Sometimes, personal injury cases involve only one party’s fault, and receiving a liability claim is straightforward and simple for cases like that. However, there is a good percentage of shared fault accidents, and it is kind of complex to process a liability claim. You might want to talk to a personal injury lawyer in Plano about your personal injury case, but before that, let us look into some scenarios regarding the shared faults:
- A bike rider follows a vehicle on the road very closely, and the car at the front takes a turn without giving any signal, which causes a collision between the two.
- A visitor or a customer in a mall/store using his phone, all focused on his phone and not looking at the floor or where he is placing his steps, slips, and falls on an unmarked, dangerously slippery floor.
- A pedestrian unexpectedly switched from walking on the sidewalk to the road and got hit by a truck or vehicle traveling over the speed limit.
In the above-mentioned situations, multiple parties are eligible to receive recovery compensation for their injuries. The legal process of comparative negligence/fault usually applies to these kinds of cases.
Difference Between Comparative Negligence and Contributory Negligence
Comparative negligence and contributory negligence are the two standards for dealing with shared fault cases. If someone is facing pain due to someone else’s mistake and ignorance, they can file a personal injury claim to receive compensation for their loss. A personal injury lawsuit is suitable in this scenario.
But if the plaintiff was involved in causing the accident, their own actions were the cause behind the incident; then they are not eligible to receive compensation for their recovery. In contributory negligence, a plaintiff can never be eligible for compensation even if they were partially involved in causing the accident.
On the other hand, in comparative negligence, a plaintiff can receive compensation for his recovery even if he partially caused the accident. But they will not receive the whole amount of recovery for all of their damages.
The court decides the percentage of faults of each party, the court assigns the faults, and then that percentage of fault decides the amount of recovery every party will receive. The percentage of their fault will lessen their amount of damage recoveries accordingly.
Comparative Negligence in Texas
Comparative negligence is a commonly used standard in Texas. Specifically, the 51% rule that falls under the category of modified comparative negligence is common in Texas. In the 51% rule standard, a plaintiff will only be eligible to receive compensation for his recovery if his fault is not more than 50%.
If the plaintiff is 51% or more at fault, he can’t be eligible for any recovery compensation. Dealing with a comparative negligence case in Texas can be complex and challenging to manage for a victim.
Determining whether it is a comparative negligence case or a contributory negligence case and determining the percentage of fault can be very complex. That is why it is important to see a personal injury lawyer to understand the complexities of the legal process.
What is Texas’ Modified Comparative Negligence?
According to the Texas modified comparative negligence standard, a person is allowed to sue the other party even if he is partially at fault for causing the accident. But there is one thing to consider: the percentage of your fault.
If a person is 51% involved in causing the accident, he cannot receive the recovery for his damages. This rule is commonly known as the “51% bar” rule. This rule is not as strict or extreme as the contributory negligence standard, but it can still be harsh on people who are involved in “shared fault” for causing an accident.
This standard can clearly affect the amount of damages you can recover while experiencing a personal injury lawsuit. If you are partially involved in causing an accident, your amount of recovery will be deducted or reduced by the percentage of your fault. For instance, if your fault is 25% and your damages are $100,000, you will only receive $75,000.
PIP in Texas
PIP stands for personal injury protection. In Texas, it is normal for drivers to have their personal injury protection coverage as part of their vehicle insurance policy. This coverage is a basic level coverage that covers the basic recovery after an accident.
This coverage covers $10,000 of medical bills no matter who is at fault. And in some scenarios, PIP can extend to funeral expenses and lost income. Insurance companies are required to offer this coverage to drivers by the Texas law. But drivers have the right to deny coverage.
If you want to receive personal injury protection coverage (PIP), you must act swiftly. Right after experiencing an accident, contact your insurance company. They will inquire about details of the accident, medical expenses, injuries, and other important things. So make sure you have all the documents before you contact your insurance company.
If you have recently experienced a personal injury case, you need to contact a lawyer. You don’t have to go through all the legal complexities by yourself.