Indiana Shared Fault Laws for Motorcyclists

  • November 21, 2019

Motorcyclists who endure devastating injuries in a collision with a motor vehicle of any kind may be hesitant to file a lawsuit if they are partly to blame for the cause of the accident. But in Indiana, sharing fault does not mean that you are not entitled to compensation for your suffering. 

Unlike states that practice pure contributory fault, which prevents bikers and other individuals who may have contributed to their accident from being awarded an injury settlement, Indiana is a modified comparative negligence state. We go into greater detail below about what it means to live in a modified comparative fault state and how your civil lawsuit might be impacted if you have played a part in the cause of your accident in Indiana.

Modified Comparative Negligence in Indiana

Motorcycle accident survivors can be partly to blame for their accidents and/or injuries in several different ways. Some examples could include:

  • Speeding
  • Failure to use a turn signal
  • Following too closely
  • Ignoring traffic laws
  • Drunk driving
  • Weaving in and out of traffic
  • Failure to wear a safety belt

These are just a couple of ways bikers could be responsible for an accident. Fortunately, Indiana is a modified comparative fault state, which means you can still be awarded compensation for all you have been through. With that being said, there are limits to the amount of fault you can carry, and if you exceed 50 percent of liability, you may lose your chance to obtain full compensation. 

What This Could Mean for Your Motorcycle Accident Claim

In most cases, the judge presiding over your civil lawsuit will determine how much fault you are responsible for. If you were driving 10 mph over the speed limit, for example, you might be found 20 percent at fault for the accident. Then, once your percentage of blame has been established, any amount that you are awarded in your claim will then be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Let’s say you were awarded $100,000 for your losses, and were 20 percent at fault. Your $100,000 award would be reduced by 20 percent, and your case would be resolved at a final injury settlement of $80,000.

If you have concerns regarding how much fault you might carry, your best option may be to consult with an Indianapolis car accident attorney or a motorcycle accident lawyer in your area to learn more about how your lawsuit could be impacted by Indiana’s modified comparative fault laws.