In the world of personal injury law, proving that another party was negligent
is a critical component of nearly any claim. Although many people understand
the dictionary definition of negligence, it can be far more complex as
a legal theory. In this blog, our New York personal injury attorneys discuss
the elements of negligence as it applies to car accident cases.
How is Negligence Defined?
When another driver is negligent behind the wheel of a car, truck, or other
vehicle, they have essentially acted in a way which is careless or reckless.
Typically, this will include any action that should not have been taken,
such as speeding excessively, as well as actions which were not taken
but should have been, such as stopping at marked intersection. Drivers
in New York have a responsibility to use reasonable care or caution while
driving, and failure to act in this way can potentially be negligence.
How is Negligence Proven?
While negligence is a fairly easy concept to understand, proving that another
driver acted negligently in court is an entirely different issue. There
are four basic elements of proving a negligence claim:
You must prove that the other driver was legally required to act responsibly
or reasonably careful. Typically, this can be relatively easy for your New York car accident lawyer
to prove, as the responsibilities of a driver are laid out clearly in
the NYS driver’s manual. For example, all drivers have a responsibility
to stop at a red light.
You must prove that the other driver was not careful. Once you’ve proven that the driver was required to act in a certain
way, you then must prove that they did
not act in that way at the time of an accident. Actions like running a red
light are obvious breaches of this “duty of care,” but other
situations aren’t so straightforward. In those cases, your attorney
must prove that the driver did not act in the same way that a normal,
reasonably prudent individual would act in the same circumstances.
You must prove that the other driver caused your injuries. Unsurprisingly, you must prove that a party actually injured you before
you can get compensation from them. This is often done through expert
testimony from doctors and other medical specialists, as well as with
your personal medical records.
You must prove that your injuries are eligible for compensation. Your New York car accident attorney can rely on medical records/bills,
property damage estimates, and expert testimony to prove that you actually
did suffer injuries which are eligible for recovery.
Pursue Justice For Your Injuries
If you’ve suffered serious injuries due to someone else’s negligent
driving, you owe it to yourself and your family to pursue fair compensation.
At Ivey Barnum & O’Mara, LLC, we believe that you’ve suffered
enough after a major crash – you shouldn’t be responsible
for the high cost of medical treatment, rehabilitation, and property damage
as well. When you retain our firm, you can expect skilled representation
from an attorney who is truly committed to your best interests.
Don’t settle for less than you deserve. Call our firm today at (203)
718-4002 to schedule your