Cherokee Negligence

Oct 2013

I received a call today with a question about the law of negligence in Cherokee. I thought I would share the info:

Unlike the rest of North Carolina, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has adopted Comparative Negligence (Cherokee Code [C.C.] § 1-19). This means the Tribal Court (and other courts applying Tribal law) must weigh the negligence of the person injured and the defendant to determine the recover. In North Carolina any negligence by the person injured would bar recovery, except in certain narrow circumstances.

So, in Cherokee, the rules of liability are completely different from the rules outside of tribal land. Cherokee has adopted "pure comparative fault" so a plaintiff who was 90% to blame for an accident could recover 10% of his losses. Only 13 states have adopted pure comparative fault.