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Written by: J. Todd Tenge

Involved in a Pedestrian Accident—Who Is Liable in Colorado?

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pedestrian accident liability

No one expects to go for a walk and get into an accident.

However, it does happen every day across Colorado.

While you might assume that the motorist is at fault, that isn’t always the case.

Pedestrian accident liability varies in every accident, depending on the circumstances of the accident.

If you or someone you love sustained injuries in a pedestrian accident caused by another party, contact a Colorado personal injury lawyer at Tenge Law Firm.

Determining Pedestrian Accident Liability in Colorado

Every accident requires a thorough liability investigation before anyone can say with any certainty who is at fault.

Negligence requires proof of four elements. Failure to prove even one of the four elements means you won’t receive compensation.

These elements are:

  • The defendant owed you some legal duty;
  • The defendant breached their duty to you;
  • The defendant’s breach is what caused the accident and your injuries; and
  • You suffered damages because of the defendant’s actions.

Proving liability may sound easy, but it’s much more complicated than you realize.

Pedestrians don’t owe drivers the same care standard as other motorists. Pedestrians and motorists each have different laws they must follow.

However, the overall premise of proving the four elements of negligence remains the same.  

The defendant’s insurance company will fight vigorously against your liability position, even if you have proof.

The other claims adjuster’s priority is to deny your claim or find a way to show your liability is at least 50%.

You need a legal advocate on your side who can help you build a strong case.

When Is a Pedestrian At-Fault for a Car Accident?

Many assume that a pedestrian is never at fault because they always have the right of way.

However, a pedestrian’s actions could lead to them being partially responsible for an accident. A pedestrian who runs out between cars, especially on a busy highway, could be partly responsible.

The driver won’t likely have a chance to stop and avoid the pedestrian, even when driving defensively.

Pedestrians who cross in non-designated crosswalks might also be partially responsible for the accident.

Crossing in any scenario where you don’t have the right of way opens the door to partial liability.

Determining pedestrian fault in a car accident is not necessarily easy. You need a skilled lawyer on your side to help you investigate who is liable for your injuries.

Modified Comparative Fault in Colorado

Colorado follows the legal theory of negligence known as modified comparative negligence.

You can be partially liable for an accident and still collect some of your damages. However, if your fault is equal to or greater than the other party’s, you would receive nothing.

When your percentage of fault is less than 50%, you will receive a proportionate amount of your damages.

For example, imagine a pedestrian is at-fault in a car accident. If the pedestrian is 10% at fault, they will receive 90% of their damages.

If their percentage of liability is 60%, they will receive no money. In fact, in the second situation, the driver could pursue a claim for 60% of their damages.

How a Colorado Accident Lawyer Can Help

Many pedestrian accidents occur due to distracted driving or speeding. That doesn’t mean that pedestrians can’t ever be at fault.

Pedestrian accident liability is more common than you may realize. However, proving it requires a thorough independent investigation.

When you hire Tenge Law Firm to represent you, we will gather all evidence, speak to witnesses, and more.

We will also handle all communication with the other party and their insurance company or lawyer.

It may be necessary to hire one or more experts as well. You may need an accident reconstructionist to review the details and research how the accident occurred.

Another expert might be necessary for a severe injury accident where you need assistance determining what your lifelong medical care and disability are worth.

Contact a Colorado Accident Lawyer

If you were involved in a pedestrian accident where you believe the other party has the greatest percentage of fault, contact Tenge Law Firm.

We understand how complicated pedestrian accidents can be, and we want to help.

Tenge Law Firm differs from other personal injury law firms you may have spoken with already.

We don’t take every case or try to settle right away so we can move on to the next one. With Tenge Law Firm, you will receive the boutique law firm service you deserve.

Contact our offices today to schedule a consultation to learn more about how we can help.

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