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Comparative responsibility: What if the accident was partly my fault?

August 7, 2009

What if I’m partly to blame for the accident? This is a question that personal injury lawyers hear a lot when providing free legal assistance to a new client. The bottom line is good news for accident victims – you can still recover financial compensation even if you are partly to blame for your accident.

Texas uses what is referred to as the “doctrine of comparative responsibility.” Under the Texas comparative responsibility statute, also referred to as the proportionate responsibility statute, a jury is responsible for assigning a percentage of blame to each party involved in the accident. As long as the jury decides you are only 50% or less responsible for the accident, you can still recover damages for your personal injury.

It is important to remember, however, that the amount of compensation the jury awards you will be reduced by the percentage of your responsibility. For example, let’s say that the jury awards Plaintiff Jane Smith $10,000. But, the jury finds that Jane was 30% responsible for the accident. That means, Jane’s award will be reduce by 30%, and she will ultimately receive $7,000.

If you have been injured in an accident, even if you are partly at fault, contact us today. We provide free legal help to accident victims who are considering a Texas personal injury lawsuit. For your free consultation with a Texas personal injury lawyer, email us at or call our toll-free helpline at 1.866.705.7584.


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