According to Connecticut law, pedestrians have the right of way when walking across a street in a crosswalk, on public and private sidewalks, and on roads and highways. But what happens when a jaywalking pedestrian is struck by an automobile?
Similar to motorists, pedestrians have a duty of care to look out for oncoming vehicles and act carefully towards them. This means that a pedestrian jaywalking in the street would not exercise a reasonable duty of care. A driver who sees a jaywalking pedestrian could slam on their brakes, potentially causing a more severe car accident by attempting to avoid an individual crossing the street illegally. So a pedestrian who fails to exercise a reasonable standard of care under the circumstances may be considered negligent.
Keep in mind, Connecticut has a modified comparative negligence law where the plaintiff can recover as long as he or she is not more at fault than the other party (not 51 percent or more). In accidents involving jaywalkers and motor vehicles, often both parties can be considered negligent. For example, the pedestrian jaywalks walking while the driver is traveling in excess of the posted speed limit. The insurance companies and/or court can determine each party’s percentage of fault and how much each party can recover from the accident.
In order to sort this all out, injured pedestrians and drivers may want to seek professional legal advice from an experienced personal injury attorney. A lawyer can evaluate the accident, examine the evidence, and determine all of the legal options.