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Contributory Negligence in an Alabama Semi-Truck Crash

— February 24, 2022

Under a system of contributory negligence, plaintiffs are banned from filing lawsuits if they contributed to their own accidents in any way.

If you have been involved in an Alabama truck crash, you may have heard the phrase “contributory negligence.” But what exactly does this mean, and how can it affect your ability to recover compensation for your injuries? Make no mistake, this is one legal concept you need to tackle as you file a personal injury lawsuit. At the very least, a basic understanding of how this works is necessary to move forward in an effective, confident manner. 

If you’re intent on filing a personal injury lawsuit after suffering injuries in a semi-truck crash, you need to get in touch with an attorney as soon as possible. The statute of limitations may prevent you from taking action if you wait too long, so it’s best to be proactive and move quickly. Once you have connected with one of these legal professionals, you can begin to plan out exactly how you’re going to tackle issues like contributory negligence. 

What is Contributory Negligence?

Under a system of contributory negligence, plaintiffs are banned from filing lawsuits if they contributed to their own accidents in any way. Let’s say you were texting and driving at the time of your semi-truck crash. Under a system of contributory negligence, you would not have the ability to file a lawsuit. Even if you could prove that your own negligence was only 1% responsible for the crash, you would not be able to pursue compensation.

Light pole; image by Chris Knight, via
Light pole; image by Chris Knight, via

Contributory negligence is only used in a handful of states, and the other states follow a system of comparative negligence instead. Under this system, plaintiffs can file personal injury lawsuits even if they were partially responsible for their crashes. In Alabama, you can only sue after a truck accident if you were literally doing nothing wrong at the time of the accident. Often, a qualified attorney is needed to prove that you were completely faultless in the moments leading up to the accident. 

An Example of a Truck Accident in Alabama

Contributory negligence can be especially problematic in multi-vehicle crashes. On November 17th, it was reported that a multi-vehicle crash had occurred in Tuscaloosa County which had been sparked by a lawnmower hitting a light pole. When the light pole fell into the road, several vehicles — including a number of commercial trucks — swerved to avoid it and impacted each other. Determining liability in this situation could be challenging under the state’s contributory negligence laws. 

Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today

If you’ve been searching the Huntsville area for a qualified, experienced truck accident attorney, there are many options available to you. Get in touch with one of these legal experts as soon as possible, and you can start working towards a positive legal outcome. Remember, you can receive a considerable settlement as a result of your lawsuit. You can use this settlement to pay for medical expenses, missed wages, and many other damages. Book your consultation today and go over your legal options with a qualified attorney. 

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