Understanding Contributory Negligence In Accident Claims

When an accident happens, most people are at first concerned about the health of those that are involved. Once it’s been determined that everyone is okay, then those involved in the collision start blaming each other for the cause of the accident. Depending on the severity of the accident, this can happen right at the scene.

Irrespective of the person at fault, many jurisdictions in Ontario have statutes, where those who have been involved in an accident are eligible candidate for to receiving the Statutory Accident Benefits. These are awarded based on the severity of injuries. Those who have been injured due to negligent actions may also be able to file a tort claim or some other civil suit as a way to obtain higher compensation amount for pain and suffering. This amount of money could also be used to cover loss of income or medical expenses or other accident related expenses.

Establishing blame for these types of cases isn’t always a simply process. The person injured will often believe they are the victim whereas an insurance company would argue that the injured person’s actions contributed to the injuries. This is termed as contributory negligence. Discuss it with a personal injury lawyer in Vaughan.

Statutory Benefits Basics

Each jurisdiction will have a different set of guidelines for benefits provided as statutory benefits. The statutory benefits schedule, in its various forms, cover vehicle insurance policies which states what is covered and the limits of coverage. The benefits are paid depending on the level of injury,irrespective of who was responsible for the accident. These types of benefits are termed as no fault benefits.

Varied benefits may include the following;

• Funeral expenses and death benefits in case of a fatality
• Income replacement benefits
• Attendant care
• Rehabilitation and medical treatment costs over and above that is offered by other insurance plans
• Open ended extra expenses depending on the injuries

In many cases, the amount of benefits paid out will not meet the injured person’s needs. It often involves legal back and forth with the insurance company of the person who caused the accident looking for ways to reduce or eliminate a payout. This is where insurance companies may look into contributory negligence as a way to show that the victim was partially in fault for the accident. If they can prove contributory negligence, there is a chance they can justify reducing the amount of the payout or perhaps completely eliminating it.

Contributory Negligence Basics

Contributory negligence is recognized by many court systems and is a concept that the injured person’s role in the accident contributed to his or her injury. Depending on the jurisdiction, the victim may not need to prove that the other person is entirely at fault for their injuries. Whatever the courts ultimately decide is the percentage of the damages caused is what is awarded. This means that the victim can only recover the portion of their damages that the other person is responsible for causing. If the blame in an accident is determined to be 80-20 in favor of the victim, the victim will only be able to recover 80 percent of whatever damages are awarded by the court.

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