What does New Mexico’s pure comparative negligence approach mean?

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2023 | Car Accidents

The idea that the rights of motor vehicle accident injury victims are protected to varying degrees in different states is understandably shocking to many people. In an ideal world, the rights and interests of victims who have suffered physical harm due to another’s negligence, recklessness or intentionally dangerous conduct would be broadly protected everywhere. In the U.S., however, this isn’t the case. 

In a very small fraction of states, if an injury victim contributed to the cause(s) of their own harm to any degree whatsoever, they are effectively barred from seeking compensation for their injuries from those who were primarily responsible for what happened to them. 

In a majority of states, injury victims can only pursue compensation from others who directly contributed to the cause(s) of their harm if they were less than 49% or 50% – depending on the state – to blame. Meaning, if an injury victim is assigned 52% of the blame and the value of their harm is $2 million, they are on the hook for all of the financial consequences of their harm.  

Broad protections for auto accident victims

Thankfully, New Mexico’s pure comparative negligence approach affords accident injury victims maximum protection if they’re injured partially due to their own fault while in the state. This means that, in New Mexico, if someone is injured in a motor vehicle accident due partially to another’s negligent, reckless or intentionally dangerous conduct, they can hold that party responsible for their share of the blame, regardless of how fault is portioned in a case. 

Especially when the value of someone’s harm is significant, knowing that the law won’t hold them back from pursuing rightful compensation can make a huge difference to their financial and physical recovery. If you’ve recently been hurt in an accident, know that New Mexico’s broad protections give you every reason to explore your legal options. 



FindLaw Network
Nathan A. Cobb