If you are the victim of a motor vehicle accident, Connecticut law states that you can get compensation. Connecticut law indicates that injuries will get compensated for with money. This money goes to the victim from the at-fault driver. If you win your case, you will receive compensation. All injuries, harms, and losses will receive compensation in the form of money.

Money as Compensation

As a victim of a negligent driver who has caused you injury or harm, you have a right to compensation. This money should help with your injury or loss. The state did not make this law to punish the negligent driver. Instead it is a way to make up for damage caused to a victim. It is not considered a reward for the victim. It is compensation meant to pay for physical therapy, doctor’s appointments, and other medical expenses. These expenses arise due to the at-fault driver’s negligence. The money could also compensate for an inability to work due to the injury. The government wants to put you in the same position you would have been had the driver not been negligent. This happens through the payment of money from the offending doctor to the victim.

Types of Compensation

In Connecticut, any injuries or losses resulting from a car accident that is not your fault go in two categories. These categories are economic damages and non-economic damages. They get determined by the court system and a hearing. As a victim of an accident, it is in your best interest to hire a lawyer who is familiar with personal injury cases. This is because you will most likely have to appear in court. Hiring a lawyer can help you to build a strong case that will get you what you deserve out of the case. Keep in mind that there is really no other way to compensate for serious injury or death. The best way is making the offending doctor pay compensation money to the victim. This means that as a victim, you can’t get compensation for your pain or loss in any other way than getting money.

Partial Fault

If you share fault for an accident that left you injured, you might wonder if you can receive compensation. Even if you contributed to an accident, you might still receive some compensation. Some states don’t allow you to collect damages in this situation. But, some states do. It is important to know the rules that apply in your state.

The state of Connecticut uses the “modified comparative negligence.” This doctrine is codified in C.G.S. § 52-572h(b), which states:

“In causes of action based on negligence, contributory negligence shall not bar recovery in an action by any person or the person’s legal representative to recover damages resulting from personal injury…if the negligence was not greater than the  combined negligence of the person or persons against whom recovery is sought including settled or released persons under subsection (n) of this section. The economic or noneconomic damages allowed shall be diminished in the proportion of the percentage of negligence attributable to the person recovering which percentage shall be determined pursuant to subsection (f) of this section.” (Lexis 2014)

Although it is wordy, this statute is fairly simple. It means that you can’t bring a personal injury claim in Connecticut if you were more negligent than the defendant. If you were not more negligent than all of the defendants, you can recover appropriate damages. The amount of damages you can receive lowers based on the percentage of your negligence. In sum, Connecticut law compares your negligence to that of others involved in the accident.

Types of Negligence Systems

This type of modified comparative negligence approach, used in Connecticut and other states, is referred to as the “51% rule”. This happens because a plaintiff can’t recover damages once they were 51% at fault in causing the accident.

Some states that use modified comparative fault follow the “50% rule” instead. This means that you can only recover damages if you are 49% or less at fault for the accident.

Other states follow the “pure comparative negligence” system. Under this system, the judge or jury gives a percentage of fault to each party involved. They award damages according to this percentage. In a state that uses pure comparative negligence, you can receive damages even if you were 99% at fault for the injury.

A small number of states still use the “pure contributory negligence” system. Under this system, you can only recover if you didn’t contribute to the accident in any way. This approach is much harsher than the three comparative negligence approaches.

Calculating Compensation

It is fairly easy to determine monetary compensation. This is because the victim can keep record of medical bills, loss of income, etc. But, it’s hard to put a price on the pain and suffering experienced by a victim of personal injury. To try to solve this problem, insurance companies created a formula for determining compensation.

In this formula, the company first adds up the monetary expenses lost or paid. This is the base figure. Then, the insurance adjuster adds in damages related to suffering and loss of opportunities. If the injuries involved in the case are minor, the base number will get multiplied by 1.5-2. But if the injuries are severe, or if they last for a long time, the base number can get multiplied by up to 5. During negotiation, you receive a quote for this number.