Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim
When you are faced with an injury, you need to consider if the accident was caused by another party's negligent behavior. Some people understandably just want the situation to be over, so they let it go or assume that everyone makes mistakes, and do not look deeper into the situation. Many accidents are preventable and could have been avoided altogether if the responsible party had been cautious. If there is an individual that is responsible for the incident then they should be held liable.
One of the main factors of a case will be to show that the defendant was negligent in some way. In addition to showing they were negligent, this negligence should be tied to the final outcome of the case. So, how do you prove someone was negligent? This can be done in a variety of ways depending on the details of the case. Ultimately the defendant should be shown as acting in a way that differs from what another person in their position would do if being cautious and prudent. Negligence shows that they were acting in a way that was not reasonable.
Elements of Negligence
Negligent behavior can take many different forms, depending on the situation. For example, evidence could be used to show negligence when a driver is caught running a red light by a camera, or when a property owner did not maintain their property so that it was safe. Negligence means a failure to behave with the same level of care an ordinary individual would under the same circumstances, in legal terms, negligence is when a defendant breaches a duty owed to another individual.
A "duty" can mean many things for example, if you slip and fall in a store due to a spill on the floor the store employees had a duty to clean up or warn their customers of the spill. Additionally, a texting driver who causes an accident had a duty to follow the laws of the road that prohibit such distracted driving acts. As mentioned above, an injury victim must prove negligence in order to move forward with their personal injury claim, as such the elements of negligence are important to any injury claim. Elements of negligence include:
- The negligent party had a duty towards another
- The negligent party breached this duty
- This breach of duty caused the plaintiff's injuries
- The negligent party knew or should have known that their actions could result in harm to others
The Statute of Limitations in California
According to the California Code of Civil Procedure section 335.1, injury victims have two years from the date of their injury to file a claim before the statute of limitations ends. The statute of limitations is a law imposed on a state-by-state basis which dictates how long injury victims have to file a personal injury claim before they lose their legal right to do so and recover compensation. There are some exceptions which can change this two-year time. For example, injury victims who are minors at the time of the accident, have two years from their eighteenth birthday to file a claim. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our San Bernardino personal injury attorney to discuss your case as soon as possible.
How Our Team Can Help
Since these cases can sometimes be subjective it is important to work with a professional that can develop a strong case that shows you are owed compensation. Proving negligence and giving little room for doubt can be the difference in getting the financial assistance you need for an injury or lost wages.