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What Exactly Does Negligence Mean?

What Exactly Does Negligence Mean?

The term personal injury covers many different aspects.  In order to have a successful personal injury claim, negligence needs to be established.  How exactly do you do that?  Moreover, how does the law determine and define negligence?  According to www.law.cornell.edu, negligence is defined as:

A failure to behave with the level of care that someone of ordinary prudence would have exercised under the same circumstances.  The behavior usually consists of actions, but can also consist of omissions when there is some duty to act (e.g., a duty to help victims of one’s previous conduct).

Generally, negligence occurs when an individual fails to act as an ordinary and reasonable individual would under the same circumstances.

What is Negligency Legally?

There are four elements that need to be established in order to prove negligence.  Those elements are:

  1. Duty;
  2. Breach of Duty;
  3. Causation; and
  4. Damages.

Duty is an obligation of an individual to exercise care towards others or act in a certain way.  Typically, this is the easiest element of negligence to prove.  Breach of Duty is displayed by providing facts to show that an individual failed to behave with reasonable case or actions that ordinary prudence requires.  Causation requires you to show that the injuries or damages you suffered are a consequence of another’s negligence.  Often, experts are hired to help establish causation.   Finally, you will have to show concrete evidence of the harms you have suffered.  Your lawyer will help you establish a monetary amount of your damages and may utilize your medical records, medical bills, and employment records to help substantiate this portion of our claim.

What are some examples of negligence?

  • A driver of a vehicle, it could be someone who fails to stop at a red light;
  • A dog owner whose dog bites someone walking in front of their home;
  • A medical professional who misreads a study or laboratory results;
  • A pharmacist who incorrectly fills a wrong prescription;
  • A store owner who fails to put up a caution wet floor sign when a spill has occurred; or
  • A building owner who does not make necessary repairs to unsteady stairs or flooring.

If you have been injured as a result of someone’s negligence, call our office to discuss your options.  We will take the time to listen to the facts of your claim and provide you an open and honest assessment.

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