When it comes to determining who was at fault following a motor vehicle accident in Kansas, there is what is called comparative, or contributory, negligence. It is very critical to understand the meaning behind comparative fault, as it can greatly impact the amount of compensation that the driver may be able to receive. If one driver does not account for all of the fault in the accident, otherwise known as shared fault, this is where things can get confusing.
Every state has different laws surrounding how shared fault can be handled. There are three different options: pure comparative fault, proportional comparative fault at 51 percent, and proportional comparative fault at 50 percent. In Kansas, fault is determined by the latter, proportional comparative fault at 50 percent.
So what does this mean?
In states like Kansas that use this type of standard for resolving claims, anyone who is less than 50 percent at fault is entitled to compensation if they are injured due to the accident. However, if the person is 50 percent or more at fault, they are not entitled to any compensation at all. This is where Kansas differs from other states. In many other states, compensation is determined based on the amount that you have contributed to the accident, no matter the percentage. This varies across states, but Kansas law is straightforward with the fifty percent rule.
This percentage rule can be very beneficial to many drivers, but it can also be very detrimental. If you have been in an accident that was partially your fault but would not have happened if it were not for the other driver’s actions, you may not be able to receive any compensation because you contributed more than fifty percent.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, you need representation from an auto accident attorney. No matter how much you believe that your actions contributed to the accident, it is still important to have experienced legal consultation to help determine this percentage. From there, an attorney can help you with the next steps of the process, whether you are able to receive compensation or not. Every state is different, so working with a law firm made up of Kansas attorneys who have lived in the state their entire life can also prove to be very beneficial. The attorneys at Lee, Gurney & Hess want to help Kansas citizens get through this confusing time.