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Not So Fast

May 10, 2024

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Have you ever walked in a bicycle lane? Even just to cross the road? Walking or even being in a bicycle lane sounds like a bad idea. Not only is there a high chance of getting hit by a bicycle, but possibly a car too. Plaintiff in William G. Galloway v. Lux Credit Consultants, LLC, et al. would probably agree after he sustained injuries while walking in a bicycle lane after being hit by a car owned and operated by Defendants.

 

Naturally, the Defendants moved for summary judgment and blamed the entirety of the accident on the Plaintiff. They argued that the alleged accident was solely and proximately caused by Plaintiff because he was walking in the bicycle lane. Admittedly, he was standing in the bicycle lane to cross the road. Defendants claimed there was no fault of their own and that judgment should be found in their favor as a matter of law. With no proximate causation on their end, the burden of proving negligence would arguably be impossible. Kings County Supreme Court agreed and dismissed Defendants from the case.

 

“Not so fast,” said the Appellate Division, Second Department on appeal. The court stated that there could be more than one proximate cause for the accident. Unless it is so clear that there was only one cause, the issue of proximate causation is a question for the jury. The Court held that Defendants’ evidence in support of their motion for summary judgment, when viewed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, failed to eliminate all triable issues of fact as to whether the Defendant driver was free from fault in the happening of the accident.

 

After all, getting injured by simply standing or walking in the bicycle lane does not mean you’re at fault automatically. It’s a bad idea, but there are other reasons why an accident could occur. Be careful and stay in your lane!


Galloway v. Lux
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