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Comparative negligence and your right to compensation

A lot of what we know about the law comes from what we see on television shows and in movies. Take for example motor vehicle accidents. Movies and television tell us that someone will be considered at-fault for the crash. If a victim appears to have been at fault, then they cannot recover damages for their injuries. This can be incredibly problematic in serious crashes, such as those between bicyclists and vehicles.

Unfortunately, this stereotype sends the wrong message to bicyclists in Kentucky. In fact, it may even affect an accident victim's decision to talk to an attorney, file a claim with the insurance company or take legal action against the vehicle's driver. In order to understand your rights after a crash in Kentucky, you need to understand comparative negligence.

What is comparative negligence?

Kentucky is one of thirteen states that recognizes pure comparative fault, also referred to as comparative negligence. This rule allows a victim to collect damages, even if they are found to be partially at fault for the accident. The pure comparative negligence rule in Kentucky even allows an accident victim to collect damages if they are up to 99 percent at fault for the crash.

It's important to note that if a victim is found at fault for an accident, then their portion of blame is subtracted from their total recovery. This means that they may not be able to cover the full extent of their damages, which can include lost wages and medical expenses.

Riding safely can reduce your degree of fault

Riding on the correct side of the road, yielding to traffic, obeying traffic signs and steering clear of unsafe traffic areas are just a few of the ways you can reduce your risk of getting into an accident with a vehicle and therefore the degree of fault you may be held to.

Of course, even if a bicyclist wasn't in the wrong, a driver may still try to displace blame. In such circumstances, it may be best for an injured bicyclist to turn to a lawyer who can help protect their rights and secure fair compensation.

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