Those who require a defense attorney for personal injury lawsuits should be aware of the comparative and contributory negligence rules imposed in certain states.
Most states follow the comparative negligence rule. According to Matthew Jube, Attorney at Law, this means that both parties have their respective shares of fault for causing the incident. If you live in Utah, consider hiring a criminal attorney in Provo where rates could be lower than similar professionals in Salt Lake City.
Comparative vs. Contributory
There are only five places in the US that implement the contributory negligence rule for personal injury cases. These comprise Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
You would need to be sure that you didn’t cause the accident that led to another person’s to avoid paying damages. In a comparative negligence state, defendants would still be liable to pay damages even if the plaintiff played a major role in the accident.
However, some states observe the modified system that only requires the defendant to pay the other party if the former caused 50% of the accident or more.
A personal injury lawsuit would affect your criminal history even if you weren’t convicted of the case. Potential employers and banks have ways to find out a person’s record for misdemeanor and felony convictions. Hence, it may be in your best interest to seal this information.
In Colorado, adults spend $224 on court filing fees for sealing criminal records. Take note that traffic violations aren’t qualified for this process. Those convicted of sexual-related crimes are generally prohibited from sealing their criminal history as well.
It can be difficult to determine your liability to a personal injury lawsuit. Whether you live in a comparative or contributory negligence state, it’s important to hire a lawyer and keep your criminal records as clean as possible.