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Auto insurers still apply it in Maryland, which I know firsthand. My kid was, at a guesstimate, 85% responsible for a fender bender earlier this year. The other drivers was still liable for his damage, costing him his deductible and raising his rates. I, of course, got nothing out of this denial (I had to cover my own deductible and my rates will rise). All in all, I'd rather the other driver had recovered, since it wasn't his fault in the sense people mean the phrase.


On the other hand I've heard contributory negligence described as one step short of no-fault.

With everybody covering their own damages you eliminate the costs and time wasted in arguing over who is at (or more at) fault. In theory this is supposed to lead to lower insurance costs.

So maybe the other driver in your situation is paying a little more than they would have under comparative. But they have benefited all the while from lower insurance premiums. And next time maybe they'll be the one 85% at fault.

No-fault seems a good way to go *provided* all parties share a relative equal amount of culpability and risk.

Last week there was a guy with a kayak on Metro. No bikes allowed, but kayaks OK

No fault is simple and works if there is no information assymetry,similar levels of risk, culpability, and harm.

That is not appropriate for e.g, when a bad driver can come behind a cyclist and permanently disable them.

I agree.

If I recall accurately under Pennsylvania's no-fault system one could opt out on a case by case basis if a certain damage threshold was reached.

But for unprotected road users If I were king for a day I'd radically change things so that regardless of fault the motorist's insurer would cover the damages.

My thought is that the injuries suffered by people using the public roads almost entirely stems from one class of road users - motorists. If there weren't any cars how many people would get hurt?

So, in fairness, motorists, as a class, should bear the burden of the damage they are inflicting with one way being a required non-motorist coverage.

Good points. I remember my first holiday experience with a bicycle on metro 12 years ago. I had been volunteering in an Old Town museum and with the presence of a lightning storm, decided to take metro home. The station was not the least bit crowded and I had not considered that bicycles were not permitted. The station managers ejected me back into the lightning with the cruelty of a Disney movie and I gave up my gig volunteering there not long thereafter.

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