A doctrine of common law that if a person was injured in part due to his/her own negligence (his/her negligence “contributed” to the accident), the injured party would not be entitled to collect any damages (money) from another party who supposedly caused the accident. under this rule, a badly injured person who was only slightly negligent could not win in court against a very negligent defendant. if joe tosspot was driving drunk and speeding and angela comfort was going 25 m.p.h. but six inches over the center-line, most likely angela would be precluded from any recovery (receiving any money for injuries or damages) from a car crash. the possible unfair results have led some juries to ignore the rule and, in the past few decades, most states have adopted a comparative negligence test in which the relative percentages of negligence by each person are used to determine damage recovery (how much money would be paid to the injured person).