Personal Injury Lawyers in Burlington VT Help Clients When Comparative Negligence Is an Issue

by | Jul 31, 2018 | Lawyers

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Many times, when a car crash happens, or someone slips and falls on an icy sidewalk, the situation was not just one person’s fault. If a serious injury occurred and it appears that someone else was mostly to blame, that individual may want to consult Personal Injury Lawyers in Burlington VT.

Comparative Negligence

One driver may have run a red light and struck another car, but the driver of that car may have been driving well above the speed limit. A person who falls on an icy sidewalk may not have noticed the ice because of looking down at a smartphone. In Vermont, injury cases are considered regardiing comparative negligence. If an injured person can be considered 50 percent or less at fault for what happened, then the insurer or the person otherwise responsible for the accident should pay a certain amount of financial compensation.

Being Honest

Personal Injury Lawyers in Burlington VT will want to know whether the prospective client was doing anything at the time of the incident that could constitute a shared fault. It’s crucial for this individual to be honest with the attorney, since any shared negligence may be uncovered by the insurance company or this lawyer during investigations. For instance, there may have been a witness at the scene who saw the person reading a phone screen just before slipping on ice.

Other Types of Evidence

Insurers and property owners may find other types of evidence to pay out lesser amounts of money because of shared fault. The person may have been walking somewhere that visitors are not allowed, like making a shortcut through a fenced-in area of the property. Technically, this would be trespassing.

If the person has made a claim with an insurer and a shared fault is alleged, it’s important to schedule a free consultation with a law firm such as McVeigh Skiff LLP. The injured individual should explain in detail what happened and not minimize his or her responsibility in what happened. However, this type of discussion should not be had with the insurance company, as insurance adjusters can use any statements to reduce the validity of the claim.