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How does contributory negligence affect awards for damages?

On Behalf of | Oct 11, 2022 | Negligence, Tort Litigation

When people suffer injuries due to the negligence of others, whether in a car accident, from a defective product, a slip-and-fall accident or something else, they may be entitled to compensation. This compensation can pay for the medical bills that people incur, any income they lost because they were unable to work, their pain and suffering and other damages.

Contributory negligence may reduce the amount of compensation

When a personal injury lawsuit is based on negligence, the amount of compensation injured people can receive depends on a few factors. One of those factors is whether they contributed to the accident in any way. For example, if the injured driver was speeding when they were hit by a driver running a stop sign, they may have contributed to the cause of the accident or the extent of the damages. This is known as contributory negligence and it can reduce the total amount people receive.

Under Texas law, in these situations, courts place a percentage of fault on each party to the accident. If the victim was 15% at fault for the accident, then their award will be reduced by 15%. So, if the total damages were $100,000, the injured would only receive $85,000 instead of $100,000.

When people in Texas suffer injuries due to the negligence of other people, it can change their lives in an instant. They may be left with serious injuries and deserve compensation for the damages.

However, the other parties in these cases also have rights. They should not necessarily be on the hook for every expense suffered by the injured party.
Personal injury lawsuits can become complicated matters. Experienced attorneys understand how negligence actions work and may be a helpful resource.