Tuesday, January 15, 2013

How the Injured Party Can Also Be Partially at Fault in an Accident

Los Angeles Car Accident Lawer | Personal Injury Attorney

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Probably the most crucial part of any personal injury accident claim is determining fault. Usually, the one at fault for the accident is the one who is considered negligent. In tort law, a negligent person in a personal injury case must compensate the victim for the damages that he or she caused the latter. But then, in many jurisdictions, it is not always the negligent person who is to accept all the blame for a personal injury accident.

In some accident claims, there are situations in which sole liability is indeterminable. As it is, the two parties, the injured party and the defendant, may have shared the fault for a certain accident. In such circumstances, fault will be allocated between the parties involved through the state statutes of comparative and contributory negligence.

About contributory negligence

In this statute, the injured party who is found partially at fault for the accident may not be entitled to receive compensation to recover from the losses he or she incurred. The States of Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia, along with the nation’s capital, has this kind of statute.

To illustrate an example, imagine Driver A’s colliding with Driver B’s car after the former made a left turn on a dark part of the intersection. Driver A is automatically at fault because of hitting Driver B. However, the latter was found out to have not been using headlights while driving. With contributory negligence factored in, Driver B won’t be entitled to recover losses because he or she was considered partially at fault for the accident.

About comparative negligence

If contributory negligence seems to be a harsh kind of statute, comparative negligence is deemed a more proportionate one. In this statute, the injured party partially at fault for an accident may be able to recover from the damages that he or she incurred. Pure comparative negligence is one of the negligence theory’s many types.

In pure comparative negligence, the damage recovery of a person partially at fault is reduced by the percentage of his or her fault. Going back to the previous example, if Person B is determined 80 percent at fault and that the total amount of damages is $10,000.00, he or she will only receive $2,000.00. The State of California is one of the 13 states that adopt this negligence theory.

Retaining legal representation

Retaining a Los Angeles personal injury lawyers is the best thing to do if a person is injured because of someone else’s negligence. Apart from that, the expertise of the legal representative would help in determining whether the plaintiff is partially at fault for the accident as stated in the negligence statutes.


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