To have a valid personal injury claim, you have to be able to prove four things:
· An individual had a duty
· The duty was breached
· The breach caused harm
· An injury
The individual is the person who harmed you, and the duty varies from case to case. If you were in a car accident, the individual’s duty was to follow traffic laws. A homeowner’s duty may include keeping their property in a safe condition, following HOA or zoning laws, or keeping a dangerous dog secured in their yard. A retail store owner’s duty may be to keep the store in a safe condition and clearly label any hazards to customers. A healthcare provider’s duty is to act as a reasonable and prudent healthcare provider.
When any of these individuals does not carry out their duty, it’s called negligence. This doesn’t mean that they set out to harm you, but that their breach of duty led to harm. That breach was their responsibility.
Negligence is a sticking point in all personal injury cases except intentional harm cases. In these cases, there is usually a criminal case that is also being brought to deal with charges of assault, battery or other intentional harm. In these cases, as the name implies, there is no negligence. The individual intended to harm someone and did. Since damages don’t exist in criminal trials, the victim is allowed to bring a personal injury case in order to recoup the losses they suffered as a result of their injury.
In most personal injury cases, you must be able to prove negligence. Intentional harm cases are the only exception.
Robert Greening is the principal attorney at Greening Law, P.C. He has dedicated his 24 years of practice to the litigation of wrongful death and serious injury cases. If you have a question about a recall or injury, contact Greening Law, P.C. at 972-934-8900.