If you have had the misfortune to be the victim in a California car accident then you should understand how the laws of negligence work in the state of California. Negligence is a legal term that essentially means fault or blame. In order to collect compensation for a car accident case in the state of California the other person must have been “negligent” according to California car accident attorney Emery Ledger of Ledger & Associates.
The laws of negligence can vary from state to state which is why it is always in your best interest to consult with a car accident attorney immediately after you have been involved in a car accident. In general, there are two theories of negligence that a state can follow – comparative and contributory. Contributory negligence is only used by a small handful of states at this point. Contributory negligence basically bars you from receiving ANY compensation at all for your injuries of you contributed AT ALL to the accident. As you can see, this approach to negligence can produce some very unfair results. For instance, if a drunk driver plowed into your vehicle and left you crippled for life, you could potentially not receive ANY compensation for your injuries if you were speeding five miles an hour over the speed limit.
Not surprisingly, car accident attorneys favor the more reasonable approach of contributory negligence. California is one of many states that use the contributory negligence approach to car accidents. Under the theory of contributory negligence, all parties involved in the accident are assigned a percentage of the negligence or blame for the accident. In other words, if there were three cars involved in the accident then all three could share a portion of the blame for the accident. Maybe car number one was 80% responsible, car two 15% and car three 5%. What is important is whether YOUR share of the blame is less than the other entities involved in the accident, says California car accident attorney Emery Ledger. If you share a portion of the blame for the accident then your ultimate monetary compensation award may be reduced by the percentage of negligence that was yours. For instance, if you were 5% negligent in the accident and your total award is $10,000 then your compensation award will be reduced by 5% of $10,000 – or $500.
While contributory negligence certainly allows more victims to receive well deserved compensation, it can also complicate the legal aspects of a car accident case. When multiple participants are involved in the accident, deciding negligence can become very difficult and is best left to a car accident attorney. Only an experienced California car accident attorney can look at the facts of your specific case and give you some idea who may be responsible and what your chances are of being compensated for you injuries. If you would like an experienced California car accident attorney to evaluate your case and provide you with a detailed analysis, please feel free to contact the car accident law firm of Emery & Associates at 1-800-300-0001 or visit their website at www.ledgerlaw.com.