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Understanding comparative negligence in Kansas cases

People who have been seriously injured in a car accident in Kansas may benefit by understanding how degrees of negligence might be important. In assessing damages, juries will also assess the percentage of negligence held by each involved party, and the assessment may affect the plaintiff's ultimate recovery in a successful lawsuit.

In some car accidents, one person may be primarily at fault, but the other may also have shared a small degree of fault him or herself. In such a case, a jury's determination of the plaintiff's percentage of fault in the accident's cause will result in a reduction of his or her damages. This fault apportionment is called comparative negligence, a legal term of art used to describe such a division.

For example, if a plaintiff is determined to be 25 percent at fault while the other driver is determined to have been 75 percent at fault in the accident, the plaintiff's award recovery will be reduced by 25 percent. This means that in a case in which the jury awards $100,000, the plaintiff would then expect to receive $75,000 as his or her ultimate payment.

In some auto accidents that result in serious injury to a person, more than one driver may share a portion of fault. In the event that is the case, the percentage of fault attributable to each will determine the ultimate award paid to the plaintiff. Those who are seriously injured in a car accident may want to consult with a personal injury attorney regarding the facts of their individual case. Even if the injured person had a small degree of fault in the accident's cause, he or she may still be able to recover a portion of damages to compensate him or her for the losses sustained.

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