If you have been hurt by someone else’s negligence, especially in a car accident, slip-and-fall incident, or in a trucking collision, you very likely heard an insurance adjuster use the phrase “contributory negligence.”
They use that phrase when they are either denying your claim completely or trying to push you into accepting a settlement that benefits them and hurts you.
Contributory negligence is a leftover law from the late 19th and early 20th centuries that says that if you are at fault AT ALL for your injuries, then you cannot recover ANYTHING from the other party who was also at fault.
Yeah, it’s crazy. Nearly every other jurisdiction in the world has abandoned this cruel and unreasonable law in favor of comparative negligence, which determines what you can recover based on what percentage of fault each party had for causing the collision.
In a comparative negligence state, for example, if you were 1% at fault and the other person was 99% at fault, and your claim was worth $100,000, then you would recover $99,000. In North Carolina, with those same percentages, instead of $99,000 you would recover NOTHING.
Contact us today by calling us at 919-348-4361 or clicking here to use our website contact form. The consultation is free and we only get paid if we get you a recovery.
You need to talk to a lawyer any time an adjuster uses the phrase “contributory negligence.” That’s because it’s a VERY fact-specific defense, and there are often ways to fight it.
Insurance companies teach their adjusters to talk about contributory negligence even when it doesn’t apply, in the hope that you will back down and take a much smaller amount than you should actually get. It’s just one way they work to minimize your claim. Contact us for the facts. We’ve got your back.