The specific answer to this question varies by state, which is why you need an experienced local attorney to assist you after a car accident. While some states completely bar you from seeking compensation if a collision was even partly your fault, that isn’t the case in Pennsylvania. Crashes under Pennsylvania law are governed by a rule called modified comparative negligence, which can have a major impact on how much you receive.
Understanding Modified Comparative Negligence in PA
To put it simply, this rule states you can seek compensation so long as you were not primarily responsible for the accident. If your amount of fault is 51% or higher, then you are legally unable to recover damages for your medical bills or loss of wages.
There is a catch though. The amount of compensation you receive from the negligent party is reduced by your percentage of fault. For instance, if the accident is deemed to be 10% your fault, any compensation you are awarded will be reduced by 10%.
What this all means is that the other party will likely try to place more of the fault on you than you actually share. That’s why it is absolutely critical to have a skilled accident attorney fully review the incident to ensure you receive the full and fair compensation you are owed.
After conducting a thorough investigation, an attorney can present evidence on your behalf to establish each person’s percentage of fault, such as:
- Photographs or video of the scene.
- Expert witness testimony from an accident reconstructionist, highway safety engineer, or medical professional.
- Testimony from eyewitness bystanders or other passengers in the vehicles.
Were You Injured in a Vehicle Collision?
Even if you were partly at fault for the accident, contact us through our online form to schedule a consultation and explain the basic facts of your case. We want you to receive the complete amount you are owed, and we may be able to help.