List of summaries, consolidations and regulations
The Contributory Negligence Act
The Contributory Negligence Act provides that when two or more people are found at fault for causing certain damage or loss, they are legally obligated (i.e., liable) to make good the damage or loss:
The division of fault into proportions is decided by a jury or judge. The proportions of fault must equal 100%, but the whole 100% need not be limited to parties to the action - parties who are not sued may be responsible for the remaining percentage of fault.
The people found at fault are each liable to the claimant for the full amount of the loss or damage, but are legally obligated to compensate each other in the proportion they are found to have been at fault. If one of the parties found to be at fault is unable to pay the damages assessed against that party, the other parties responsible for the loss will share the shortfall according to the proportion they have been found to be at fault.
The Act also provides that when two or more people are found at fault, the person who suffered the loss or damage may deal with them separately. This means that a judgment against one person or a settlement with one person does not prevent an action against the other or others.