Personal Injury 101: Learn What Negligence is and How to Prove It
One of the first terms you will see or hear when you are investigating personal injury law is “negligence.” Unless you have a legal background you likely do not know what negligence means in a legal sense, or when it affects a personal injury case. Keep reading to get the basics. If you believe you may have a ca se, contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.
The Definition of Negligence
When we use the term “negligence” we are discuss the intent behind conduct that resulted in injury. There are four types of intention: purposefully, recklessly, knowingly, and negligently. If a person acts knowingly then they generally face the hardest legal penalties. Reckless behavior involves a person taking an action despite their knowledge that doing so posed a substantial risk to others.
On the other hand, negligence does not require that the person who committed an act did so with any type of wrongful intent. It involves
In order to prove that a party was negligent in a car accident or other accident case, four elements must be proven. First, we must prove that the person who was at fault had a duty of care to the individual. This generally means that the person who was at fault had a duty to foresee that their actions or failure to act could have resulted in someone being injured.
Second, we must show that there was a breach in that duty of care. This occurs when a person does not follow what a reasonable person would do. This could include directly violating a statue or simply not acting as the courts determine a reasonable person would.
Third, we must show causation. Essentially, just because you were injured does not mean that the injury was caused by the action or inaction of the person in question. Causation involves us proving that the two are related. Sometimes this is referred to as a “but for” situation, in that we must prove that “but for” the actions or inactions of the at-fault party, the injury would not have occurred.
Finally, we must prove damages. Think of it this way: If a property owner leaves a huge hole in their yard, you cannot sue them for damages if you fell in and easily climbed out without injury. However, if you fell in and broke your leg, then you may be able to sue for those specific damages. We prove injury damages by using medical bills, lost wages, etc.
Have You Been Injured in an Accident? Call Now for a Free Legal Consultation
If you have been injured in an accident in which another party was entirely or partially at fault then we urge you to contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 as soon as possible. We will start with a free legal consultation so that you understand your options.