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Elements of a negligence claim

| Dec 1, 2016 | Car Accidents

When Ohio residents are involved in a crash that was caused by someone else, it is common for their loved ones to claim that the other driver ‘acted negligently’. Though negligence may mean irresponsibly in plain English, it has very important legal connotations that can affect the course of one’s personal injury case against the driver who caused the crash.

Generally, when someone behaves carelessly and injures another, they can be held legally liable for causing that harm. This is the general principle of negligence but, in order to prove negligence in a court of law, certain elements must be proven. Only then can the court declare that the other party acted negligently and is therefore accountable for their behavior.

The first element to prove is that the driver, also known as the defendant, owed a legal duty to the accident victim in the given circumstances. The second element is that this duty was breached either by the defendant’s action or failure to perform some action. After this, it must be proven that this behavior, which is either action or inaction, caused the accident victim’s injury and, as a result of this, the victim suffered injuries.

There are further legal complexities and requirements for proving negligence, but these basic four elements must be proven before negligence can be established and compensation sought. Accident victims and their loved ones may find the process overwhelming, especially as they are recuperating from their injuries and trying to come to terms with their life after a car accident. An experienced attorney may be able to work on preparing a case for Ohio residents so the accident victim doesn’t have one more worry to contend with.

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