As we head into the spring travel season in Middle Tennessee, traffic on our roads and freeways through the region often increases with drivers who don't know our roads or laws.
From time to time, it helps to review some of the legal issues that will frequently affect people at a most unexpected time in their lives. Car accidents never come at a good time but can throw your life into turmoil. It may help to review some of the laws regarding filing a personal injury claim.
While many car accidents are just a minor inconvenience involving vehicle repairs and filing reports with local law enforcement, there are just as many accidents in Tennessee that result in serious personal injuries that can have a lasting impact on an individual's lifestyle. In the event that a car accident leaves you with an injury that either prevents you from working or limits your quality of life, you may be eligible to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.
Tennessee is a shared-fault state, which means that the courts will determine who is at fault for the accident and what percentage of liability the drivers each may share, in the event of an injury or wrongful death.
Facts to Know About Modified Comparative Fault and Personal Injury Cases in Tennessee
•· Whether filing an insurance claim or seeking damages as a result of an injury, Tennessee residents are subject to modified comparative fault laws. These shared fault laws allow the courts to determine who was at fault in the accident, and how much fault they shared in the accident that ultimately resulted in an injury. For example, an individual who was injured may be found to be 30 percent at fault in an accident, while the opposing party may be found to be 70 percent at fault in the accident. The amount of fault determined by the courts will impact the damages that the injured individual receives in their lawsuit.
•· For example, the damages in the case may add up to about $10,000. The person who is 70 percent at fault will have to pay $7,000 in damages to the injured party, rather than the full $10,000. The amount that the injured person is determined to have shared in the fault is deducted from the total damages.
•· An injured person may only receive damages if they are found to be less than 50 percent at fault in the accident. If they are found to be more than 50 percent at fault in causing the accident, they will not receive damages.
•· It is important to work with an attorney who understands the modified comparative fault laws in Tennessee and who can provide you with the direction you need as you navigate the legal system. You also should recognize that these laws apply when it comes to determining a settlement in the process of insurance negotiations. Your attorney can provide you with the guidance and insight you need as you decide the best route moving forward after a car accident that results in an injury. In addition, your attorney will advocate for you in order to ensure that you receive the compensation that you deserve.
Given the physical and emotional trauma associated with car accidents, it is not surprising that many people do not have the time or resources necessary to advocate for themselves in the immediate aftermath of the accident. If you have been injured in a car accident in Tennessee, contact a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can evaluate the details of the accident, collect the evidence necessary to prove your case, and help you get the compensation that you both need and deserve in order to move forward. Instead of allowing an accident that results in an injury to dictate your ability to live a happy and productive life, work with an experienced attorney who will help you take control of your own narrative. For more information on personal injury law and shared fault in Tennessee, contact our law firm today to set up a consultation appointment with an experienced attorney.