How does the state whose law will be applied treat multi-source negligence

How does the state whose law will be applied treat multi-source negligence?

Your claim may turn on how your state deals with multi-source negligence. By “multi-source” I refer to negligence by more than one person. The usual legal word “party” cannot be used here. The reason is that in most states the negligence of non-parties is part of the equation. This underscores why it is important to make a claim against all possible sources — because if you leave out someone, in most states you will be penalized because that person’s degree of negligence will reduce your compensation even though the person will not be obligated to pay you.

There are four general doctrines throughout the United States for dealing with multi-source negligence. They are referred to as the doctrines of contributory negligence, pure comparative fault, mixed comparative fault with a 50% threshold, or mixed comparative fault with a 51% threshold. (It is the other dog owner whose fault has to reach that threshold. In other words, in a 51% state, the fault of the other party or parties must be 51% or more. If it is only 50%, you will not be permitted to recover anything.) Interestingly, the word “fault” is used instead of negligence, but still, many lawyers will say “comparative negligence.”

So, what doctrine has your state adopted? Look on this list, and then write it on your Case Brief. You don’t have to write the information in the parentheses unless you want to look up the law yourself.

ALABAMA — pure contributory negligence (Alabama Power Co. v. Schotz, 215 So.2d 447 (Ala. 1968))

ALASKA — pure comparative fault (Alaska Stat. §§ 09.17.060 & .080)

ARIZONA — pure comparative fault

ARKANSAS — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Ark. Code Ann. § 16-64-122)

CALIFORNIA — pure comparative fault (Li v. Yellow Cab, 119 Cal. Rptr. 858 (1975))

COLORADO — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Colo. Rev. Stat. § 13-21-111)

CONNECTICUT — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Conn. Gen. Stat. § 52-572(h))

DELAWARE — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (1 Del. C. § 8132)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA — contributory negligence (Wingfield v. People’s Drug Store, 379 A.2d 685 (D.C. 1994)

FLORIDA — pure comparative fault (Fla. Stat. § 768.81(2))

GEORGIA — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Ga. Code Ann. § 51-11-7)

HAWAII — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Haw. Rev. Stat. § 663-31)

IDAHO — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Idaho Code § 6-801)

ILLINOIS — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Ill. Comp. Stat. § 735 ILCS 5/2-1116)

INDIANA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Ind. Code § 34-51-2-6)

IOWA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Iowa Code § 668.3(1)(b))

KANSAS — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 60-258a(a))

KENTUCKY — pure comparative fault (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 411.182)

LOUISIANA — pure comparative fault (La. Civ. Code Ann. Art. 2323)

MAINE — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. Tit. 14 § 156)

MARYLAND — contributory negligence (Board of County Comm’r of Garrett County v Bell Atlantic, 695 A.2d 171 (Md. 1997))

MASSACHUSETTS — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshhold (Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 231, § 85)

MICHIGAN — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Mich. Comp. Laws § 600.2959 (at 51% fault, plaintiff’s economic damages reduced and non-economic damages are barred)

MINNESOTA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Minn. Stat. § 604.01, subd. 1)

MISSISSIPPI — pure comparative fault (Miss. Code Ann. § 11-7-15)

MISSOURI — pure comparative fault (Gustafson v. Benda, 661 S.W.2d 11 (Mo. 1983))

MONTANA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Mont. Code Ann. § 27-1-702)

NEBRASKA — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Neb. Rev. Stat. § 25-21,185.11)

NEVADA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 41-141)

NEW HAMPSHIRE — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 507:7-d)

NEW JERSEY — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (N.J.S.A. 2A:15-5.1)

NEW MEXICO — pure comparative fault (Scott v. Rizzo, 634 P.2d 1234 (1981))

NEW YORK — pure comparative fault (N.Y.C.P.L.R. 1411)

NORTH CAROLINA — contributory negligence (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 99B-4(3))

NORTH DAKOTA — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (N.D. Cent. Code § 32-03.2-02)

OHIO — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Ohio Rev. Code § 2315.19(B)(4))

OKLAHOMA — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (23 Okla. Stat. Ann. § 13)

OREGON — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Or. Rev. Stat. § 18.470)

PENNSYLVANIA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (42 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. § 7102)

RHODE ISLAND — pure comparative fault (R.I. Gen. Laws § 9-20-4)

SOUTH CAROLINA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Nelson v. Concrete Supply, 399 S.E.2d 783 (1991))

SOUTH DAKOTA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (S.D. Codified Laws § 20-9-2, using the word “slight” instead of a percentage)

TENNESSEE — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (McIntyre v. Balentine, 833 S.W.2d 52 (Tenn. 1992))

TEXAS — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Tex. Civ. Prac. Rem. Code §§ 33.001-33.017)

UTAH — mixed comparative fault — 50% threshhold (Utah Code Ann. §§ 78-27-37 & 78-27-38)

VERMONT — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (12 Vt. Stat. Ann. § 1036)

VIRGINIA — contributory negligence (Baskett v. Banks, 45 S.E.2d 173 (Va. 1947))

WASHINGTON — pure comparative fault (Wash. Rev. Code §§ 4.22.005-015)

WEST VIRGINIA — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Bradley v. Appalachian Power Co., 256 S.E.2d 879 (W.Va. 1979))

WISCONSIN — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Wis. Stat. § 895.045(1))

WYOMING — mixed comparative fault — 51% threshold (Wyo. Stat. § 1-1-109(b))

Select from one of the following:

I am in a contributory negligence state.
I am in a pure comparative fault state.
I am in a “mixed” comparative fault state with a 50% threshold.
I am in a “mixed” comparative fault state with a 51% threshold.