Negligence can be proven in a variety of situations, including car accidents, daycare or nursing home injuries, falls, dog bites, faulty product injuries, or even wrongful deaths. In negligence cases, your attorney must be able to prove that another party was at fault because they weren’t exercising the standard of care expected in society. In a car accident, for example, someone could be proven negligent if they were texting and driving, which led to the accident that caused injury or death. Not all states prosecute negligence the same way, and it’s important to understand the different types of negligence laws before taking your case to court.
What is Contributory Negligence?
Abolished in most jurisdictions including Oregon, contributory negligence was a rule stating that if a plaintiff was negligent in any way whatsoever, they were barred from recovery. This meant that even if the plaintiff’s negligence was 99% responsible for the accident, the 1% negligence on the defendant’s part prevented them from winning the case. The precedent behind this idea is that the plaintiff most likely would have avoided injury had they not also been negligent in some way.
What is Comparative Negligence?
In the comparative negligence system, the responsibility for paying damages is split between the two parties, and the recovery for damages is determined by the percentage of fault attributed to them. This prevents the harsh reality where a person or company is completely absolved of fault because of lesser actions on the part of the defendant.
Modified Comparative Negligence Vs. Pure Comparative Negligence
In the modified comparative negligence model, the plaintiff only recovers damages if they’re determined to be less than 51% at fault. In pure comparative negligence, the plaintiff can collect damages even if they are 99% at fault. In that situation, the defendant would still be responsible for damages related to his 1% fault.
Oregon Negligence Law
Oregon practices modified comparative negligence, meaning that the plaintiff can still collect damages as long as the fault attributable to him or her is less than or equal to the combined fault of the defendants. In other words, as long as his or her fault is determined to be less than 51%.
Have more questions about negligence laws in Oregon? Contact negligence attorney Paul Galm today! After handling a wide array of negligence and wrongful death cases including everything from car accidents to nursing home negligence, Paul Galm prides himself on holding negligent parties responsible.