How Does New Jersey Use Comparative Negligence Laws for Car Accidents?

Car Accident: Both Parties at Fault, Can I Collect Damages?

Sometimes, car accidents happen so quickly that it is difficult to determine which party was at fault. And more often than not, both parties are to blame. Continue reading to discover how comparative negligence laws factor into personal injury claims in New Jersey and how a seasoned Morris County car accident attorney at Lutz Injury Law can help you determine if you are eligible to receive compensation for your car accident injuries.

How does the state of New Jersey define comparative negligence?

The state of New Jersey uses the comparative negligence law, which has the jury determine the percentage of fault for each party involved in the personal injury claim. In other words, in the instance that you were found to be partially negligent and, therefore, partially responsible for your own injuries in the car accident, the law allows you to recover damages, for medical bills and lost wages, based upon the percentage of negligence attributable to you. For example, if the jury determines that you were 20% at fault and the other party was 80% at fault, and they award $100,000 in damages, the amount you will receive will be adjusted to $80,000.

The one condition with New Jersey’s comparative negligence law is that if your negligence is deemed greater than the negligence of the other party, then you will not receive any compensation. So, if you are found 51% at fault and the other party is 49% at fault, then you will be considered the liable party.

How does New Jersey determine fault in car accidents?

With the comparative negligence law in place, fault in car accidents is determined on a case-by-case basis. The following are some examples of evidence you can collect to prove fault by the other party:

  • They hit your car from behind.
  • They violated a traffic law, such as running a red light, turning at a no-turn on red, or speeding.
  • They made comments admitting or implying personal blame after the accident.
  • They displayed a level of impairment due to drugs or alcohol.
  • They failed to keep a proper lookout due to distracted driving.

If you have been injured in a car accident, and even if you believe that you may be partially at fault, do not hesitate in reaching out to a knowledgeable Morris County automobile accidents attorney today to fight for the financial compensation you rightfully deserve.


If you have been the victim of the negligence of another in an accident, please contact my office as quickly as possible following the subject accident. It is important to consult with us early on so that we may begin the process of fighting for your rights in regard to any potential claim that you may have. The process is complicated and requires the expertise of a qualified New Jersey personal injury attorney. Contact Lutz Injury Law today.

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