Partial Fault Wrongful Death Claim

In this educational video, experienced Mississippi injury lawyer Brad Morris discusses filing a partial fault wrongful death claim.

Question:

What is important to know about a partial fault wrongful death claim?

Answer:

Partial Fault Wrongful Death Claim Very frequently, when we’re dealing with personal injury and wrongful death cases, clients come to us with situations in which maybe the client or their loved one was potentially partially at fault for the injury. In other words, there’s a defendant involved that has primary responsibility or certainly some fault. Maybe an accusation has been made or just the reality is that the client or their family member who died share some portion of fault for what happened. The question that they ask is, in Mississippi, if a decedent in a wrongful death claim or a plaintiff in a personal injury claim is partially at fault, can you still proceed with that claim? The answer is yes.

In a wrongful death claim, even if that decedent shares some fault or any fault, they can still recover from the defendants that portion of fault that the defendants are liable for. Mississippi is what’s called a pure comparative fault state. To really understand what that is we would have to compare it to the other option, which is a comparative negligence state, or contributory negligence state. In those states, under the law, if the plaintiff/victim were injured and had any fault whatsoever, even just one percent of fault, they would not be allowed to recover anything from the defendant.

Some states modified that to where as long as the plaintiff wasn’t more responsible than the defendant, they could recover. In other words, as long as the plaintiff was anywhere from 1 to 49% at fault, they could still recover from the defendant, as long as the defendant was more than half at fault. What Mississippi has now is called pure comparative fault. What that means is that under any scenario, if a person is injured and another person or company has some portion of fault for that injury, the injured person can recover for the percentage of fault that that other defendant is liable for. Let me give you an example.

Say in a car wreck there is a situation where in looking at a case you can assign that there is 50/50 fault between the two parties for what happened. One party was not injured, but one party was. Let’s say the party that was injured had $100,000 in damages – medical bills, car damage, lost wages, etc. Because they were injured and the other party was not, that’s $100,000 in damages to the injured party, but they are both 50/50 liable. Under that scenario, the party who was injured would be entitled to recover half of the value of their injuries, 50%, from that other party who is 50% liable. The party who was injured would be able to recover $50,000 of the $100,000 in injuries from that other party who was 50% liable for the wreck – that’s pure comparative fault. That’s the law in Mississippi.

If you’re in a situation where you’ve been injured and where fault is contested and there could be some challenges to the recovery, then it’s important that you have legal counsel who understands the ins and outs of personal injury law in Mississippi and has some experience successfully getting recoveries for clients in those situations. You want adequate representation on your claim. The Brad Morris Law Firm is available to answer your questions, and we offer free consultations on any personal injury or wrongful death claims. We’re available if you need us.


Have you lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence and have questions about filing a partial fault wrongful death claim?
Contact the experienced Mississippi wrongful death attorneys at Brad Morris Law Firm, PLLC today for a free consultation and case evaluation.
Let our experience work for you.

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