Featured News 2019 Contributory & Comparative Negligence Laws

Contributory & Comparative Negligence Laws

The best way to make your situation better is to avoid driving on your license at all costs. If you have a network of family and friends, try to rely on them for rides. If you have a car, lending it to a family or friend could be a great way to incentivize them into driving you places. Additionally, not having your car will help you avoid the temptation of driving it when you should not.

If you rely on your car for work, some states allow those with suspended licenses to drive a vehicle to or from work during operating hours. Finally, utilize public transportation, taxis, or ridesharing apps such as Uber or Lyft if economically possible.

Contributory & Comparative Negligence Laws

If someone is claiming another party is responsible for your injuries and is seeking compensation for damages, then they must prove that the other party is at fault. However, some states have laws that play a major role in personal injury cases. Contributory and comparative negligence laws might change the amount of damages a party owes to the other at the end of a trial. These laws limit liability if a person was fully or partially at fault for their injuries.

Comparative Negligence

Comparative negligence means that a damaged party can obtain reparations even if they were partially at fault for the incident. In some states, an individual can collect damages even if they are deemed to be 99 percent at fault for an accident.

Contributory Negligence

In states with contributory negligence laws, plaintiffs are not allowed to collect damages if they are at fault for the accident in any percentage. Only Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and Washing D.C. still use contributory negligence.

When is Someone Partially at Fault for Their Injuries?

A person is at fault for their injuries for the same reasons another party would be: negligence. For example, if a person decides to walk through a dangerous pathway which is clearly marked with warning, they would be at fault for any injuries incurred from their decision. However, if a person was obeying all traffic laws when they were injured by a vehicle, they would not be at fault for their injuries.

A person is partially at fault for their injuries if their injuries resulted from the negligence of another person but also happened because of their own decisions. For example, if two people were involved in a car accident, comparative negligence laws may assign a percentage of blame to each person. This percentage of fault is determined by a court and is used to determine a final settlement amount. So, if a person is awarded a settlement, but was determined to be 10 percent responsible for an accident, the plaintiff will keep 10 percent of the settlement.

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