There are many things to keep in mind when filing a personal injury claim. One of the most important is navigating the issue of negligence. What does this term mean and how can you prove that it applies in your case?
In this article, we will discuss what negligence is and how to prove that it caused your injuries. We will also provide tips on how to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company and how a compensation lawyer can help.
What is negligence in the context of personal injury?
Negligence is a legal term that refers to the failure to take reasonable care to avoid causing harm to others. In order for negligence to apply in a personal injury case, the following must be true:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care. This means that they were required to take reasonable steps to prevent you from being harmed. For example, all drivers have a duty of care to other motorists on the road.
- The defendant breached their duty of care. This means that they failed to take reasonable precautions and somebody was injured as a result. For example, if a driver runs a red light and hits another car, they have breached their duty of care.
- The defendant’s breach of duty caused you to suffer injuries. This means that your injuries were a direct result of the defendant’s negligence. For example, if you were in the car that was hit by the driver who ran the red light, your injuries were caused by their negligence.
- You suffered other damages as a result of your injuries. This means that you incurred costs, such as medical bills or lost wages due to being unable to work.
If all of these elements are present, then you may have a case for negligence. The next step is to prove that the defendant’s actions (or inaction) directly led to your injuries.
How can you prove that the defendant’s negligence caused your injury?
There are a few different ways to prove that the defendant’s negligence caused your injury. The most common is to show that the defendant had a duty of care, breached their duty of care and that their breach directly led to your injuries.
Another way to prove causation is to show that the defendant’s negligence was the ‘proximate cause’ of your injuries. This means that their negligence was a direct and foreseeable result of their actions (or inaction).
What if you can’t prove causation?
There are some circumstances in which it may be difficult or impossible to prove causation. For example, if you were injured in a car accident but the other driver was not at fault, it may be difficult to prove that your injuries were caused by their negligence. In these cases, it may be more difficult to recover damages from the other driver’s insurance company.
How do you negotiate a settlement with the insurance company?
Once you have proven that the defendant’s negligence caused your injuries, you will need to negotiate a settlement with their insurance company. Start off by sending a demand letter to the insurance company. This is a formal document that outlines your injuries and damages and how much you are demanding in compensation. The insurance company will then respond with their own offer.
If you are not satisfied with the insurance company’s offer, you can negotiate further or file a lawsuit. However, it is important to keep in mind that most personal injury cases are settled out of court. In fact, less than 5% of personal injury cases go to trial.
If you have been injured in an accident and need help negotiating a settlement with the insurance company, you should consult with an experienced compensation lawyer. They should be able to review the facts surrounding your case and advise you on the best course of action.