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North Carolina is one of the very few states where the principle of contributory negligence applies in personal injury claims. Unlike comparative negligence (the standard used by a majority of states), the contributory negligence rule bars the victims of accidents and serious injuries from recovering damages if they have any degree of responsibility.

Contributory negligence imposes an unfair burden on people whose lives are turned upside down by the carelessness of others. In effect, the standard requires victims to be entirely blameless for the accident to recover fair compensation.

Thankfully, a change for the better is within reach. The Victims’ Fair Treatment Act (SB-477) was introduced in the North Carolina Senate. The bill seeks to enact legislation that will allow personal injury claimants to recover compensation even if they are partly responsible for the accident.

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