Does contributory negligence impact your right to compensation?

On Behalf of | Jan 9, 2021 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

With the police respond to the scene of a car crash in North Carolina, they investigate carefully. Their report will indicate which driver they believe was at fault for the crash. They may even issue a citation to that driver.

The insurance companies for the drivers involved may also investigate or even recreate the crash to help explore who is actually liable. In a scenario where the other driver is obviously at fault but you may have contributed in some small way to the crash, do you still have the right to compensation?

North Carolina law is not forgiving of driving mistakes

When a drunk driver or someone texting at the wheel slams in to your car, damaging it and injuring you, you may have thousands of dollars in costs. You may want to file an insurance claim or even need to pursue a civil lawsuit against the distracted or drunk driver.

Unfortunately, even small mistakes on your part and affect your right to compensation. For example, if you failed to use your blinker immediately before the crash, police, insurance companies or the courts may assign you a portion of fault for the crash.

“Contributory negligence” is your portion of responsibility a crash. In North Carolina, having any contributory negligence prevents you from seeking compensation from the other driver.

You can fight claims of contributory negligence

Your right to compensation doesn’t just evaporate when someone else alleges that you have partial responsibility for a crash. You can potentially go to court to build a case that supports your claim that they are responsible and should compensate you. Getting help with an injury claim, especially if the other party wants to fight you, can increase your chances of success.