Pure Comparative Negligence Attorneys in Los Angeles
Whether you were involved in a motor vehicle or bus accident, it is important to understand your legal rights. When you have auto accidents involving multiple defendants or pile-up crashes, it can be complex to apportion fault amongst defendants and arrive at an accurate award of damages. Pure comparative negligence is a system used to determine the relative liability of defendants and damages available to accident victims. In essence it attempts to resolve issues of determining recovery when multiple defendants are involved.
In a pure comparative negligence jurisdiction, each defendant is only liable for his or her percentage of fault. The plaintiff would still able to recover damages in a comparative negligence jurisdiction, even if he or she was at fault in contributing to the accident. The ultimate award of damages for a plaintiff will be reduced by his or her own percentage of fault.
Overview of Pure Comparative Negligence in Accident or Injury Claims
Negligence is a term used to characterize conduct that creates an unreasonable risk of harm to others. If you are negligent, and your negligence caused another person to become injured, then you're legally responsible for paying the damages endured. In order to prevail on a negligence claim, the party will have to prove the following elements:
The defendant owed a duty toward the plaintiff (i.e. reasonable care for other's safety)
The defendant failed to act in a reasonable way, or breached its duty (for example, a driver was reckless or intoxicated)
The defendant's breach was the actual cause of another's injuries
The defendant's breach was the proximate cause of the injuries (the defendant should have known that the breach would cause injury)
The plaintiff suffered actual injuries, for which they may claim damages
Where does Comparative Negligence apply?
Comparative negligence can be applicable as a defense to damages in a negligence lawsuit. Typically, when a plaintiff is suing a defendant for damages they endured because of something negligent the defendant has done. Pure Comparative negligence can be raised as a defense to a plaintiff's negligence suit, if the defendant can provide proof the plaintiff is also at fault for their injuries.
Based in California the court will take specific direction once the percentage of fault has been assigned to parties involved in accident. The courts will take the assigned percentage of fault and deduct the percentage from the amount of damages awarded. For example, if a plaintiff is awarded $100,000 and its determined they are 20% at fault for their own injury, the court would reduce the plaintiff's award to $80,000.
California is a "pure" comparative negligence state, where the plaintiff is awarded damages regardless of their fault percentage. This means if a plaintiff is found to be 80% at fault, they will still receive the remaining 20% of their settlement award.
Some states have modified comparative so that a plaintiff cannot recover damages if they are found to be more than 50% at fault for their injury.
How Does Comparative Negligence Work?
In California there are two (2) types of comparative negligence systems:
Pure comparative negligence. This compensates plaintiffs for damages based on each party’s percentage of fault.
Modified comparative negligence systems. This compensates plaintiffs only if plaintiffs own fault does not exceed a certain percentage. In both pure comparative negligence and modified comparative negligence jurisdictions, a judge or jury will be responsible for determining the percentage of fault attributable to each party involved in the personal injury case.
Pure Comparative Negligence Jurisdictions
When a person is involved in pure comparative negligence jurisdictions, the plaintiffs may still recover damages even if they are partially at fault in a negligence case. This rule also benefits plaintiffs involved in negligence actions in which their percentage of fault exceeds a defendant’s percentage of fault. For example, Jacob and Rebecca are involved in a car crash. In that case, the jury decides that Jacob (the plaintiff) is 51 percent at fault for causing his own injuries, while Rebecca (the defendant) is 49 percent at fault. Even though Jacobs percentage of fault outweighs Rebecca’s fault, he can still recover compensation if the jury returns a verdict in his favor.
In a different example, perhaps the jury determines that Jacob (the plaintiff) is 99 percent at fault for causing his own injuries, while Rebecca (the defendant) is only 1 percent at fault. In this example, it would still be possible for Jacob to recover 1 percent of the ultimate damages award from Rebecca. His ultimate award would be reduced by 99 percent of the damages, but he would still be able to recover 1 percent of the award. Pure comparative negligence jurisdictions empower plaintiffs in allowing them to recover an award even in cases when their own negligence is greater than a defendant’s negligence.
We Fight To Recover Your Remedies
Based on the specifications of your case - the details of the accident, how severe your injury was, it is ultimately going to determine what you could be entitled to sustain based on your case. However, what you can be compensated for if your case prevails can often be put into several different categories.
The categories of compensation can include:
Medical bills: Should you win your case, you could be awarded compensation for medical bills you’ve had to pay as a result of your injury. This includes both past and future bills stemming from the injury, and can potentially cover expenses such as transport or in-home rehabilitation services.
Lost wages: Lost wages can be awarded if your injury has caused significant missed time at work, or has made you unable to perform your job. You could be entitled to even more lost wages if the injury leaves you permanently disabled and unable to find consistent work.
Pain and suffering: In some cases, the damages endured from physical pain and emotional suffering can be compensated to pay for therapy treatments.
Punitive damages: Punitive damages are awarded in more extreme cases, wherein the injury was caused by someone’s recklessness. They are awarded to try and dissuade the defendant and others from acting with that level of recklessness again.
You Don’t Pay Until You Win
Contact an experienced Pure Comparative Negligence Accident attorney in Los Angeles to schedule a free, no obligation initial case evaluation at 1-424-256-9055. Our Pure Comparative Negligence Accident attorney will help protect your rights. And remember, You Don’t Pay until You Win, or You Don’t Pay At All!
Lawyer Referral Service:
If you are in a need a Pure Comparative Negligence Accident attorney to help you get appropriate compensation and medical care you deserve, you should contact an auto accident lawyer today. Our experienced auto accident lawyers in Los Angeles will help you overcome your Pure Comparative Negligence Accident injury or damage.
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