What Happens If You Hit a Pedestrian in Canada?

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Accidents involving pedestrians can occur for a variety of reasons. You may hit a pedestrian unintentionally while speeding, drunk driving, texting/ talking on the phone, or recklessly driving. You may have seen such accidents on the news. So, what happens if you hit a pedestrian in Canada?

The course of events following a pedestrian-motor vehicle or car collision can alter based on the severity of the impact. You might have to go through a legal process to provide the harmed person with the compensation they deserve.

Or, if you believe you have enough evidence against the pedestrian to substantiate your innocence in the accident, you might also choose to oppose the lawsuit.

This article will teach you what you should do if you hit a pedestrian in Canada.

Table of Contents

What Happens If You Hit a Pedestrian in Canada and What Should You Do?

After you hit a pedestrian, there are several possible outcomes; he may have minor or severe injuries. A lot of individuals are shocked by the situation. They leave the area because it is often said that they will be apprehended if they stay.

But the appropriate way of handling such a situation is a bit different. You need to bear the following things in mind.

Help the pedestrian to seek medical help

If you lose control of your car and hit a pedestrian, the first thing you should do is to check the severity of the injury. Instead of leaving the scene, you should stay to help the injured pedestrian to get medical attention.

Call 911 or any emergency number in your area. The police will come with emergency medical help as soon as possible. And if the injury is less severe, you should take the pedestrian to the hospital yourself.

Collect the evidence of the scene

You should not move the injured person if the collision has caused massive damage and severe injury. Any sudden movement can worsen the wound even more. It would be best if you waited for the police or medical professionals to come to the spot and examine the victim.

In the meantime, you should take pictures of the scene to collect evidence. Nevertheless, it would be best if you also talked to the witnesses.

Collect a police report copy

After officially making a police report, you should also collect a copy. Most of the time, the report is made by the injured party. But you should order the police report to ensure the pedestrian cannot make false accusations.

Inform your insurer to make a claim:

It would be best if you informed your insurer about the incident. If you are liable for the accident, you should make the necessary preparation to give the injured pedestrian the accident benefits they deserve.

However, on the flip side, you can also claim compensation when the pedestrian is at fault.

Who is Liable in a Pedestrian Accident?

The provincial government of every Canadian city, such as Toronto or Ontario, encourages residents to choose cycling or walking to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Even though there are sidewalks for pedestrians and everyone tries to wander while following the rules of the road, accidents occur.

Since pedestrians are mostly defenceless in such an accident, you may think that the driver is at-fault without any doubt. Negligence of the vehicle’s driver is one of the main reasons behind such accidents, but the accident can still occur even when both the pedestrian and the driver follow all the rules.

Therefore, a victim’s lawyer’s primary goal is to prove that the driver was negligent. But the reverse onus is also included in the Highway Traffic Act of Canada.

How to prove a party guilty?

If the motorist or car driver can demonstrate enough evidence that they acted appropriately, the status states that they will not be utterly guilty of negligence. Therefore, it could be challenging for the injured party to succeed in their accident claim.

The reverse onus allows the drivers to prove their innocence or explain the situation from the other end. Moreover, the insurance company that will pay the compensation for the victim’s damages tries to find evidence and witnesses. They put their utmost effort into winning the case and lowering the compensation money.

For example, if the driver enters a road from a private driveway, turning left or right from a sidewalk, they will yield the right of way.

What does the law say about it?

In Ontario, another section is also included that is referred to as the pedestrian right of way. The section explains the scenario in which the injured pedestrian will have the upper hand and have a higher chance of winning the case.

They are as follows:

  • The driver will be liable if the pedestrian crosses the road at a crossover. He is responsible for watching out for a crossover, stopping, and driving again when the pedestrian is on the other side of the road.
  • When the passenger crosses the road following the traffic lights, and an accident occurs, the pedestrian will have the right of way. The pedestrian will not hold responsible even if the traffic light changes in a middle way.

Therefore, if the pedestrian maintains the law while walking on the road and hits them, you will be responsible for the accident.

What Happens If You Hit a Pedestrian Jaywalking?

Jaywalking in the middle of the road without a crosswalk is common in Canada since the foot traffic is getting high. And it is a common question that everyone has in their mind—if you hit a jaywalker, who is at fault in Canada?

Let’s take a look at the Highway Traffic Act. Section 144(2) states that it is illegal if a pedestrian jaywalks without a crosswalk. But the pedestrian will not be at-fault if the crosswalk is marked within 30 meters from where he is jaywalking.

Check Also: Pedestrian Crossing Sign: Know Everything

What are the possible factors that lead to a pedestrian accident?

Several factors are responsible for such accidents. Before discussing what will happen after the accident, let us inform you of the factors responsible.

  • Speeding:

When driving at high speed, the driver can’t stop the vehicle right away if a person suddenly appears in front of it.

  • Failing to yield:

While crossing the road or jaywalking, the driver may fail to notice the pedestrian and hit them. Being inattentive to the road or any distraction can cause such an incident.

  • Passenger disobeying traffic signal:

Accidents might happen if any passenger crosses the road in mid-block or without any crossroad. Sometimes, passengers are physically disabled, use wheelchairs, canes, or walkers, and cannot always follow the signal. And most of the time, they are injured in pedestrian-motor vehicles or car accidents.

  • Narcotics or Alcohol intoxication:

Drunk driving is another leading cause because the fatality rate is increasing. So, before driving when drunk, think of what will happen if I run someone over?

  • Male drivers:

Studies have shown that male drivers often increase their driving speed, which causes accidents.

  • Senior citizens:

Senior citizens with visual impairment are often at high risk of getting involved in such accidents.

What are the Claims You May Have to Face from the Injured Pedestrian?

Depending on the injuries, an injured passenger may ask for compensation. The injuries can be as follows:

1. Severe injuries:

2. Less-severe injuries:

  • Spine injuries
  • Bone fractures
  • Sprains

Receiving treatment and getting healed usually requires a lot of time. At the same time, the therapy is often expensive. Therefore, you may face no-fault accident benefits after hitting a pedestrian.

They are:

  • Income replacement benefit
  • Lost wages
  • Caregiver benefits for future care
  • Medical Benefits for treatment and medicine
  • Rehabilitation and maintenance expenses

The pedestrian-motor vehicle or car accidents are always complicated cases to solve. Therefore, if you face any situation like this, contact a personal injury lawyer who is an expert in this field.

What is the Average Settlement in Pedestrian Hit by Car Cases in Canada:

The hit-by-car average compensation in Canada can vary depending on the calculable expenses and pain and suffering.

After assessing the medical reports and hearing the lawyers from both sides, the court will decide on an accident settlement. The amount is negotiable if the at-fault party wants to settle the case outside the court.

However, in both cases, the settlement money ranges from $6000 to $3,70,000.

Why You Need a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer?

Although it is possible to negotiate a settlement on your own, a lawyer has more expertise in negotiating settlements through the legal system. Additionally, they will highlight things like lost income and suffering and pain. In the end, the lawyer relieves you of the burden of bargaining so you may concentrate on recovering.

You need a lawyer with expertise in personal injury law, but you also need one who has expertise in accidents involving pedestrians. Although a personal injury lawyer can handle a variety of situations, someone with experience in pedestrian accidents will be familiar with the rules that apply specifically to those injuries.


You should better understand the situation and know what might occur if you hit a pedestrian in Canada. The likelihood of serious injuries is high since pedestrians are in the most vulnerable position in an accident. The best way to avoid such incidents is to drive cautiously.

However, it would be best if you also obey the laws of the roads. According to the studies, there is a traffic rule violation before every accident involving a motor vehicle and a pedestrian. To prevent situations like this, be alert while driving.


What happens if you hit a pedestrian jaywalking in Canada?

Even if you hit someone jaywalking, you still have to pay the compensation. The compensation money will depend on the severity of the injury. You will be held liable because of your ignorance while driving.

Can a pedestrian be at fault in Canada?

In Canada, a pedestrian can be to blame, but the car's driver must prove that the pedestrian was careless and disobeyed the law when crossing the road.

How much money can you get from getting hit by a car as a pedestrian in Alberta?

Depending on the complexity of the injuries, a pedestrian may be entitled to compensation ranging from $15000 to $75,000. The government of Canada has taken this initiative, and the cases are strictly solved with appropriate attention to the victim.

What happens if you hit a pedestrian and they walk away?

If you hit a pedestrian and he walks away, you may think he is not injured. However, you should still stop your vehicle and offer to help. A motor vehicle accident injury may not seem serious at first. But the injured person still needs to seek medical attention. Moreover, it would be best to inform your insurer about what happened.



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