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What is comparative negligence?

If you are injured on someone else’s property and the premises was dangerous, you may feel you have the right to recover damages for your injuries. While you should not have to pay for someone else’s negligence, your perceived role in the accident could lead to less compensation.

Utah has a comparative negligence law, which means courts look at the accident in full to see how each party contributed to the injury. Even if you are considered at fault in any way, if the fault of the person you are suing exceeds yours, you can recover damages.

Fault determination

In a premises liability case, the court will decide what percentage you were also at fault. If they decide you did not contribute to the injury in any way, you can receive 100 percent of the compensation for the injury. However, if for example they decide you are 20 percent at fault, you would receive only 80 percent of the compensation.

Without proper evidence, injury victims who were hurt on someone else’s property can receive lower compensation. If you are injured on someone else’s property and you are not at fault, consider these tips to help your case:

  • Call the police right away so they can start a report
  • Have someone take photos of the property
  • Get the contact information of anyone who witnessed the accident so they can provide an account
  • Seek medical care immediately and follow any recommended treatment

Comparative negligence does not bar you from recovering damages, but it can lower your compensation without a full picture of the accident.

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