Comparative Negligence vs. Contributory Negligence
When an accident occurs, whether a Houston automobile accident, slip and fall accident, or another type of mishap, it can be vital to determine who was at fault. Knowing who was at fault in the accident helps a personal injury attorney determine compensation for anyone injured. Anthony Muharib will put all our knowledge and expertise behind you to be sure you receive all the compensation to which you are entitled to injuries suffered in an accident.
Contributory negligence is a legal term that limits the compensation you may receive for an accident. Under a contributory negligence system, you are not entitled to collect damages from the other party if you contributed to an accident. This is true even if the other party’s responsibility was far more extreme than yours.
For example, if you suffer a slip-and-fall accident on another person’s property because that person has not cleaned the ice off the sidewalk, that person has been negligent. However, if you acted inappropriately that contributed to the accident, you would not be entitled to damages. Some states still use contributory negligence to determine damages in personal injury cases.
In most states in the US, a more lenient system is used, called comparative negligence. In a case determined by pure comparative negligence, if you are determined to be five percent responsible for the slip and fall accident due to your inappropriate behavior, the person in charge of cleaning the sidewalk is still 95 percent responsible, and you are entitled to collect damages to help pay for 95 percent of your resulting medical expenses.
This is the most straightforward application of comparative negligence. In most states, a modified version of comparative negligence is used, called modified comparative fault. In these cases, the judge and jury of each case determine the percentage of fault assigned to each party and any monetary settlements according to this ruling. In some cases, if the defendant is determined to be 50 percent or more at fault, he is not entitled to collect damages.
Anthony Muharib understands the subtleties of comparative negligence and how it applies to Texas law. If you have been involved in an accident, we can help you assemble your case to help you receive compensation to help defray the costs of your injuries. I