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What Is Contributory Negligence, and Does It Apply to Me?

In an accident, most people wonder if anyone is to blame. These incidences take place every day, and many individuals are harmed in the process. In a personal injury case, it’s relevant to ask if anyone is at fault, because this has a lot to do with helping an accident victim pay their medical bills.

Contributory negligence and comparative negligence both provide a way to allocate fault between parties involved in an accident. For example, if a person contributed in some way to his or her own injuries, this would affect the amount owed to him or her after a civil suit is filed.

Negligence is an extremely important term in personal injury cases. It characterizes conduct that creates an unreasonable risk of harm to others. Contributory negligence is used to describe behaviors that create an unreasonable risk to yourself. All people have a duty to act as reasonable people. When they fail to do so, and an injury occurs, that person might be held totally responsible for the resulting injury.

If the defendant’s attorney can prove the plaintiff contributed to the negligence involved in an accident, the plaintiff may lose any compensation for his or her injuries. Because this approach is somewhat harsh, many states have adopted a comparative negligence approach in one of two ways. Pure comparative negligence means the plaintiff’s damages are totaled and then reduced to reflect his or her contribution to the injury. Modified comparative negligence means the plaintiff recovers nothing if he or she is found to be equally responsible or more responsible for the injury than the defendant.

If you were harmed by the negligence of another person, talk to one of our skilled Otsego County personal injury lawyers about your case as soon as possible. We can look at the details of your case and offer experienced advice regarding your best legal course of action. Let us see what we can do for you.

Contact us at (607) 432-9341 or fill out our online form to schedule a free case consultation with us today.

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