What Happens With Your Car Insurance If You Hit a Pedestrian?
If you get into an accident with another car, you probably already have a general idea of how things will work with your insurance. You’ll trade insurance information with the other party, and your insurance companies will work together to determine who is at fault and which insurance company will pay the damages. However, if you hit a pedestrian, things are a little less cut-and-dry. Here’s how your car insurance works if you hit a pedestrian.
Liability Insurance Covers Pedestrian Damages
Everyone is required to have liability insurance in order to drive. This liability insurance will provide coverage for the pedestrian if you are found to be at fault. This means that the insurance will cover their medical bills, lost wages, and any other relevant damages. This also applies to cyclists. If you hit a cyclist and are found to be at fault, your insurance will likely pay for damages to their bike as well as medical bills.
However, it’s important to remember that your insurance will only pay for damages up to your coverage limit. For example, if you have $30,000 of coverage, but the pedestrian you hit has $40,000 of medical bills, you will be responsible for paying the additional $10,000 out of pocket. This is why it’s a smart idea to invest in more liability insurance than your state legally requires.
Collision and Comprehensive Insurance Cover Your Damages
If you hit a pedestrian and you experience damages, collision and comprehensive insurance coverage can pay for them. Drivers are not legally required to have collision or comprehensive insurance, but it is highly encouraged. This type of insurance essentially guarantees that you will be covered if your car is damaged, regardless of who was at fault. If you get hurt in a collision with a pedestrian, medical payments coverage or personal injury protection coverage can pay for your damages. It’s less common for the driver to be injured in a crash with a pedestrian, but it still can happen, and it’s important to be prepared.
Are There Any Instances Where Insurance Won’t Pay for Pedestrian Damages?
Many people are surprised to find out that pedestrians can still be found at fault in a crash. When this happens, the insurance company is not responsible for paying their damages. If there is damage to your car, your insurance company can opt to pursue the pedestrian to pay for the damages, although they often choose not to. If your insurance company doesn’t ask the pedestrian to pay for the damages, you could end up paying for them out of pocket (unless you have collision insurance).
Pedestrians can be found at fault in a number of situations. One of the most common is jaywalking outside of a crosswalk or trying to cross a highway. They can also be found at fault for walking against the light or walking at night while wearing dark clothing, which would make them very difficult to see. Cyclists can be found at fault for not following the flow of traffic or weaving in and out of cars. Both pedestrians and cyclists can also be found partially at fault for an accident, which means that both the car and the pedestrian took actions that contributed to the accident. In this instance, your insurance will need to pay for a specific percentage of the pedestrian’s damages. Your car insurance company will assign you each a percentage of fault – for example, you may be 60 percent at fault and the pedestrian is 40 percent at fault. When this happens, your car insurance will be responsible for paying 60 percent of the pedestrian’s damages. If you don’t agree with the fault determinations your insurance company gives you, you can choose to contest them.
Will My Car Insurance Cover Me If I’m a Pedestrian and I Get Hit?
If you are walking and you get hit by a car, your car insurance may pay for your damages. Traditional liability coverage won’t pay for this, but if you have personal injury protection coverage or medical payments coverage, your insurance company will usually shoulder the financial responsibility. Uninsured motorist coverage can also pay for your medical bills if the driver does not have enough liability insurance to cover the damages. Some states require you to have personal injury protection coverage, but it’s not mandatory in most parts of the US. If you get hit by a car, be sure to talk to your insurance company to see what sort of coverage you can get.
What Should I Do If I Get Into an Accident With a Pedestrian?
When an accident like this happens, the first thing to do is stop and call 911 if there are any serious injuries. You should also call the police, as you’ll need to get a police statement for your insurance. Put your hazard lights on so that oncoming traffic knows to avoid you, and move your car off to the side of the road if you can. Take pictures of the accident scene, and if there are any witnesses, get their contact information. You should also trade insurance information with the pedestrian involved in the accident if they are able. All of these things are crucial to helping your insurance company make an appropriate decision about the fault of the accident. No matter what, do not admit that you were at fault, as this can hurt your case later on. Once you get home, report the accident to your insurance company right away – the sooner they know, the sooner they can help you.
To avoid accidents like this, always keep an eye out for pedestrians and cyclists, even in unexpected places. When you’re a pedestrian, follow the rules of the road and be cautious when crossing streets. Car insurance coverage can be tricky for pedestrian accidents, but in most cases, your liability coverage will step in and provide the coverage you need if you’re found at fault for the accident.