As a legal term, “negligence” is similar to the common dictionary definition of negligence: a failure to act with the level of care that a reasonably careful person would use in similar circumstances. The legal concept of negligence is a bit more complex, but Freehold personal injury attorneyScott Grossman has provided a brief explanation of negligence, and how it relates to personal injury cases, as a reference for our clients.
Negligence and the Law
In order to rightfully obtain compensation on the behalf of an injured victim or the family of the deceased, an individual or party must have committed a negligent act that resulted in injury or property damage. When an individual files a civil lawsuit, he or she is alleging that the other party’s negligence is to blame for the injury or property damage. In some cases, property damage and personal injury can be part of the same legal action; for instance, if your neighbor’s huge, unstable tree falls on your house while you’re in it, damaging the house and physically hurting you, you may legally pursue compensation for both property damage and the sustained injury.
Negligence applies to cases involving the following types of accidents and injuries that our firm handles:
- Animal Attacks
- Auto Accidents
- Catastrophic Injuries
- Construction Accidents
- Medical Malpractice
- Premises Liability
- Personal Injury
- Wrongful Death
- Workers’ Compensation
Determining Legal Liability
In any given set of circumstances involving personal injury or property damage, common sense alone may indicate who was “at fault.” However, establishing negligence and liability in a legal context can involve a stricter standard than common sense.
Personal injury or damage to property may occur:
- Without anyone being negligent, or
- As a result of the negligence of one party or multiple parties, or
- As a result of the negligence of the individual who suffered the injury or property damage.
As you can imagine, there are many possible scenarios where negligence can be involved. Keep in mind, too, that negligence can be based on what someone did, or on what they did not do. This applies to individual people as well as companies and corporations.
Legal liability for negligence also considers the following propositions.
- If the person that suffered the injury was somewhere he or she wasn’t supposed to be (trespassing or ignoring signs), or he or she should have been aware of the events that led to the accident, then the individual or party alleged to be negligent might not be found liable.
- If the injured individual is also determined to be careless with regard to the events that led to their injury, then he or she is deemed “comparatively negligent.” The compensation that the injured obtains from the suit may be reduced in proportion to his own legally determined level of carelessness.
- If a negligent worker is responsible for an on-the-job accident that causes injury or death to another worker, the employer may also be found negligent for the accident.
- If an injury is sustained on public or private property due to poorly a maintained or constructed premises, the property owner may be held liable for being careless (“negligent”) in maintaining or building the property, regardless of whether the dangerous condition is new or previously existing. This area of personal injury is subcategorized as premises liability.
- If an accident is caused by a defective product, the designer, manufacturer, and/or seller of the product may be held negligent, making them legally liable for the accident and resulting injuries. The injured person does not have to know which party was negligent in designing, creating or selling the defective product, or know how the defect occurred.
A thorough, detailed discussion of your injury and accident with Freehold car accident attorney Scott Grossman will help determine whether you have a case based on negligence. Contact our practice today to have your case evaluated by the experts at The Grossman Law Firm.
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