Can I File a Pedestrian Accident Claim if I Was Jaywalking?

shadows pedestrian sidewalk

Jaywalking is typically considered when a pedestrian walks across the street outside of a marked crosswalk or intersection. Continue reading to learn whether you can file a pedestrian accident claim if you were jaywalking and how one of the experienced Howard County pedestrian accident attorneys at Lloyd J. Eisenberg & Associates can help develop a course of action.

What are the laws surrounding jaywalking?

Generally speaking, it is illegal for a pedestrian to jaywalk in the state of Maryland. More specific laws surrounding jaywalking are as follows:

  • A pedestrian must not cross the street in the direction of a steady red traffic light, solid “don’t walk” signal, or solid “upraised hand” signal.
  • A pedestrian must not cross an adjacent intersection where a crosswalk and traffic control signal is provided.
  • A pedestrian must not walk along or on an adjacent street where a sidewalk is provided.
  • A pedestrian must not cross an intersection diagonally unless authorized by a traffic control device.

A violation of any of these laws may subject you to fines anywhere between $40 to $500. What’s worse, not following pedestrian safety may lead to your involvement in an accident.

How do I file a pedestrian accident claim if I was jaywalking?

Due to the state of Maryland’s contributory negligence law, it may be difficult to file a pedestrian accident claim if you were jaywalking. This is because the law holds that an injured party may be barred from recovering their damages if they contributed to the accident in any way.

However, you may be able to argue that your jaywalking did not contribute to your accident or contributed as little as one percent. For example, a driver (i.e., truck driver, standard motor vehicle driver, motorcyclist, or bicyclist) may be almost entirely at fault for your accident if they were found to be violating a traffic rule.

In addition to a driver, you may also argue that a state, county, or city-owned entity was a majority to blame. This is relevant if a traffic control device was faulty, the marked crosswalk was covered in snow, ice, or debris, etc.

When should I file a pedestrian accident claim?

To even have a chance of receiving financial compensation, you must not hesitate to file your pedestrian accident claim. That is, the state of Maryland’s statute of limitations is typically three years from the date on which your accident occurred. If your legal action is against a state, county, or city entity, you also must submit your claim within one year from when you incurred your injury.

You should not have to go through your personal injury claim proceedings alone. Instead, you should seek the assistance of one of the skilled Howard County auto accident attorneys from Lloyd J. Eisenberg & Associates. Contact our firm today.

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