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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger II

What Happens If You Hit a Pedestrian Jaywalking in Ohio? | Schuerger Shunnarah

When it comes to traffic accidents involving pedestrians, Ohio law places emphasis on traffic control signals and designated pedestrian crossings.

If a passerby decides to jaywalk – that is, cross the street outside marked zones – they're entering an area where traffic rules take center stage. In such cases, both the driver and passersby are crucial players. The duty to yield the right-of-way falls on the motor vehicle operator, who must exercise reasonable care.

They also must keep a close eye on oncoming traffic. The scenario becomes even more complex when streets lack road signals or marked crosswalks.

Who Is Liable in a Pedestrian Accident According to Ohio Traffic Laws?

Who Is Liable in a Pedestrian Accident According to Ohio Traffic Laws?

Suppose a driver finds themselves in the unfortunate situation of colliding with a pedestrian. In that case, Ohio law needs them to adhere to the speed limit, exercise caution, and be aware of emergency vehicles.

Negligent drivers who fail to meet these standards may face legal repercussions. The law may also suspend and remove their license while imposing hefty fines. Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can advise on questions like Do pedestrians always have the right of way in Ohio?


However, the scenario shifts when jaywalking enters the equation. The responsibility for a pedestrian accident may tilt towards the jaywalker if they're walking on an unmarked crosswalk or without adhering to traffic lights.

Distracted Walking

The era of smartphones has introduced a new layer of complexity to pedestrian accidents. Distraction is a two-way street. A jaywalking pedestrian engaged in their cell phone may be somewhat liable if their distraction contributes to a crash.

On the other hand, drivers must also remain alert, especially in areas with high pedestrian traffic. Distracted driving is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents in the Buckeye State.


Intoxication, whether from alcohol or other substances, greatly impacts liability in car accidents. Both drivers and pedestrians are responsible for avoiding impairment while on the road. If a jaywalking pedestrian is drunk and their actions contribute to a car accident, they may share liability. Similarly, impaired drivers face legal consequences for their role in such incidents.


Also, disobeying traffic laws is a clear red flag regarding liability in car accident cases. It doesn't matter if the case involves not obeying traffic signals or ignoring a designated pedestrian crossing. Actions that violate established traffic rules can shift the responsibility towards the party at fault.

Knowing when to yield the right-of-way is important for pedestrians and drivers to ensure the safety of everyone on Ohio roads.

Seeking Legal Help for Pedestrian Accidents

Legal professionals specializing in car accident lawsuits play a vital role. They can help victims understand their rights and available options.

From the moment they take on an Ohio car crash case, these attorneys work to ensure their clients understand the legal process. They act as advocates. Pedestrian injury attorneys in Cincinnati provide clarity on potential courses of action. They empower injured pedestrians with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions.

Negotiating with Agencies

Insurance corporations also come into play. The car crash dynamics may involve negotiations with the insurance company. In this event, both sides present their perspectives on the incident.

The process revolves around determining fault. It also highlights the importance of evidence. This includes witness accounts, traffic camera footage, and the state of traffic lights during the crash. In short, the meticulous approach builds a strong case that stands up to scrutiny in legal proceedings. It ensures the victim has a robust foundation for their claim.

Proving Liability

A qualified lawyer can determine the plaintiff's degree of fault in the accident. They can help them recover compensation. Their expertise can also prove who failed to yield the right-of-way in the pedestrian crash.

When Can a Driver Sue a Pedestrian?

To sue a pedestrian for a car accident in Ohio, a driver must establish the passerby was negligent, which further played a significant role in causing the crash. Common scenarios where a motorist might consider legal action against a pedestrian include:

  • Jaywalking on unmarked lanes.

  • Disregarding traffic signals and rules.

  • Actions violating traffic laws.

Successfully suing a pedestrian involves gathering evidence that demonstrates their negligence. This can include eyewitness accounts, surveillance footage, or other documents. The evidence must show the pedestrian's actions leading up to the accident. Also, the burden of proof lies with the driver, and a thorough and well-documented case is essential.

However, it may be difficult for the motorist to secure a large settlement amount from the accused passerby if they lack insurance coverage. Instead, the automobilist will have to notify their insurance company for compensation.

When Do Pedestrians Have to Yield the Right-of-way?

Passersby must yield the right-of-way when walking outside designated zones. Nevertheless, within the painted confines of a crosswalk, the tables turn, and pedestrians rightfully claim the right-of-way. It's a mutual agreement. All drivers yield outside the crosswalk, and pedestrians yield to vehicles within.

What Is Ohio's Modified Comparative Fault Doctrine?

What Is Ohio's Modified Comparative Fault Doctrine?

This theory specifies liability and compensation when many parties share responsibility for an accident. The crux lies in determining whether a party is more or less than 50% at fault.

In cases where a party is less than 50% at fault, they can seek compensation for damages incurred. However, if their responsibility surpasses the 50% threshold, the court removes their right to recover damages.

If a pedestrian is partially at fault for the accident – for instance, due to jaywalking or other contributory actions – the compensation they receive is lessened according to their level of responsibility. This transparency ensures a just outcome. It also encourages responsible behavior on the part of pedestrians and drivers, promoting road safety. Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can advise on the average settlement for a pedestrian hit by a car.

Final Words

Paying attention to the road is a responsibility all Americans share. However, when the unfortunate happens, the legal path forward involves thoroughly examining the circumstances.

Consulting with professionals like Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can provide the clarity and guidance needed to navigate this journey towards resolution. Its commitment to transparency and education ensures clients involved in such incidents know how to make the right decisions. Plus, plaintiffs can take advantage of free consultation sessions before hiring an attorney.

Stating, "We Go to War for You," the lawyers at this firm can help victims move forward after securing maximum reimbursement.


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