Joint and Several Liability in Oklahoma

Oklahoma has done away with the doctrine of Joint and Several Liability with the sweeping passage of tort reform.  What does this mean for personal injury Plaintiffs?  Our firm practices in Eastern Oklahoma includes small towns like Roland, Muldrow, Sallisaw, and Vian in Sequoyah County Oklahoma, and frequently represent plaintiffs injured in automobile accidents.  Prior to the change in the law, if a person was injured due to no fault of their own by two or more parties they could collect their full damages from either at fault party.  Then any party paying damages  could file a subsequent action for contribution to allocate and determine the percentage of fault attributable to each party. 

In 2011 the Oklahoma legislature changed the law and eliminated Joint and Several liability.  This means that Plaintiffs who are free from fault will have a more difficult task in collecting damages from joint liability defendants.