Understanding Contributory Negligence in Motor Vehicle Accidents
posted in: Personal Injury
Motor vehicle accidents can have serious consequences, both physically and legally. In Alberta, contributory negligence is an important concept that determines how liability is shared among parties involved in an accident. In this blog post, we will explore what contributory negligence means, how it is assessed, and its impact on compensation claims.
What Is Contributory Negligence?
Contributory negligence refers to the extent to which the actions or behaviour of the injured party contributed to their injuries. In Alberta, this concept is based on the principle of proportionate liability, which means that if both the plaintiff and the defendant are found to have contributed to the accident, their respective degrees of fault will be considered when determining liability and compensation.
How Can Contributory Negligence Affect Me?
To assess contributory negligence, the law examines the actions and behaviours of all parties involved in the accident. Factors such as speeding, distracted driving, failure to yield, or not wearing a seatbelt may be taken into consideration. The degree of contributory negligence is expressed as a percentage. For instance, if the plaintiff is found to be 25% responsible for the accident, their potential compensation may be reduced by that percentage.
In Alberta, the legal principle of contributory negligence could impact your compensation claim. The amount of compensation awarded to an injured party is adjusted based on their percentage of fault. For example, if a plaintiff is awarded $100,000 in damages but found to be 25% responsible for their injuries—by, for example, failing to wear a seatbelt—their compensation will be reduced to $75,000.
How KMSC Law Can Help
If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident in Alberta, KMSC Law LLP can assist. Our lawyers are well-versed in the law of personal injury claims, including the principles of contributory negligence. We can advise you on what percentage of contributory negligence, if any, is reasonable given your injuries and how you suffered them. The Personal Injury Law Team at KMSC is here to advocate for your rights, negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, and ensure that your contributory negligence is fairly assessed.