Can I Get Compensation if the Accident Was Partially My Fault?

Irvin V. CantorMarch 2, 2017

If you were injured in an accident for which you are partly at fault, you might still be able to receive compensation to another party who may also be partly at fault, depending on state rules. Comparative negligence allows for an injured party to receive some compensation even if they are partly at fault. However, there are some states in which you may not be able to receive compensation if a defendant can successfully prove contributory negligence.

In the state of Virginia, the contributory negligence rule is applied. Under contributory negligence, an individual has a duty to act as a reasonable person would for their own safety under the circumstances of the case. If, for example, you were hit by a car while crossing the street without checking for traffic or obeying the crosswalk sign, you may be held responsible for your injuries. The defendant would raise the defense of contributory negligence, stating that you are also partially at fault for the injuries you sustained.

In the event that a defendant is able to prove the defense of contributory negligence, you would be barred from recovering damages. However, sometimes juries will return a verdict for a reduced or compromised amount in favor of the plaintiff even if they believe the plaintiff may have been partially at fault for the accident.

In addition to Virginia, the law of contributory negligence is followed in Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, and the District of Columbia also follow this rule.

Breit Cantor Grana Buckner has recovered hundreds of millions for injury victims in Richmond, Virginia through our devotion and passion for advocating for the rights of our clients. Over the years, we have achieved over 85 verdicts and settlements in excess of $1 million and continue to work as a team to provide each case with the attention and effort it needs.


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