If you want to recover compensation for the full extent of harm that you have suffered, have to effectively prove liability and your damages. As a result, most people who have been injured in a car accident focus on playing offense in their case. After all, this is the only way to win. But as you navigate your personal injury claim, you can’t overlook the possibility that you might have to play some defense, too.
How comparative negligence may affect your case
In your case, you might have to be prepared to defend your own driving actions at the time of the accident in question. This is because New York recognizes comparative negligence. Here, the amount of compensation that you can recover from the defendant can be reduced if you’re found to be partially at fault.
The way it works is that the judge or jury attributes a percentage of fault to you based on the evidence presented, and then your recovery is reduced by that amount. This can eat a significant chunk out of the money that you end up taking home.
Defending against comparative negligence
There are things that you can do to minimize the risk of a comparative negligence finding. For example, don’t be apologetic or make any admissions of wrongdoing following your accident. It’s best to just state the facts in as few words as possible to the police and the insurance company with which you’re dealing. Also, you may need an expert to testify as to the cause of the accident so that you can shift the focus back on the other driver.
Build the comprehensive personal injury claim that you need
There are a lot of issues that have to be addressed in a personal injury case. You need to be prepared to adequately deal with each of them. If you think that you could benefit from some help in doing so, you might want to consider reaching out to a legal professional who has a track record of success in handling these kinds of cases.