Personal injury cases can be complicated, and Indiana’s comparative fault laws can add an extra layer of difficulty. If you’re injured in an accident and someone else is at fault, you may be entitled to compensation. However, your own actions may also play a role in the outcome of your case. Here, we discuss Indiana’s comparative fault laws and how they affect personal injury cases.
Indiana is a comparative fault state, which means that a plaintiff’s damages can be reduced by their own percentage of fault. In other words, if you were partially responsible for the accident that caused your injuries, your compensation may be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to you.
For example, let’s say you were injured in a car accident, and the other driver was found to be 80% at fault. However, the remaining fault (20%) was assigned to you because you were driving while distracted. If your damages were $100,000, your compensation would be reduced by 20% to $80,000.
Fault percentages are determined by the jury in a personal injury trial, or by negotiations between the parties in a settlement. The jury or negotiators consider the evidence presented and determine the percentage of fault for each party.
Indiana’s comparative fault laws can make personal injury cases more challenging for plaintiffs. Defendants and insurance companies may try to shift as much blame as possible onto the plaintiff to reduce their own liability.
For example, in a slip and fall case, the defendant may argue that the plaintiff was wearing inappropriate shoes or was not paying attention to their surroundings. In a car accident case, the defendant may argue that the plaintiff was speeding or not wearing a seatbelt.
Plaintiffs should have strong evidence and arguments to counter these claims. An experienced personal injury attorney could help build a case that shows the defendant’s actions were the primary cause of the accident and that the plaintiff’s actions were not a significant factor.
While Indiana’s comparative fault laws can complicate personal injury cases, they also provide a way for plaintiffs to receive compensation even if they were partially at fault. If you’ve been injured in an accident, it’s important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you navigate the legal process and protect your rights. Contact our firm today to get started.
Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & NewlinN/a
The financial burden that often comes with a serious injury can be too much for many people to bear. Unexpected medical debt, damaged personal property, and the sudden loss of income can impact the budgets of most families. The good news is that a successful injury claim could help reduce that financial strain after a serious accident. Get in touch with a Terre Haute personal injury lawyer with Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin to learn more.
© Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin