It was the other guy’s fault !….well, except for

No one ever wants to think that they were at fault for their own accident, even a little bit. But it sometimes happens that accidents have more than one cause.  An accident is only the last event in a chain of decisions and circumstances .  Just because you might have made one of the mistakes that resulted in the accident, that doesn’t mean you were the only one at fault and it doesn’t mean that you can’t recover at least part of your damages from the other person.  A brief primer:  Kentucky used to use the “contributory negligence” standard which, in simple terms meant that if you were at all responsible for your own injuries, you couldn’t recover your damages from the other person at fault.  About 25 years ago, that was changed to “comparative negligence” meaning that a jury could determine the percentage of fault to assign to all of the participants to an accident and the injured person could still recover the percentage of fault not assigned to him or herself.  (None of this has anything to do with what is called “No Fault”, which refers to Personal Injury Protection benefits, a different subject for another time.)    In other words, if you and The Other Guy have a wreck that is due to both of you making an equal mistake, you (and he)  may be found 50% at fault and still get 50% of your damages reimbursed.  Depending upon the facts, the percentages could be different.   You may even have been sued by The Other Guy and still end up with the jury apportioning some (maybe even the majority) of fault on him.  There are a lot of factors that come into play when apportionment is being done by a jury, far too many to go into here, but the bottom line is, don’t give up on your own claim, even if it wasn’t all The Other Guy’s fault !

About johngrice

Retired small town lawyer, lifelong motorcyclist, traveler and old guy sitting around thinking.
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