If you have been injured in any type of car accident in or around Spokane, contact us today for a free and confidential consultation.
Anybody who is operating a motor vehicle on a Washington roadway has a duty to use due care and caution for both the safety of the person and property of others and the safety of themselves and their own property too. If the victim of a motor vehicle collision has been stopped at a red light for 30 seconds and is then rear-ended, it’s difficult to argue that he or she wasn’t looking out for their own personal safety and the safety of their property. At other times, like in an intersection accident, the person claiming injury might bear partial responsibility for the collision.
That’s when the law of comparative negligence can arise.
What is comparative negligence?
The law of comparative negligence can operate as a partial defense to allegations of negligence. For example, one vehicle makes a left turn in front of another vehicle while the other vehicle’s driver was looking at a text message. While the turning vehicle failed to yield the right-of-way, the other driver failed to keep a proper lookout for vehicles that might stop or turn in front of him. A judge or jury might find the driver of the second vehicle to be partially at fault for the accident and assign a percentage of fault to that comparatively negligent driver.
Pure comparative negligence states
Washington is in the minority of states that have adopted the law of pure comparative negligence. You can often still recover damages, even if you are 70 or 80 percent at fault for an accident. Of course, the total percentage of damages attributable to that claimant will be deducted from their gross award.
Regardless of the fact that you might be able to prove that somebody else caused your accident and resulting damages, your award is likely to be reduced if the defendant can show that part of the fault for the accident was yours.
All accidents and situations in Spokane and beyond are very unique. After any accident, contact our offices for a free consultation and case evaluation. Any defendant can allege that you were comparatively negligent. The combination of our knowledge, experience and litigation strategies might overcome allegations of comparative negligence against you in your accident case. Don’t cooperate with the insurer on the other side by giving it a written or recorded statement. The law doesn’t require you to give that statement, and the insurer will only try to use it against you in the future.
Invoke your rights rather than giving them up. Contact our experienced car accident attorneys right away after any accident.