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Can I Collect Compensation for a Car Accident If I Was Partly at Fault?

Posted on in Car Accidents

Can I Collect Compensation for a Car Accident If I Was Partly at Fault?One major misunderstanding about personal injury lawsuits is believing that the issue of fault is usually cut and dry. In reality, determining who is to blame for an injury-causing or fatal accident is often the hardest and most time-consuming part of an injury suit. Sometimes, the person at fault for an accident is obvious. However, many personal injury suits involve situations in which several parties share fault for the injury-causing accident. Fortunately, you can still receive compensation for your damages even if you were partially at fault for them. Doing so, however, requires an understanding of Illinois’ “comparative negligence” laws.

Modified Comparative Negligence Basics

Illinois courts rely on a doctrine known as “modified comparative negligence.” This means that you may be able to recover compensation for your losses even if you are partially to blame for the situation in which your losses occurred. As long as you were not more than half at fault for the accident or incident that caused your injuries, you can still pursue compensation.

For example, if you were hit by a drunk driver, it may seem obvious that the driver of the other vehicle is to blame. However, what if you were speeding when the accident occurred? In situations like these, the courts will assign a percentage of blame to each party involved in the incident. The amount of compensation you can receive will be reduced according to your percentage of fault. However, if you are found to be 51 percent or more to blame for the accident, you cannot recover anything.

Consider the following example: You are hurt in a car accident for which you are seeking $60,000 in a personal injury lawsuit, and you were found to be 20 percent at fault for the accident. The 20 percent, or $12,000, would be taken out of the total award, leaving the other party to pay you for the remaining 80 percent, or $48,000.

Seeking Compensation When Someone Else’s Negligence Causes You Harm

The issue of comparative negligence does not only apply to car accidents. Comparative negligence claims can also stem from incidents including but not limited to:

If you have suffered an injury or your loved one was killed due to the recklessness or carelessness of another party in Illinois, it is critical that you speak with an attorney who has experience in comparative negligence cases.

Contact a Crystal Lake Comparative Negligence Attorney

Injury claims involving more than one at-fault party can quickly become complex. If you wish to pursue compensation and you were partially at fault for the accident, you need an experienced McHenry County personal injury lawyer by your side. Call 815-338-3838 for a free consultation at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, today.

Sources:

https://courts.illinois.gov/CircuitCourt/CivilJuryInstructions/10.00.pdf

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=073500050K2-1116

Illinois State Bar Association State Bar of Wisconsin Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce Illinois Trial Lawyers Association McHenry County Bar Association
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