If you were hurt in an accident and believe you might be partially to blame, you might worry about whether you can recover any compensation from the other party. Even if you are partially at fault for an accident, you may have a viable claim.
An Arkansas car accident attorney can handle your accident injury claim and answer your questions about what happens if you might be partially at fault for an accident.
How Modified Comparative Fault Works
Arkansas is a modified comparative fault state. That means that, if you are partially at fault for an accident, your fault will be compared to the fault of the other party. Regardless of how many parties are at fault, a percentage of fault may be allocated to each party. Arkansas employs the 49 percent rule. As long as you are 49 percent at fault or less, you can still recover, but your damages will be reduced to reflect your percentage of fault.
For example, suppose the intoxicated driver is 90 percent responsible for the accident and you are 10 percent responsible. Your total damages are found to be $500,000. In that case, your award would be reduced by 10 percent (your percentage of fault), and you would recover $450,000.
To demonstrate the 49 percent rule, let’s say the other driver is 51 percent responsible for the accident and you are 49 percent responsible. Your total damages are found to be $100,000. In that case, your award would be reduced by 49 percent (your percentage of fault), and you would recover $51,000.
If you are more than 49 percent responsible, then you will recover nothing. For example, suppose the other driver is 50 percent responsible for the accident and you are 50 percent responsible. Your total damages are found to be $500,000. In that case, the award is not simply reduced by 50 percent (your percentage of fault). Instead, if you are 50 percent responsible or more, your award will be reduced to nothing.
Types of Recoverable Losses After Getting Hurt in an Accident
Now that we understand how Arkansas’s modified comparative fault rule works, it could help to learn what types of losses a person might be able to recover after getting hurt in an accident that was, at least partly, someone else’s fault.
Here are some of the common types of compensation people pursue after an accident:
- The expense of medical treatment, including things like the ambulance services, emergency room services, diagnostic work, imaging studies, doctor bills, hospital bills, physical therapy bills, and pain management.
- Paychecks missed due to time away from the job while recuperating from injuries.
- Pain and suffering, which represents the physical discomfort and emotional distress of getting injured.
You can talk to an Arkansas personal injury attorney about handling your accident injury case. The comparative fault rule can be complex, so you will want to reach out to a lawyer, even if you are not sure who was at fault for your accident. Reach out to our office today for legal help. We gladly offer a free consultation.