The Impact of New Jersey’s Modified Comparative Negligence Law
Under New Jersey law, anyone riding a motorcycle must wear a helmet while the bike is on the road. You can be ticketed for failure to do so, but what is the potential impact of not wearing a helmet on a personal injury claim? Suppose another motorist wrongfully turns into your path and causes you injury, but you aren’t wearing a helmet? Will you be unable to recover for your losses?
Comparative Negligence in New Jersey
In New Jersey, as in other states, when both parties have some degree of responsibility for the injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident, the legal concept of comparative negligence applies. Under the principle of comparative negligence, the court first calculates the full amount of your injuries and losses. The court then determines the extent to which your own actions contributed to your losses and assigns you a percentage of the fault. In a motorcycle accident, if you weren’t wearing a helmet, it’s likely the court will conclude that your failure to comply with New Jersey’s helmet law contributed to your injuries, particularly if you have head trauma.
Under New Jersey’s “modified comparative negligence” statute, if the court finds that you were more than 50% responsible for your injuries, you cannot recover anything at all.
Contact the Law Office of Howard D. Popper
For a free initial consultation to learn about your rights in a claim involving a motorcycle accident, contact our office online or call 973-993-8787 to set up an appointment. We have offices in Morristown and Newton. Currently, all our client communications are by phone, text message, and online videoconference.
We handle all nursing home neglect claims on a contingency basis. You won’t pay any attorney fees unless we recover damages for your losses.