Law Office of Michael Tonder, P.C.

65 Pineville Road, Suite 2
Monroeville, AL 36460

P.O. Box 337
Excel, AL 36439‎

251.302.2228


The deck is stacked

And it’s not in your favor.

Unless you have been living under a rock for the last 40 years, you know that if you are injured in an automobile accident that was not your fault, you probably are entitled to damages for any injuries you suffer. The attorneys on T.V. tell us this 100 times per day.

But as with most things in the law, it’s never quite as easy as it seems.

Many times fault is easy to determine. Maybe you clearly had the right of way. Sometimes it gets a little fuzzy.

Both drivers were texting when the accident happened.

Hmmm. That changes things.

Most states use a comparative negligence standard that apportions damages based on the percentage of fault. But not Alabama.

Alabama is one of a handful of states that still adheres to the old common law contributory negligence rule.

What is contributory negligence?

Contributory negligence can bar an injured party from recovering anything if they are found to have contributed to the accident or injury. Just to show the absurd results of the contributory negligence rule, in a comparative negligence state, if the plaintiff is 30% negligent and the defendant is 70% negligent in causing damages, the plaintiff could recover up to 70% of the damages.

Seems pretty fair.

In our great state, if the plaintiff is 1% negligent and the defendant is 99% negligent, the contributory negligence rule can prevent the plaintiff from recovering ANYTHING. There are exceptions, but they are few and far between.

Makes around as much sense as a screen door on a submarine, doesn’t it?

If you live in Monroeville, Evergreen or Atmore and are injured, please contact me.

No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements.