Many people are surprised to learn that one of the motor vehicle accident laws that varies the most from state to state is the law that determines an accident victim’s right to recover damages if they were partially at fault in causing the car accident. In a small handful of states, even if you were only 1 percent at fault, you would be completely barred from obtaining any financial recovery.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, a slightly larger number of states reduce your recovery in proportion to your level of fault – if you were 99 percent at fault, you would still be entitled to recover 1 percent of your damages.
Texas is among the majority of states that fall somewhere in the middle. In Texas, we follow a rule known as “modified comparative negligence.”
Understanding Modified Comparative Negligence
Under Texas’ modified comparative negligence statute, auto accident victims are only barred from recovering damages if they are 51 percent responsible for causing the collision. In other words, as long as the accident was not mostly your fault, you will still be entitled to financial compensation. However, even when an accident is not primarily your fault, your recovery may still be reduced based on the amount of blame that you hold.
Negligence Is Not Necessarily a Bar to Recovery
If you have been involved in a car crash and think you may share responsibility for the accident, the important thing to remember is that this does not necessarily prevent you from obtaining compensation. First and foremost, determining fault in a car accident is an extremely complex process. Fault is the key issue in most cases that go to trial, and an experienced Houston car accident lawyer will fight tooth and nail to demonstrate that the other clients bear ultimate responsibility for their respective injuries.
Second, even if you are partially to blame, as long as you are not mostly to blame, Texas law still entitles you to a partial recovery. As long as you can make a case for being under the 51 percent threshold, you have a chance of obtaining financial compensation.
Local Car Accident Lawyers | Morrow & Sheppard LLP
Morrow & Sheppard LLP represents accident victims in insurance settlement claims and lawsuits throughout the country, with an emphasis in Texas and Louisiana. Their home office is in Houston, Texas, but they often travel to meet with clients wherever they need help.
If you have been injured in a collision, Morrow & Sheppard LLP can provide a thorough assessment of your chances of obtaining financial compensation. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, contact us today.