A car accident occurs when one driver hits another driver. Liability is determined by which driver was negligent. Negligence is defined as a driver not acting as a reasonable driver would in the same and/or similar circumstance. For example, if a reasonable driver would stop at a red light. However, a driver that caused the accident sped through a red light. They are considered negligent. Unfortunately, not all car accidents are simple. Sometimes they are complicated and require the help of a personal injury attorney cheshire ct. For example, the at-fault driver could use the comparative negligence defense in a lawsuit.
What is Comparative Negligence Defense?
Comparative negligence is sometimes called comparative fault. It is a defense used by an at-fault driver to lessen the amount of damages they are required to pay the accident victim. The term “damages” describe the list of expenses a driver may incur from being hurt in an accident. These damages include medical expenses, lost wages and property damage.
How is Comparative Negligence Defense Used?
An at-fault driver claims the accident victim contributed to the accident. In Connecticut, every driver must obey traffic laws and prevent getting harmed in an accident. State law requires a judge or jury to look at the accident victim’s actions while driving.
If the judge or jury determines the accident victim was at-fault, they must determine the percentage of fault. The at-fault driver is no longer 100 percent negligent in the accident. This means they are no longer responsible for all the accident victim’s damages.
Comparative Negligence Defense Decreases the Amount Owed to the Accident Victim
State law requires an accident victim be less than 50 percent negligent for the car accident. If the jury determines they are more than 50 percent negligent, the at-fault driver doesn’t pay anything. This means the accident victim receives no money.
The original verdict for the amount of damages decrease according to the percentage of fault. For instance, an accident victim is found to be 25 percent at fault for the accident. Their damages would decrease by 25 percent. Thus, they are now responsible for 25 percent of their bills such as medical expenses.
Fault is Also Determined in a Settlement
A settlement is an agreement between the accident victim and at-fault party. The insurance company can also pursue a settlement with the accident victim. The purpose of the settlement is to provide the accident victim money to pay expenses and avoid court. Fault is determined when car insurance adjuster decides how much an accident victim is paid. This means the car insurance adjuster may try to offer a lower amount that what the claim is worth.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in Connecticut
Whenever a driver and/or passenger is involved in a car accident, it is important to contact a car accident attorney. An accident attorney will determine if comparative negligence applies to the case. If it does, they will determine how to fight the defense and get the most money for their client.