Fault – How is fault determined in a North Carolina Car Accident:

  1. Pure Contributory Negligence: Also known as “comparative negligence” or “contributory negligence.”
    • North Carolina has adopted “pure contributory negligence” as a measure to determine the recoverable amount of damages an injured person may recover. In North Carolina, if it is determined that the injured person is at fault for any amount of his or her injuries, the injured person may not recover any damages for those injuries.
    • For example: Gayle and Margaret are in a car accident and Gayle is injured. It is determined that Gayle is 10% at fault (contributory negligent). Damages for her injuries equal $10,000. Under North Carolina pure contributory negligence, Gayle may not recover any amount of damages for her injuries as a result of her being 10% at fault.

North Carolina Car Insurance Requirements and Limits

  1. Bodily Injury Liability
    • minimum limit is $ 30,000 for one injured person
    • minimum limit of $ 60,000 for all persons in an accident
  2. Property Damage Liability
    • minimum limit is $ 25,000
  3. Underinsured/ Uninsured Motorist Coverage
    • minimum limits must be at least equal to your liability limits
      • note: for polices dated after February 1, 2010 a person may have minimum limits with lower limits, but not less than the minimum bodily injury and property damage limits required for the person’s car

North Carolina Small Claims Limit:

If a claim for damages in a car accident is $5,000 or less it should be assigned to the small claims court of the appropriate jurisdiction in North Carolina.

North Carolina Personal Injury Statue of Limitations:

In North Carolina, a person should bring a personal injury claim within three (3) years of the accident or within one (1) year for libel and slander, and two (2) years for wrongful death. Title 1, Section 1-52, 1-54.

North Carolina Statues Online: North Carolina Codes Online.

  1. North Carolina Accident and Personal Injury Laws:
    • Statue of Limitations for Personal Injury
      • North Carolina General Statutes, Title 1, § 1-52, 1-54.
    • Insurance Requirements:
      • North Carolina Motor Vehicle General Statutes, 20-279.21(b)(3) and (b)(4)
    • Small Claims Limits
      • North Carolina General Statutes, Art. 19, § 7A‑210
    • Claims Against Public Entities
      • North Carolina State Tort Claims Act, G.S. 143-300.1

North Carolina Car Accidents Reports

  1. Police Reports
    • Car accident reports investigated by all of North Carolina’s law enforcement agencies are forwarded to the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles. To obtain a certified copy of a police report, you will need to pay a fee of $5.00 and either call (919) 861-3098, make a request in person, or make a request in writing by filling out Form TR-67A to sending it to the Traffic Records Section of North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles.
  2. DMV Reports
    • For car accidents in North Carolina, if any person is killed or injured or the total damage to vehicle and other property appears to amount to $1,000 or more, you are required by law to make an immediate report to the nearest law enforcement officer or agency of any crash. In certain cases, the law also requires the driver of a car involved in a reportable crash to provide proof of liability insurance on forms provided by the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

Insurance Notification

Most auto insurance companies require prompt reporting of a car accident from their policy holders. If your insurance company is not notified within a VERY short timeframe, your insurance company may deny you of coverage for your car accident. Check with your insurance policy for notice requirements.

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