Personal injury law is a branch of civil law that deals with financially compensating victims for injuries or wrongdoings. The plaintiff is the person who files the case, and the defendant is the person or organization who is allegedly responsible for the injury. In the event of a fatal accident, the deceased’s family or estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the individual or organization responsible for the accident.
Several parties can be held liable in some cases, and the plaintiff may be able to sue each party to recover the full amount of compensation required for their injury. The defendant, in exchange, can claim that another individual or entity was to blame and name that person or entity as a cross-defendant in the case. In most cases, the burden of proof in personal injury cases is lower than in felony cases resulting from the same acts.
Primarily, a personal injury lawsuit aims to obtain punitive compensation rather than to prosecute the defendant. Nonetheless, punitive damages can be obtained and paid in some instances where a defendant has engaged in especially heinous or malicious actions. Contact a Jersey City personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone to learn more about your legal options.
Elements of Negligence
Personal injury lawsuits may arise out of any situation, premises liability, professional malpractice, or motor vehicle accidents. Most injuries are caused by negligence or reckless conduct instead of intentional conduct. In many states, a plaintiff alleging negligence would need to show:
- The defendant’s duty of care.
- The defendant’s breach of this duty.
- Other causation.
- Direct causation.
- Actual damages.
The duty of a defendant varies depending on the state and circumstances. In general, however, everybody has a responsibility to take appropriate precautions to prevent others’ foreseeable injury.
Examples of Negligence
A driver who has had four drinks, for example, should not get behind the wheel of a car because there is a severe risk of being involved in a car accident. That also ensures that if a retailer notices a loose handrail at the store that may cause a customer to fall, the seller has the responsibility to alert customers or fix the loose handrail so that customers are not hurt. You may file a premises liability claim against an individual or agency who fails to notify of a hazardous condition on their property.
A doctor also has a responsibility to behave in the same way that a reasonably responsible doctor with similar experience and skills would. When faced with a possible diagnosis of a disease, they must order the necessary tests or refer the patient to a specialist. You can file a medical malpractice claim against a doctor who fails to follow the treatment’s ethical standard.
Failure to prove any of the negligence elements by a plaintiff will lead to the case being dismissed or the defendant escaping liability. The defendant’s violation cannot be deemed the “proximate” or legitimate cause of the plaintiff’s injury if there are too many intervening incidents between the defendant’s breach and the plaintiff’s injury.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone have the expertise and skills necessary to navigate the legal system and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve on your personal injury claim. They handle everything investigating your case to prove negligence and battling it out in court with other attorneys or the responsible insurance parties. Call their office at 201-733-2230 to discuss your case with an expert Jersey City personal injury attorney.