In Missouri, a person injured due to someone else’s negligence, such as a car accident, trucking accident, motorcycle accident, or slip and fall, can recover a portion of their damages even if he or she also had some fault in causing the accident. Although many states prohibit a person who is injured from collecting any of his or her damages if a jury or judge finds the injured person was more than a percentage threshold of fault, Missouri does not require such a threshold and follows the doctrine of pure comparative fault.
Understanding Comparative Fault
Under pure comparative fault, an injured person is entitled to the percentage of damages equal to the percentage of fault that the judge or jury accesses to the other party. For example, if a person is injured in a car accident and the judge or jury determines that the accident was 40% the fault of the injured driver and 60% the fault of the other driver, the injured driver may collect 60% of their damages from the other driver. This is true even if the injured driver is 99% at fault. If an injured driver is 99% at fault, the injured driver may collect 1% of their damages.
Many times, there are multiple parties whose fault contributed to an accident. In those situations, pure comparative fault still applies in Missouri. For example, if there is a situation where there are three parties at fault, including the injured party, the injured party may recover damages from the other two parties in proportion to their fault. Therefore, if a jury determines the fault of the injured party is 10%, the injured party may collect 90% of their damages from the other two parties in proportion to their fault.
Where multiple parties are at fault, the insurance companies for the negligent drivers often point fingers at the other parties as a tactic to try to avoid paying the injured party’s claim. At Dreyer & Tinney, we have over 30 years of experience handling cases involving the fault of multiple parties. We will fight the insurance companies to ensure that our clients are fully compensated by the responsible parties for their damages.
It is especially important in situations involving multiple parties that an experienced attorney is contacted as soon as possible in order that evidence can be collected and preserved.
Contact Dreyer & Tinney Today for a FREE CONSULTATION
Seeking counsel from experienced attorneys becomes pivotal in ensuring a strategic and informed approach for just compensation. The unique dynamics of Missouri’s system reinforce the need for a thoughtful and intentional pursuit of resolution.
Call the personal injury attorneys at Dreyer & Tinney today at (417) 782-6822 or fill out our contact form for a free legal consultation about your case.