Most often people don’t really know what contributory negligence means or for that matter really care…until they are involved in a car accident or some other type of personal injury here in the state of North Carolina. Contributory negligence is something the insurance companies love! In North Carolina, if a plaintiff is found even .1% at fault it means they are barred from collecting anything. So, even if you think liability is clear and the accident report seems to say liability is clear…the insurance company will without a doubt try to somehow see if they can allege contributory negligence.
According to an article written by Scott Sexton, many think that contributory negligence keeps insurance rates down. However, that is not truly the case.
“Comparative negligence is a nightmare to apply. Few people agree on the percent fault they are assessed, it increases lawsuits, is a cash cow for lawyers, and raises everyone’s insurance rates,” wrote one reader who works in the insurance industry. “If you haven’t noticed, N.C. enjoys some of the lowest auto insurance rates in the country.”
Good point. And it’s one worth exploring.
North Carolina does indeed enjoy consumer-friendly auto-insurance rates - the sixth lowest in the country, according to N.C. Department of Insurance.
That’s not, however, because of any sense of fair play by insurance companies nor because contributory negligence keeps costs down.
The credit goes to a man who next to nobody has heard of, state Insurance Commissioner Jim Long. He is basically the final word on insurance rates in North Carolina.
If you have been injured in a car accident in Raleigh, Cary, or elsewhere throughout the state of North Carolina, you may think dealing with the insurance carrier will be easy and effortless. Sometimes it can be…often times not so much. Contact the Law Office of D. Hardison Wood at 919-646-8155 so we can discuss how we may assist you.