KELLUM LAW FIRM – NEWS & RESOURCES
Contributory Negligence – What is it and why should I care?
After you have been in a car accident, there are so many things that you have to think about, deal with and worry about. Insurance companies, repair companies, doctors etc… As a North Carolina car / truck or motorcycle driver, one thing you didn’t even know that you had to worry about is contributory negligence.
Contributory negligence? What’s that?
A very basic definition of contributory negligence is “..the lack of care by a plaintiff for his own safety” (Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006).
It was the dominant common law defense in the 19th and 20th centuries but has fallen by the wayside in most states. Only four states and the District of Columbia still use contributory negligence when deciding liability in an automobile accident or crash.
Unfortunately, North Carolina is one of those states.
What does that mean for you? Let’s say someone ran a red light causing you to slam into the side of their vehicle. It was the other drivers’ fault, right? They ran the red light. Well, if the other driver’s insurance company and their team of expert car crash lawyers can prove that you were driving five miles over the speed limit or were in any other way at fault, then you contributed to the accident therefore you are not entitled to any compensation.
When you get into a car accident in North Carolina or one of the other contributory negligence states it is imperative that you speak with a knowledgeable car accident attorney as soon as possible after the incident. They can assess your case, walk you through potential defenses and help you with important decisions you will have to make. Of course this applies equally to motorcycle accidents and accidents involving big trucks.
The insurance companies have powerful attorneys working for them. You should too.
The content on this website is provided for general information only. It should NOT be construed by the reader as LEGAL ADVICE. The LAWS of the Nation and of the State of North Carolina are subject to frequent change and addition. Such changes and additions may periodically render the general information on our website out-of-date, thus, we disclaim any and all liability in respect to actions taken or not taken by the reader based on his or her interaction with the content of this website.
OUR ADVICE TO YOU:
It’s often the case that the outcome of an accident or injury claim can hinge on the smallest of details. While it may seem appealing to try to handle a case on your own, it’s rare that acting independently of a lawyer will yield the best results for the plaintiff. Therefore, whilst we encourage you to read the useful articles at our website, we strongly recommend that you seek sound legal advice before attempting to deal with any type of accident or injury claim on your own.