plainfield personal injury lawyerOne major misunderstanding about personal injury lawsuits is that the issue of fault is usually cut and dry. In reality, determining who is to blame for an injury-causing incident is often the hardest and most time-consuming part of an injury suit. Sometimes, the person at fault for an accident is obvious. However, many personal injury suits involve situations in which several parties share fault for the injury-causing accident. Fortunately, you can still receive compensation for your damages even if you were partially at fault for them. Doing so, however, requires an understanding of Illinois’ “comparative negligence” laws.

Modified Comparative Negligence Basics

Illinois courts rely on a doctrine known as “modified comparative negligence.” This means that you may be able to recover compensation for your losses even if you are partially to blame for the situation in which your losses occurred. As long as you were not more than half at fault for the accident or incident that caused your injuries, you can still receive compensation.

For example, if you were hit by a drunk driver, it may seem obvious that the driver of the other vehicle is to blame. However, what if you were speeding when the accident occurred? In situations like these, the courts will assign a percentage of blame to each party involved in the incident. The amount of compensation you can receive will be reduced according to your percentage of fault. However, if you are found to be 51 percent or more to blame for the accident, you cannot recover anything.

Consider the following example: You are hurt in a car accident that causes $60,000 of damage (including medical bills), and you were found to be 20 percent at fault for the accident. Presuming there was only one other liable party, you would be responsible for covering 20 percent, or $12,000, of the damages, and the other party would need to compensate you for the remaining 80 percent of financial damages.

Seeking Compensation When Someone Else’s Negligence Causes You Harm

The issue of comparative negligence does not only apply to car accidents. Comparative negligence claims can also stem from incidents including but not limited to:

If you have suffered an injury due to the negligence or carelessness of another party in Illinois, it is critical that you speak with an attorney who has experience in comparative negligence cases.

Contact a Plainfield Comparative Negligence Attorney

Injury claims involving more than one at-fault party can quickly become complex. If you wish to pursue compensation and you were partially at fault for your injuries, you need an experienced Will County personal injury lawyer by your side. Call 815-577-7500 for a free consultation at Flaherty Law today.



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