In a personal injury case, negligence finds that the other party acted in a way that caused an injury or loss, but exactly how do you prove someone was negligent? In the State of Texas, people are obligated to act reasonably and responsibly. When someone acts careless and reckless, and as a result causes undue harm to someone, the injured party may have grounds to sue for damages.
What Does Negligence Mean In A Personal Injury Case?
Negligence is not to be confused with malice. People act reckless all the time; it doesn’t necessarily mean there was intent behind their behavior. It is not often you will find someone gets behind the wheel drunk aiming to hurt someone. Most people will not purposely hit someone walking across the street or riding their bike. Employers don’t wish their employees to become injured while on the job.
However, that doesn’t mean those who are careless shouldn’t be held responsible for the injury or death of another. If you fall asleep at the wheel at hit someone or you fail to fix the stairs at your apartment complex and your tenant falls, you can still be held liable.
How Do You Determine If Someone Is Negligent?
In Texas, people are expected to behave in a reasonable manner. When they do, and they cause harm to another person, the injured party can claim negligence. Depending on the situation, the guilty party may only be held partially liable. Texas is a comparative fault state, and it must be proven you were at least 50% at fault for the injury or loss.
For example, if you are at a restaurant and you slip and fall in a puddle of water, you may assume that the restaurant is completely to blame. However, if you were intoxicated and did not notice the “Caution Slippery Surface” sign, the other party could use this against you.
If you’ve been injured by another person’s negligence, you may be eligible for compensation to cover medical costs, damage to property like vehicles, and help with expected future medical expenses.
What Is Gross Negligence?
On the other hand, some accidents may warrant what is called gross negligence. This is when the guilty party blatantly disregarded the law and did not exemplify even the slightest ounce of care or regard for another.
If someone is found to have committed gross negligence, he or she will likely face harsher penalties and additional fines, such as punitive damages. Punitive damages are designed to punish the guilty party and hopefully prevent them from repeating the offense.
Do I Need A Lawyer To Prove Negligence?
If you or a loved has been harmed or killed by another person’s negligent behavior, you may receive compensation to cover certain expenses, such as property damage, medical bills, rehabilitation costs and lost wages. In addition, you may be awarded compensation for mental anguish you have experienced since the accident.
A lawyer’s job is to get you the justice and compensation you are entitled to, and Amy VanDeLoo of the VanDeLoo Firm in Plano, Texas is ready to fight for you. The VanDeLoo Firm works on a contingency basis, which means you don’t pay if they don’t win. The VanDeLoo Firm takes personal injury cases in Plano, Allen, Frisco and McKinney. For a free consultation to discuss your case, call the VanDeLoo Firm at 972-200-5080.