3 Things to Know About Personal Injury & Nebraska’s Negligence Laws
Victims who have suffered injuries and other damages as a result of preventable actions have the legal right to hold at-fault parties accountable. Under personal injury law, you can recover compensation for damages that may include your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost income, and more when you effectively demonstrate that another person’s negligence caused your accident and the injuries you sustained.
At Carlson & Burnett, our personal injury lawyers have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for injured victims and families throughout Nebraska after they were hurt by negligence, including negligence that led to car accidents, serious injuries, and wrongful death. If you or someone you love has been hurt as a result of another’s careless actions, we are available to help you gain a better understanding of your legal rights and how personal injury cases work.
Generally, personal injury cases are based on negligence – meaning that you must prove another person was negligent in causing your accident. This can be achieved in various ways, depending on the facts of your case. For example, a driver who is distracted by their cell phone and causes a crash is considered negligent because they fail to uphold a standard of care most reasonable people would. A property owner who failed to address a potential danger they knew or should have known about can also be held accountable for their negligence if that danger causes a visitor or guest preventable harm.
Aside from understanding the importance of negligence as a central focus of your case, it is also important to know how Nebraska state law works when it comes to negligence and personal injury cases. Here are 3 quick points to help you understand:
- Nebraska uses comparative negligence – Nebraska uses the legal concept of modified comparative negligence in personal injury cases. Comparative negligence involves the comparison of fault and negligence between the parties involved. Even though a victim may have been injured, the accident could have been partially or entirely their fault, so the law is designed to protect against lawsuits where injured parties sue simply because they are injured, not because another’s negligence is what caused the accident. It also means that even if you did contribute to an accident in some way, you may still be entitled to compensation.
- Compensation may depend on your percentage of fault – Because the comparative negligence rule splits blame between the parties involved in an accident when both contributed to it, your compensation may be affected by how much at fault you are considered to be. If you were found 10% at fault for causing an accident and another motorist was 90% at fault, for instance, your compensation would be reduced by 10% because that is how much your negligence played a role in contributing to the crash. By this thinking, a $100,000 award for damages would be reduced to $90,000.
- You could be barred entirely from recovering – Under Nebraska law, victims can recover compensation as long as they are not found to be equally or more responsible for causing an accident. This 50/50 rule means that you cannot recover any compensation if you are found to be equally responsible (50% at fault) with the defendant for causing an accident, or if you are found more responsible than the other party (51% or more).
Personal injury law can be complex, which is why our Omaha personal injury attorneys make sure to thoroughly explain how the process works and to handle all legal work on your behalf while you concentrate on getting medical care and recovering from your injuries. To learn more about a potential personal injury case you might have and how our firm can help, contact us for a free consultation.