If you have looked into personal injury cases then you have certainly seen the word “negligent” used over and over again. But what does this word mean? And how does it affect your claim? Keep reading to get the basics, then contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 if you are in need of a free legal consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
The Definition of Negligence
When we refer to negligence, we are referring to the intent behind a person’s actions that led to an injury. In California, there are many types of intent that can cause injury: Purposeful, reckless, knowing, and negligent.
If a person acts purposefully to cause harm, they are subject to the strictest possible legal penalties. Second most severe is a situation in which a person acts recklessly, meaning they knew there was a serious risk that harm would occur if they took their action but acted anyway. The third most severe type of penalty goes to situations in which a person acted knowingly, which means that they knew there was a chance harm could occur.
All of the above requires that the person acted with knowing intent that an injury could or would occur. Negligence, on the other hand, does not require that the person in question had any wrongful intent, it only requires that they did not take proper caution or care and as a result an injury occurred.
The state of California requires four elements to prove liability:
- Duty. The person had an obligation to protect the public from unreasonable risk of injury.
- Breach. The person with duty of care breached that duty.
- Causation. The breach of care caused the injury. Also known as “but for,” this means that if it were not for the person’s actions or lack of action, the person would likely not have been injured.
- Damages. In order to sue a person for injury, you must be able to show that you suffered damages. This can include medical costs, repair costs for personal property, and more.
While it may sound complicated to prove negligence, the good news is that it is not your job – it is the job of your personal injury attorney.
Do You Have Cause for a Personal Injury Case?
If you were hurt due to someone else acting negligently then you may have a case. The next step is to contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation. We will carefully consider your case, listen to your side of the story, and find the best possible way to proceed. Call us today and we can get started right away.