The state of Texas has strict right-of-way laws. While many pedestrians assume that they always have the right of way, this is not always the case.
Following a pedestrian accident, whoever had the right of way at the time the incident occurred may be an important factor that affects liability. If liability is shared, then a claimant’s damages amount may be reduced.
If a traffic control signal displays the word or sign for ‘Walk,’ then the pedestrian has the right of way. The same goes for crosswalks where there is no traffic control signal; the operator of a vehicle is required to yield the right of way to the pedestrian.
If you had the right-of-way at the time that your accident occurred, then liability will most likely be very straightforward; the driver of the vehicle that hit you will probably be held responsible.
Pedestrians have right of way when traffic signals read ‘Walk’ at a crosswalk, they do not have the right of way when traffic signals read ‘Wait’ or ‘Don’t Walk.’ Furthermore, a pedestrian is required to yield the right of way to a vehicle when crossing at a point other than the crosswalk.
If you did not have the right of way at the time of your pedestrian accident, the liability of the other driver could be harder to prove. To hold the driver liable at all, you will have to demonstrate that the driver was negligent in another manner, i.e. was speeding, drinking while driving, was driving while distracted, etc.
In the event that the driver had the right of way but was also doing something negligent at the time of the accident, liability may be shared. In Texas, this is known as proportionate responsibility. The law reads that if the claimant is more than 50 percent at fault for the accident, then s/he cannot recover damages. One way you can prove that the motorist was engaged in illegal behavior at the time of the crash, you should grab an eyewitnesses’ contact information.
If you have more questions about the right of way and how the amount of your damage may be affected by Texas pedestrian and right-of-way laws, the attorneys at the Law Office of Julie Johnson, PLLC can help.
Following a pedestrian accident, it’s important to have an attorney on your side who can contribute to proving the liability of the at-fault party. To schedule your consultation a pedestrian accident attorney call us at 214-290-8001.