Why VA’s Contributory Negligence Law Means You Need a Lawyer
Some states in the U.S. allow victims to pursue and recover compensation even if they’re partially at fault for their accidents and injuries through a system called comparative negligence. Virginia is not one of those states. Instead, Virginia uses a system called contributory negligence.
Contributory negligence means that people who are even 1% at fault for their accidents can’t pursue compensation for them. Unfortunately, assigning 1% of blame for a crash is easy. Even the smallest mistakes and oversights can cause an otherwise faultless victim to receive a tiny percentage of blame. But whether they’re 100% at fault or 1%, any amount of fault is enough to result in no damages and no settlement check.
That’s why it’s important to call an experienced Roanoke auto accident lawyer right away after an accident. Fault for a crash is typically assigned by the responding police officer, but they don’t always do an extensive or exhaustive analysis of the crash or accident scene. That means their report and their assignment of fault may be inaccurate.
At Skolrood Law Firm, our legal team will work hard to determine who was at fault for your crash and by how much. We can also help prove that you weren’t at fault by collecting evidence that shows you couldn’t possibly have caused or contributed to the crash.
The upside to contributory negligence is that victims are entitled to 100% of the compensation after crashes, rather than having a percentage of it reduced as in comparative negligence. That’s why it’s so important to get a lawyer—there’s simply too much money at stake to risk getting nothing. Contact us today for a free consultation.