You are here

What is Comparative Negligence?

When a person is injured due to the negligence of another party, a personal injury claim is quite beneficial for the injured person as it not only helps him or her to pay medical and other bills but also provides an opportunity to recover other damages resulting from the injury. Many states however, have what are known as “comparative negligence” laws, that affect the amount of compensation that is awarded in a personal injury case.

Explaining Comparative Negligence Law

A lot of states tend to practice the comparative negligence law. Typically, when these laws are in effect, the amount of compensation is reduced by the percentage of fault the injured party shares in the accident. Two basic stances of comparative negligence laws have been adopted:

  1. Pure Comparative Negligence:

    The injured person’s amount of compensation is reduced by the percentage of his or her partial fault in the accident. A person seeking damages of $10,000 will only get $7,500 if he or she is proved to be at a fault of 25%.
  2. Modified Comparative Negligence:

    With modified comparative fault, the claimant’s compensation is still reduced by the percentage of his or her fault in the accident. However, if he or she shares 50% or more of the fault in the accident, he or she is barred from recovering any damages.

How an Attorney Can Assist?

An attorney can be extremely helpful in a personal injury case by assisting in a number of situations like:

  • Dealing with the insurer of the negligent party
  • Acquiring health information from medical experts
  • Securing all medical records and bills
  • Locating evidence that could aid in availing the claim
  • Negotiating settlements that both parties agree upon

Having a personal injury attorney can undoubtedly be extremely helpful when settling your personal injury claim.