A question of "contributory negligence"

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by fishgutzy, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. fishgutzy

    fishgutzy Senior Member Supporting Member

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    A case I got called for jury duty on was regarding the damages part of a car accident.
    The guy had admitted fault but the plaintiff rejected the damage amount the insurance company was willing to pay. So she sued the guy personally.
    The plaintiff was a morbidly obese woman who likely already had severe back and health issues before getting hit.
    I was booted by the defense right after I said my wife got rear ended at a stop light by a guy that was looking at the police cruiser across the street rather than the road.
    I know NC is a rare "contributory negligence" state. Before getting booted, it had already occurred to me that this morbidly obese woman's physical condition caused her injuries more than the car accident.
    Can one even consider that in such a case?
    The case form VA reminded me of this. In that case, the person who died was 4'11" and 330 pounds, died of a heart attack, not her injuries. She was a walking dead person already. Typical of the ANTIFA-feminist wackos.
     
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  2. dmarbell

    dmarbell Sensei of Humor Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    In the vein of "I'm not a gynecologist, but I'll have a look." A morbidly obese woman riding down the road may or may not be injured. After the accident, an MD can determine whether her injuries were caused by the accident. If caused by the accident, then who contributed to the accident is who is responsible, based on my understanding of contributory negligence.
     
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  3. HMP

    HMP Well-Known Member

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    While the person may have been extremely large, I dont think you can assume any injuries unless it's been documented/backed up by a physician.
    Same for the Charlottesville lady - sure, she was big and had a heart attack...after getting struck by a car.
    Maybe my line of thinking is wrong, but I dont think we can dismiss someone because of their size and what we THINK was wrong with them before the accident etc.
     
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  4. JimB

    JimB Picking it up slowly. Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    I absolutely think that you consider her physical condition, not that she was obese but if she went in with documented problems she shouldn’t recover for those.

    I’m also curious, but I think that while she may sue the guy, his insurance will represent him in the case at their cost.
     
  5. Pack72

    Pack72 Member

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  6. fishgutzy

    fishgutzy Senior Member Supporting Member

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    That was not clear in this case. It might also be a case where the guy only had the minimum coverage required. A bad move in any case.
    We had someone file a bogus injury claim. My son tapped a car that then tapped their car. No visible damage to any vehicle. The responding officer didn't even write a report. Then they filed their claim and they said I was driving. We sent pictures to our insurance company of the front bumper showing zero damage. And that was enough to prove they filed a false statement and it went away.
     
  7. Cowboy

    Cowboy Glances can deceive

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    Contributory neglegance would only be relevant to the actual accident in this case. But since she opened the door to it all it would take is 1% fault in NC.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
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  8. Cowboy

    Cowboy Glances can deceive

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    Also I would look for the jury to give very little if it seems she was being greedy.
     
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  9. B00ger

    B00ger Das B00G Charter Member Supporting Member

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    Agreed...

    In my opinion (paralegal classes were a while back):

    If they could show that her physical condition was in part responsible for the accident then contrib would stick. I.e. she couldn’t turn adequately to see cars in her blind spot, she couldn’t turn the wheel due to her stomach, or she failed to use her seat belt in such a way to make a reasonable accommodation of her girth.






    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  10. fishgutzy

    fishgutzy Senior Member Supporting Member

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    Side note. Germany's seat belt law is so strict that regardless who actually caused a car accident, if one driver did not have their seat belt on, they are automatically at fault. So if a drunk driver is wearing their seat belt, but the driver of a car they hit is not, the un-belted driver is at fault, even if that driver is killed by the drunk.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  11. georgel

    georgel Behind Every Blade of Grass Charter Member

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    I was in an accident in which Contributory Negligence was applied. I was waiting to turn left across traffic at at light. The light started changing and oncoming cars were coming to a stop, except one. The oncoming traffic consisted of two straight lanes and one turn lane. The guy in the turn lane stopped as did one of the straight lanes. The light was turning red at this point and I proceeded into the turn, as did the guy behind me. Then an oncoming vehicle, that had been far back behind the stopped vehicles came barreling through the intersection. Before she reached the intersection, I noted her speed and knew she wasn't going to stop, so I did, just short of center. Suddenly, she slams on brakes and skids into my car. The insurance company declined to pay, so then she sued. My attorney said she lost the case due to her contributory negligence in running the light and failing to stop.
    It's my understanding that contributory negligence applies when the other party could have avoided or prevented the incident had they not acted or failed to act in some manner. If someone pulls their car in front of you and you have ample time to stop, but you don't and run into them anyway, you are contributorily negligent. You had the means to prevent the incident, but you didn't. I don't think that applies to the OP's case here.
     
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  12. Catfish

    Catfish E Pluribus Mendacium Charter Member Supporting Member

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    @ the OP - I think we should be very cautious with the notion that neglecting one’s health be used against a person who is injured by someone else. It looks a whole lot like blaming the victim.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
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  13. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    If I ever get put in a jury, I can guarantee you that my sense of right and wrong and morals will take precedence over anything a tyrant in black robes says or what some politician has put to paper. I don’t give a good GD about those things.
     
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  14. georgel

    georgel Behind Every Blade of Grass Charter Member

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    They're not the problem. It's the other guys and gals in the room with you that don't agree with your reasoning. They're the problem.
     
  15. Bailey Boat

    Bailey Boat Senior Member Charter Member Benefactor Supporting Member

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    Moral of the story, if you're a fat ass don't have vehicle accidents....
     
  16. Cowboy

    Cowboy Glances can deceive

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    Why's it got to be a black thing man.
     
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  17. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    Hmm, the words, big. Black. Thing. Man. Sounds like the punchline to a joke.

    Ok. I swear upon... Will let's see...I swear upon this glass of wine that I'm drinking that if I ever get elected or appointed as a judge. I will wear a rainbow robe.

    The Emojis didn'tcome through
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2018
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  18. gunbelt

    gunbelt Sponsor Benefactor Charter Life Member Sponsor

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    You're one of those jury nullification types aren't you. :eek::D
    Good on you, America needs more Americans like your self.
     
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