Most personal injury actions are based on the theory of negligence. However, sometimes, the victim’s actions are partially to blame for their injuries. In such instances, the damages award might be reduced according to the victim’s liability. This is referred to as comparative negligence and, in this defense, the court compares the level of negligence exhibited by the plaintiff and the defendant. These personal injury cases can be quite complex, and should be handled by personal injury lawyers in Miamisburg, OH.
Examples of Comparative Negligence
A very common example of comparative negligence is where a jaywalking pedestrian is hit by a car. In this case, the driver may be liable, but the pedestrian may share the blame because they acted negligently. The victim’s damages would be reduced by their liability percentage. If a jury finds the victim 15% to blame for the injury, their damages would be reduced by that amount.
Different Comparative Negligence Categories
As previously mentioned, there are multiple varieties of comparative negligence. In areas allowing such cases, one of these three categories may be applied: pure, modified 51% fault and modified 50% fault. Clients can get more information below.
* Pure: The plaintiff may recover damages even if they are 99% responsible.
* Modified 51%: The plaintiff may only recover if they have the same or less liability than the defendant.
* Modified 50%: Plaintiffs can only recover if they have less liability than the defendant.
The slight differences between these categories can often determine whether a plaintiff may receive damages, making a lawyer’s help especially valuable in comparative negligence cases. Even in areas allowing comparative negligence, it may not be used to defend all cases. For instance, the comparative negligence defense is not available in workers’ comp cases.
Does a Victim Need an Attorney?
The defense of comparative negligence is very complex, involving multiple determinations and witness testimonies. The rules vary by jurisdiction, but they can determine one’s eligibility to recover monetary damages. Those involved in comparative negligence cases should consult personal injury lawyers in Miamisburg, OH. An attorney can explain state law as it pertains to a specific case.