How are damages paid if more than one party is responsible for my injuries?

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Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia all operate under a joint and several liability rule for damages in civil cases. This means that every party who contributed to your injury is responsible for all of the damages -- such as medical expenses, therapy, lost income, and other costs associated with your injury (or injuries).  And this is true even if one party was more responsible than another. 

For example, say both an outside physician and a nurse employed by a hospital commit malpractice by violating patient safety rules, and a patient is seriously injured.  Even if the physician was 90% responsible, the hospital (as the nurse's employer) would still be responsible for paying all of the verdict, as long as a jury found both the physician and the nurse were negligent and that negligence caused the patient's harm.



Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer