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For Auto Insurance, What Is a "Pedestrian"?

April 06, 2022
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In an Insurance Journal article, insurance expert Bill Wilson addresses this question. Since automobile insurance policies do not define "pedestrian" the answer is complicated.

Personal auto policies, and commercial policies with uninsured/underinsured motorist and personal injury protection will cover injuries to a "pedestrian". The question is whether a person in a wheelchair, on a bicycle/tricycle, skateboard or horseback is a pedestrian or whether they literally have to be on foot. 

Some statutes do define "pedestrian" in a broader sense, but they do not directly address auto insurance. Courts often refer to the dictionary which gives a narrow meaning, but some have found the word ambiguous. Having a policy definition could clear this up.