FAQ: If I’m Partially at Fault for a Trucking Accident, Can I Still Recover Compensation?
Many trucking accidents occur each year in and around Kansas City, and often fault might not be clear or their might be shared fault in the accident. That’s why the Mann, Wyatt & Rice Injury Attorneys is commonly asked, “If I’m partially at fault for a trucking accident, can I still recover compensation?”
According to founding attorney and partner, Scott Mann, “You can, but laws vary between states.” Since Kansas City straddles the Kansas/Missouri state line, we’ve put together some helpful information related to both states:
Kansas has what’s called proportional comparative fault, which bars recovery if you are more than 51 percent at fault for the trucking accident. This means that you cannot file a liability claim and lawsuit against the truck driver if you were more than 51 percent responsible for the accident. Of course, if you had less than 51 percent responsibility, you can file a liability claim and lawsuit against the truck driver.
Example: A truck driver was traveling 30 miles per hour over the speed limit when he hit Karen’s car at an intersection. Even though Karen was partially at fault for not waiting until the road was completely clear before crossing, the insurance company determined the trucker was 60 percent at fault due to his excessive speed, which means Karen was only 40 percent at fault. Although the trucker suffered a broken leg from the accident, he is not entitled to recover for his injury due to the fact that he was more than 51 percent at fault for the accident. However, Karen is entitled to recovery for her injuries.
“Missouri is a much better environment for comparative fault cases,” said Mann. “It has pure comparative fault.” Pure comparative fault means that if an injured person is partially at fault for causing their own injuries, their damages are reduced by the percentage of their fault.
Example: Mary was checking her cell phone when she rear-ended a semi-truck. Mary broke several bones and it was determined that she was 80 percent at fault for the accident, although the truck driver was found 20 percent at fault due to a malfunctioning brake light. Damages for Mary’s injuries amounted to $20,000. Michelle is entitled to recover $4,000 for her injuries— that is, $20,000 less 80 percent ($16,000) for her percentage of fault.
Contact Mann, Wyatt & Rice Trucking Accident Attorneys in Kansas City
Have you been injured in a trucking accident in or around the Kansas City area? Whether the accident was partially your fault or not, it’s important to contact a trucking accident attorney who can look at all the facts and discuss the best plan of action.
The Mann, Wyatt & Rice Injury Attorneys works on contingency, so there are no fees unless/until a settlement or verdict is reached, which means you have nothing to lose and everything to gain! We can help you investigate your trucking accident to compile evidence, negotiate on your behalf with the other driver’s insurance company and, if needed, file/pursue a lawsuit.