This video describes comparative negligence and contributory negligence. Comparative negligence and contributory negligence are two different types of affirmative defenses that a defendant will raise in a personal injury lawsuit.
Defendants use these two affirmative defenses in order to claim that the plaintiff was at least partly responsible for their own injury. In situations where the defendant asserts comparative negligence and contributory negligence the fact finder is charged with assigning who is responsible for the accident.
In order to complete this task, the fact finder will assign a percentage of the liability to each of the parties to the suit.
Each jurisdiction has different laws concerning comparative negligence and contributory negligence.
Some jurisdictions use comparative negligence and others use contributory negligence.
In jurisdictions that use contributory negligence the plaintiff cannot recover any damages from the defendant if the plaintiff was negligent. This means that the plaintiff will receive no compensation if jury assigns any percentage of liability to the plaintiff.
Many people found the contributory negligence rule to be harsh.
Jurisdictions started adopting comparative negligence. In jurisdictions that have adopted comparative negligence the plaintiff can recover even if the plaintiff is partly responsible for the accident. The plaintiff’s recovery depends on the specific type of contributory negligence that the jurisdiction has adopted and the percentage of liability that the fact finder assigned to the plaintiff.
This video provides examples of what a plaintiff could recover in contributory negligence jurisdictions.
These concepts are very complicated.
If you are facing a situation where a defendant is claiming that your damages should be reduced because of comparative negligence or contributory negligence you should speak to an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
The lawyers at Hutchison & Stoy are happy to answer any questions you have about comparative negligence and contributory negligence. We offer free case evaluations.
During this evaluation we can explain how these two concepts will affect your personal injury case.