If you were involved in an accident for which you were partially at fault, it is still possible to recover compensation for your damages. However, successfully filing a Toronto personal injury claim in this situation can be difficult. The insurance company may try to argue that you are completely at fault for the accident, thus barring you from recovering any compensation. Also, it may argue that your percentage of fault is higher than it truly is, reducing the amount of compensation you can recover.
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Contributory Negligence Laws
Even if an individual is partially to blame for an accident, they are still legally entitled to compensation from the other negligent party. However, the amount of compensation an individual can recover will be lower depending on the degree of fault.
For example, the insurance company may argue that an individual is 20 percent at fault for the accident. In this case, an individual could recover 80 percent of the total damages from the other party.
Examples of Partial Fault
It is not uncommon for two parties to each be partially at fault for an accident. For example, a driver may look down at their cell phone while driving at the same time that another driver ignores yield laws while merging into traffic. In this case, both drivers may be partially to blame for the collision.
Similarly, a customer inside a restaurant who acts carelessly at the top of a staircase may be partially liable if they fall down the stairs, even if there was a broken handrail or the floor was slippery.
Contacting a Lawyer
Although you can legally recover compensation if you were partially at fault for an accident, it can be complicated and difficult to establish your right to compensation. Some insurance companies may attempt to avoid paying for your damages, including arguing that you were mostly at fault for the accident. The negotiation process can be stressful and challenging for claimants, especially when they are injured.
An accident lawyer will know how to deal with insurance companies and will handle the stressful negotiations on your behalf. A lawyer can help recover a fair settlement amount by defending you against unfair allegations of complete or even partial fault.
A lawyer can gather evidence that helps establish fault in your case, such as:
- Eyewitness statements
- Accident reconstruction
- Photographs of the scene
- Video surveillance
- Vehicle inspection
Do not try to take on an insurance company on your own, especially when the insurer is alleging that you are partially at fault for the accident.