Common Charlotte Accident Defenses
The attorney of an accident victim will pursue maximum compensation for that victim especially If the other party was at-fault. These include compensation for medical bills, property damages, lost wages, pain and suffering and other non-economic and economic losses. The lawyers and the insurance company of the at-fault party will use certain defenses to avoid paying the victims. Insurance companies in particular are usually more interested in collecting premiums rather than paying claims to non-policy holders. An experienced Charlotte accident lawyer can help you gather evidence that can help defeat all these defenses.
The Defenses The Other Side May Use
Defense attorneys will do everything possible to reduce or avoid liability in car accident cases in Charlotte. Some of the defenses they may use include:
- Statute of limitations: Plaintiffs in personal injury cases have to file suit within 3 years in North Carolina. If you file after that time period expires, the defense side may argue that you don’t have the right to file a suit.
- Contributory negligence: The defense may attempt to argue that you were partly to blame for your own injuries. Since North Carolina is a strictly contributory negligence state, you may not recover any damages if there is proof you were in any way at fault for your injuries.
- Causation: Plaintiff’s must prove that the defendant’s actions directly caused their injuries. That means you must show that you may not have gotten injured if the defendant had not acted in a negligent manner.
- Assumption of risk: This is mostly relevant in situations where there is a contract. But in a car accident situation, you may be considered to have “ assumed the risk” if you drive a vehicle that you know has a dangerous defect and end up getting injured as a result.
The plaintiff must also show that the vehicle operator had a duty of care to the plaintiff. They must also prove that the defendant breached that duty or care and that that breach caused the plaintiff’s injuries.
Understanding Contributory Negligence
Contributory negligence is the most commonly used defense in Charlotte. All the defense side has to do to be completely absolved from any liability, is provide evidence that the defendant was not solely at fault for the damages. North Carolina recognizes pure contributory negligence, which means that the plaintiff only gets compensation if the defendant was 100% at-fault for injuries. There are only three other states that are pure contributory negligence jurisdictions. In other states, as long as the at-fault party is 51% responsible for the accident, the victim is entitled to some compensation.
Insurance Companies And Contributory Negligence
The fact that you may not get compensation even if the other party was 99% at-fault for your injuries, is like music to the ears of insurance adjusters in Charlotte. Insurance companies will try to find evidence that you were partly to blame for the accident to avoid paying you. So contact your lawyer before you talk to your insurer or the insurance company of the at-fault party.