The linchpin of any personal injury lawsuit lies in the plaintiff being able to prove that the defendant’s negligence caused the plaintiff’s injuries. Although this may seem simple enough, proving negligence in court can be tricky, as it involves the plaintiff proving that the following:
- The defendant had a duty of care with respect to the plaintiff: A duty of care refers to the legal obligation that is imposed on one party and requires that party to act with a reasonable amount of care so as to avoid doing something that would predictably injury another party. For example, while the manufacturer of a product has a duty of care to safety test their products for consumers who may eventually buy and use that product, businesses likewise have a duty of care to provide safe working conditions to employees. The foundation of proving negligence in a personal injury case involves proving that the defendant had a duty of care to the plaintiff.
- The defendant failed to abide by the duty of care: The next step in proving negligence involves establishing that the defendant did not respect the duty of care to which he was legally obligated. An example of failing to abide by a duty of care could be a truck driver failing to obey traffic laws and/or imbibing alcohol or taking drugs while on duty.
- The defendant was indeed responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries: The final element crucial to proving a defendant’s negligence in a personal injury case involves establishing that the defendant’s actions were, in fact, the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries. Depending on the specific case at hand, proving this component can be tricky, as the plaintiff will also have to establish that some other factor did not actually cause the injury. In the example of the truck driver breaching his duty of care, the plaintiff will have to prove that the truck driver caused an accident that directly resulted in the plaintiff’s injuries; the plaintiff may also have to establish that he was not driving recklessly, breaking the laws or driving a vehicle that malfunctioned when the accident occurred.
At the Law Office of Mike Hulen, PC, our trusted Denver personal injury attorneys have a proven track record of establishing negligence and helping accident secure the maximum possible settlement for their injuries and losses. We encourage victims to meet with us for a free initial consult to learn more about their legal rights and to receive a thorough evaluation of their case. If you have been injured in any type of accident caused by another person’s negligence, call us at (303) 932-8666.