In Texas, to collect damages for an accident, you must prove the other party or parties were at fault for causing the accident. This is not always as easy as it sounds. At Springer & Lyle, if you were in an accident, we will investigate the case and help you in proving fault.
The party from whom you are trying to collect damages may claim that you were at least partially at fault. For example, if you were a pedestrian and hit by a car, and you claim the driver was negligent, the driver may allege you were also at fault because you were crossing in the middle of the road and not in a crosswalk.
If the driver proves you were partially at fault, Texas law follows a modified comparative fault principle in awarding damages in negligence cases. The law is called “proportionate responsibility” and is codified in a state statute.
What is Comparative Fault?
Under the principle of comparative fault and the proportionate responsibility statute, in Texas, if you were partially at fault for an accident, you may still collect damages from the other party, but your damages will be reduced by the amount of fault attributed to you.
For example, if your damages are $100,000, but it is determined you were 30 percent at fault, your damages will be reduced by 30 percent, and you will receive $70,000 instead of $100,000.
In pure comparative fault states, a plaintiff can collect damages proportionate to their fault even if they were 99 percent at fault for the accident. Under Texas “proportionate responsibility” statute, which allows for a modified comparative fault principle, if your “percentage of responsibility is greater than 50 percent” you will collect nothing from the other party.
The Most Common Accidents Where Comparative Fault Applies
The principle of comparative fault or proportionate responsibility applies to all accidents. Some of the most common accidents are:
- Vehicle accidents.
- Pedestrian accidents.
- Bicycle accidents.
- Premises liability.
- Slip and fall accidents.
- Product liability accidents.
Consult with Springer & Lyle
If you were in an accident and need to collect damages from the other party but are concerned about your level of fault, you need the assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney.
The personal injury attorneys at Springer & Lyle can help you obtain the reasonable compensation you are entitled for your injuries, lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other physical damage. Contact us at 940.387.0404 for a free consultation.