From motor vehicle accidents to slip and fall claims, the basis for holding a person or entity liable for harm falls under the legal concept of negligence. Establishing negligence in a personal injury claim can be a complex and challenging endeavor. Our experienced personal injury accident attorneys at Thomas, Conrad & Conrad have years of experience handling all types of personal injury cases and are committed to helping clients understand their rights under the law.
Elements Of A Negligence Claim
There are four key elements that must be explored in any negligence claim:
- Duty of Care
- Breach of Duty
- Duty of Care: The first step in establishing negligence in a personal injury claim is to show that the person or entity had a “duty of care” in the situation or circumstances that caused the injury, meaning that they exercised a reasonable level of care to prevent causing harm to others. For example, in a slip and fall case, the duty of care of the property owner or business means that they have a legal responsibility to keep their premises safe from hazards for all who enter.
- Breach of Duty of Care: Once duty of care is established, the injured party needs to demonstrate exactly how the negligent party failed to meet that duty. For instance, if a store owner fails to mop up a spill and someone slips and gets hurt, they have breached their duty of care to keep their premises safe.
- Causation: Proving negligence in a personal injury claim requires the injured party to show that the defendant’s negligence directly caused harm or injury. The concept of causation also takes into account whether the defendant could reasonably have foreseen that their actions or inaction might cause an injury. For example, if a defendant’s actions somehow caused injury due to an unforeseen act of nature, the defendant may not be found liable.
- Damages: Damages are the legal means of putting a value on injuries and losses caused by a defendant’s negligence. Damages in a personal injury lawsuit or insurance claim typically provide monetary compensation for expenses such as medical bills, lost income, property damage, pain and suffering, emotional distress and other damages.
How A Personal Injury Accident Attorney Can Help Establish Negligence
While some cases are cut and dried, it can often be difficult to establish and prove negligence in a personal injury claim. Each case is unique and having a personal injury accident attorney on your side is essential to ensure negligence is proven and your rights and interests are protected. Your attorney’s legal team will fully investigate the facts of your case, gather evidence such as police and incident reports, and consult with witnesses, medical professionals and any other relevant parties to create a cohesive argument that establishes the responsible party’s negligence.
If you’ve been injured or have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, our experienced personal injury accident attorneys will fight to establish negligence and recover the compensation you deserve. Call Thomas, Conrad & Conrad at 610-867-2900 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.