
  • Crossing the street on a diagonal
  • Walking on the wrong side of the road (i.e., not facing traffic)
  • Walking on bridges or highways that prohibit pedestrian traffic
  • Walking distracted, such as wearing headphones or looking at a cell phone 

Florida follows the pure comparative negligence standard, meaning that a judge or jury will apportion fault in a case and award damages accordingly. 

Possible injuries

Pedestrian injuries are often more serious and more long-term than injuries from car accidents because of the lack of protection. Even an injury in a parking lot when cars are moving slowly can lead to serious injuries. Some injuries include traumatic brain injury, neck injury, back injury, fractures, lacerations, paralysis, loss of limbs, and death.

You can get reimbursement and compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Funeral expenses
  • Permanent disability
  • Loss of consortium (loss of a spouse) 

Wherever you are in Florida, if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident as a pedestrian, contact me at (954)448-7288 for a free, no obligation consultation to see how I can help you.

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