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Car accidents: Does Ohio have a contributory negligence law?

by | Apr 16, 2020 | Personal Injury

Most personal injury suits, especially those centered on car accidents, are built upon a foundation of negligence. For example, if a drunk driver collides with your car and you suffer injuries, you may acquire compensation through an injury claim. The other motorist was incapacitated at the time of the crash, which is a clear example of driver negligence.

But what if you also played a negligent role in your car accident? Examples include:

  • Driving over the speed limit
  • Texting while driving
  • Driving without adequate exterior lighting (particularly in a nighttime crash)
  • Running a traffic sign or signal

Like most other states, Ohio has a comparative negligence law. This means that the amount of compensation you can acquire for your car accident injuries may be limited. The works by comparing your percentage of fault in the accident against the other motorist’s negligence. If fault or negligence on your part is found to be 50% or higher, compensation may be out of your reach.

For best results in acquiring the maximum amount of compensation the law allows, it is smart to work with an attorney throughout your claim. Your lawyer can help you uncover all facts associated with the crash and can often work to lower the percentage of negligence on your behalf.

Investigating the accident through the eyes of a legal professional may also uncover all forms of negligence on the other motorist’s part. For example, if the other driver was intoxicated and also speeding, it may increase his or her negligent role and possibly lower yours.

Many car accidents result in severe, life-changing injuries to victims. It makes sense to do all you can to acquire the compensation necessary to recover from your injuries.


Nathan J. Stuckey