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Comparative negligence in pedestrian, cycling accident cases

In our previous post, we looked at the concept of comparative negligence in pedestrian and cycling accidents. Comparative negligence can be an important aspect of accident cases where the pedestrian or cyclist is accused of failing to obey some rule of the road. A defendant making such an accusation would, of course, have to be able to provide evidence of the plaintiff’s negligence and then the extent of the plaintiff’s negligence would have to be determined.

In cases where there is evidence of a hit-and-run, one possibility for the plaintiff is punitive damage. Whenever a motorist is involved in an accident, he or she is required by law to stop and provide identification including driver’s license and insurance information, when such is required, as well as report the incident to law enforcement as soon as possible. 

It doesn’t matter how at fault the accident victim may have been for the accident and for his or her injuries. A motorist who leaves the scene of an accident can be held accountable not only criminally but also civilly for leaving the scene of an accident without providing identification and information. In civil cases, a plaintiff may be entitled to punitive damages, which are intended to punish the defendant for egregious behavior.

Establishing entitlement to punitive damages is not an easy matter. As we’ve mentioned previously, there must be some sort of malice, gross misconduct, fraud or dishonesty involved. This may involve making arguments about the defendant’s intention, which can get dicey. Those who are involved in a hit-and-run accident should always work with an experienced attorney to obtain assistance seeking all the damages to which they are entitled. 

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