Did you suffer injuries after a serious auto accident? You might be wondering if you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver even if you failed to wear your seat belt. Whether by choice or due to forgetfulness, not wearing your seat belt doesn’t disqualify you from seeking compensation. Yet, you may be responsible for some of your injuries.
Texas Comparative Negligence Laws & Your Lawsuit
If you fail to wear your seat belt and suffer a car accident, you can still be found negligent, or failing to take proper care to avoid an accident or injury. The other party may claim that you’re at-fault for some of your injuries.
The state of Texas follows a modified form of comparative negligence, also known as proportionate responsibility. This means that if you’re found to be partially at-fault for your injuries, you may have your damages reduced by a percentage. Determining your percentage of fault will vary depending on your case.
For example, if you earn $250,000 in compensation, but the court determines not wearing a seat belt contributed to 25% of your injuries, you’ll only be awarded $187,500 in compensation. According to Texas law, if your percentage of responsibility is greater than 50%, you won’t be able to recover any damages at all.
Buckle Up: Protect Yourself Should a Serious Accident Occur
According to the CDC, seat belt use can reduce the risk of serious injury and death in a crash by half. Allow us to remind you that buckling yourself up could save your life. Plus, you can best protect your family by using the correct child restraints and reminding your passengers to click their belt.
You Need an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney
If you’ve been involved in an auto accident and you failed to wear your seat belt, it’s important to reach out to an auto accident attorney for help. After all, navigating comparative negligence requires experience.
Although you may be partly to blame, you still deserve compensation for your injuries and loss. For answers to your questions or for a free consultation, give us a call at 800-TedLyon
or send us a message.