What is contributory negligence and can it hurt my personal injury case?

Huffman & Huffman Brothers-in-Law, P.L.L.C.
2 mins READ
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Virginia is one of only a handful of states in the country that uses contributory negligence rules when considering personal injury claims. If you’ve been injured in an accident in Virginia, contributory negligence can be a serious problem for you and your case.  

Under contributory negligence laws, you can lose your entire right to collect financial recovery from a defendant if you were at all responsible for your accident. You could be found 1% liable for your accident and injuries, and the defendant could be found 99% liable, but you would still be barred from recovering anything for your injuries. That little 1% of liability is enough to effectively end your case outright. For example, say you were talking on your phone at the time another vehicle runs a red light and causes an accident. If the other driver’s insurance company finds out you were talking on your phone, they most likely will use the contributory negligence rule to deny the claim and then you could be left paying thousands in medical bills out of your own pocket.  

What can you do about contributory negligence? 

Insurance defense teams are big fans of Virginia’s contributory negligence rules because they work in their favor. The moment a claim is filed against them or one of their policyholders, the knee-jerk reaction will be to deny claim and say that the person who is making the claim is at least 1% liable and, therefore, not allowed to recover compensation. 

As a claimant or plaintiff, you face an uphill legal battle to overcome the obstacles of contributory negligence. The best way to overcome those challenges to your full financial recovery is simple – team up with a highly experienced personal injury attorney. 

Personal injury attorneys in Virginia have had to build their careers around the challenges of contributory negligence. They understand how to find and utilize convincing evidence of liability to argue that the only fair liability assignment is 100% on the defendant. At Huffman & Huffman, our team has over 150 years of experience dealing with Virginia’s contributory negligence rule and we have successfully recovered millions of dollars for our clients.   

Injured in an accident and worried about contributory negligence?  

Because contributory negligence can easily block your personal injury claim – it is even more important to contact Huffman & Huffman BEFORE you talk to the insurance companies. Hiring an experienced attorney to handle the insurance companies and build a strong case to push back against any allegations of contributory negligence could save you from paying out thousands of dollars of you own money for an accident that was not your fault. Our award-winning legal team has the experience needed to guide you through the process and get you the compensation that you deserve. Initial consultations are always free and you don’t pay a penny until our firm wins your case!  

Contact Huffman & Huffman Brothers-in-Law, PLLC at (757) 599-6050 to schedule your free case evaluation. We have offices in Newport News and Virginia Beach, and we are happy to come to meet with you at your home or wherever is most convenient for you. We serve clients all over Hampton Roads and the surrounding areas. 

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