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Legal Representation for Victims of Accidents Caused by Pedestrians in Chicago

Scene of an AccidentWhen you take driver’s education, you are taught that the pedestrian has the right-of-way. This is often why some pedestrians feel safe enough to enter traffic, regardless of whether there are cars present. They assume that all vehicles will stop for them. However, does the right-of-way prevent a pedestrian from being liable if he or she were to cause a motor vehicle collision?

The answer is quite complex, and if you were involved in an accident because of a pedestrian, you may need to contact an attorney to explore your options.

Determining Fault in a Pedestrian-Automobile Accident

If a vehicle hits a pedestrian, it is not as easy to assign fault. It is not up to the witnesses, passengers, driver, or pedestrian. Instead, it is up to a judge, jury, or insurance claims adjuster to determine who was at fault for the incident.

These parties will have evidence in front of them which will help determine who was at fault, including police reports, witness statements, and expert testimony. If the driver is clearly at fault for the accident, the pedestrian can then file a lawsuit against that driver for compensation.

If, however, the pedestrian was at fault, the pedestrian cannot recover damages. Instead, the driver may be able to file a personal injury suit against the pedestrian for any harm experienced because of the accident.

Examples of When a Pedestrian May Be At-Fault

It is rare for a pedestrian to be found at-fault for a car accident, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t occur. There are certain scenarios that increase the likelihood that a pedestrian is at fault, including:

  • When a pedestrian jaywalks.
  • When the pedestrian enters the street while intoxicated.
  • When the pedestrian is walking along unauthorized strips of road, such as along the highway or on a bridge.
  • When the pedestrian crosses traffic against the posted traffic signal (i.e., there was no “walk” command posted).

Shared Fault

Typically, pedestrian accidents with motor vehicles involve shared fault. The state of Illinois has adopted the comparative negligence rule. This assigns responsibility to each party, and when both parties contributed to the accident, it determines who will receive compensation and how much will be received.

For example, a pedestrian was crossing the street without a proper signal to do so. The driver, who was not paying attention and was talking on the phone, struck the pedestrian. While the pedestrian should not have been on the road, the driver should not have been talking on the phone. The court would then determine how much each party was at fault. The party that was less at fault can collect damages, but only based on their percentage.

If the driver in this example was determined to be 25 percent at fault, while the pedestrian 75 percent at fault, then the driver’s settlement would be reduced by 25 percent to account for his or her own negligence.

Involved in an Automobile-Pedestrian Accident? Contact an Attorney

If you or a loved one was injured in an accident with an automobile or pedestrian, you need to contact an attorney right away. There are complex laws at play any time when a pedestrian is involved. Schedule a consultation now with the car accident team at Malman Law by calling us, or request your consultation appointment online.

Firm Awards & Recognitions

Steven Malman was selected to the list. The list is issued by the American Institute of Legal Counsel. A description of the selection methodology can be found at

  • Steven Malman was selected to the list. The list is issued by the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys. A description of the selection methodology can be found at

  • Steven Malman was selected to the list for 2018-2019.

  • Only the top 100 trial lawyers from each state or highly-populated regions of certain states who are actively practicing in civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense law are eligible for invitation. Invitees must demonstrate superior qualifications, leadership skills, and trial results as a legal professional. The selection process for this elite honor is based on a multi-phase process based upon objective and uniformly applied criteria which includes peer nominations combined with third party research.

    Prospective members of The NTL are carefully screened prior to receiving an invitation for membership.

  • Top Attorneys Diamond Member

  • Top Attorneys of North America 2019-2020

  • The American Institute of Trial Lawyers is an invitation only professional organization composed of premier trial attorneys from each state. These attorneys exemplify the very best qualities and qualifications of an attorney. Each attorney must meet stringent qualifications as a civil or criminal trial attorney. These attorneys practice in a variety of fields to help and promote the ethical and elite practice of law. Selection is based on a thorough multi phase process which includes peer nominations and third party research. Each member must be in good standing with their local compliance organization. Membership is extended to only a select few in each state and/or region.

  • As the founder of Steven J. Malman and Associates, P.C., Attorney Steven Malman has 21 years of experience handling personal injury, nursing home, medical malpractice, premises liability, construction and workers’ compensation cases. Mr. Malman is one of Chicago’s leading authorities on personal injury law and has taken a special interest in defending the elderly from neglect and abuse. He has personally handled over 10,000 cases successfully, and collected hundreds of millions dollars for his clients.

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