How Does My Own Fault Impact My Recovery?


 There are different types of recoverable damages available to injured seamen if proven at trial. However, the amount of your recovery depends greatly on whether or not you’d be attributed any ‘comparative fault’. Discover how it may affect the outcome of your lawsuit.

Seaman’s Comparative Fault Explained

‘Comparative fault’ serves to compare the fault of each party in a lawsuit. In other words, the judge or jury will attribute percentages of fault between the defendants and the crewmember. That is why a seaman’s recovery will be reduced by his or her comparative fault. 

If the judge or jury determines that you bear fault for your own injuries, then your award will be reduced by that percentage of fault. For example, if the defendants are 70% at fault and you are found to be 30% at fault for the injury-causing event, then you can only recover 70% of the damages you prove at trial.

Defendant’s Tactics to Shift the Fault

The defendants that you seek to hold responsible for your damages will attempt to minimize your claim by blaming you. They will try to shift the majority of the fault to you, so they can reduce the amount of damages they’d owe you otherwise. This is why it is important to hire an experienced maritime personal injury attorney who can defend you against such defendants’ attempts. 

Moreover, if your employer mishandles your maintenance and cure claim, you might be entitled to another type of damages. Learn more about getting ‘punitive damages’.