Broker Check

For Auto Insurance, What Is a "Pedestrian"?

April 06, 2022

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.