Washington, DC asked in Car Accidents for District of Columbia

Q: I am a biker who collided with a car parked closer then required 30ft to an intersection. Who is liable for the incident

Car has minor damage to taillight. I am really banged up. They are trying to get me to pay for all damages to the car. While I’m not necessarily interested in going after them, it seems that they are liable for my injuries. Please clarify liability.

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1 Lawyer Answer
John Mesirow
John Mesirow
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Washington, DC
  • Licensed in District of Columbia

A: Fortunately, the law in DC for collisions like this changed in 2016. Before that time, if you were even 1% at fault (and therefore "contributed" to the collision), you were barred from recovering anything. Now, per the statute below, that defense (contributory negligence) cannot be asserted if you were less negligent than the defendant(s).

More information is needed to express an informed opinion as to the strength of your claim. Consult a DC personal injury lawyer to discuss the facts of your collision in more detail. I hope you feel better.

50–2204.52. Contributory negligence limitation.

(a) The negligence of a pedestrian, bicyclist, or other non-motorized user of a public highway involved in a collision with a motor vehicle shall not bar the plaintiff's recovery in any civil action unless the plaintiff's negligence is:

(1) A proximate cause of the plaintiff's injury; and

(2) Greater than the aggregated total amount of negligence of all of the defendants that proximately caused the plaintiff's injury.

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