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What are the different types of negligence?

You have probably heard from someone in Rossville that we live in a litigious society where everyone is looking to sue. What is lost in that assumption is that very often, the accidents and resulting injuries that people suffer often leave them facing inordinate expenses. If the events that caused such maladies were due to the negligence others, then it may be understandable why those who suffer through them would want to hold the responsible parties accountable. 

Personal injury tort cases represent a varying portion of the civil caseloads seen from state-to-state (information shared by the National Center for State Courts shows them to account for as low as 1 percent in some areas, and as high as 25 percent in others). At the heart of a majority of these cases is likely a question of negligence. The type of alleged negligence involved will often determine the potential compensation one might collect. 

There are four generally accepted forms of negligence

  • Comparative: If you are the one bringing an action based on comparative negligence, you recognize a certain degree of fault on your part. The defendant can then only be held responsible proportionate to his or her percentage of fault. 
  • Contributory: In a contributory case, you cannot collect compensation if your degree of fault is greater than 50 percent. 
  • Gross: When citing gross negligence, you claim that a defendant showed a complete lack of concern for your safety.
  • Mixed: Mixed negligence combines the comparative and contributory principles, allowing you to seek compensation for a percentage of damages when you were more than 50 percent at fault.  

The type of negligence recognized in tort cases depends on the state of jursdiction. Georgia, for example, follows the philosophy of contributory negligence.