In personal injury claims, the basis for making a claim is dependent on the attribution of blame. In other words, it must be provable that an individual, a company or organisation is legally responsible for harm that has resulted from their inability to take action or preventative steps.

The definition of negligence is: the failure to take action to prevent harm from occurring, or it can refer to careless or thoughtless behaviour that ultimately causes harm to another. When this is provable, the negligent party will be legally liable for the harm.  

This is how legal negligence is assessed and determined in personal injury suits.

Components of a Negligence Claim

In order for a negligence case to be successful, the injured party (or their legal team) have got to prove that the following four components can be attributed to the person or company who are allegedly responsible. The four components are:

  • Duty

The defendant must have a legal duty to the person harmed.

  • Breach

The defendant must have breached their legal responsibilities in some way, either by failing to act or by acting recklessly.

  • Causation

It must be provable that the harm directly resulted from the defendant's action or lack of action.

  • Damages

Once all the other three components have been addressed, it must be established the extent to which the person or company at fault owe remuneration to the harmed person.

Duty

The first thing to establish is that the defendant owed the harmed individual a legal duty of care.  Duty can take many forms and if you are unsure about this point, it's best to talk to a legal advisor to see if you have a claim.

Breach of Duty

Once duty has been established, it will need to be proved that the defendant breached this duty through their actions or failure to take action.  The court will consider whether a "reasonably prudent person" could have been expected to act in the same way under the circumstances.

Causation

The plaintiff must now prove that the defendant's action or lack of action resulted directly in their injury.  It's not enough that the defendant was negligent, it must also be provable that their negligence is what caused injury to the plaintiff. As part of this, it must also be proven that the defendant could reasonably have been expected to have foreseen that their action or inaction might result in harm. If the injury was the result of a freak accident, the defendant would probably not be found liable for damages.

Damages

Once the court is satisfied that the other three parts of the suit have been sufficiently addressed, the plaintiff will be compensated, usually with financial remuneration that reflects expenses such as medical costs and sometimes also pain and suffering.

Make a claim with Cute Injury

If you believe you have been injured due to negligence, it's important to seek legal advice as soon as possible as there are strict time limits imposed on how long you have to initiate a claim. For more information on how Cute Injury can help, contact us now

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