Personal injury lawyers must prove that the accident that caused the injury was the result of the defendant’s negligence. They have to establish that the causation falls upon the defendant and not the plaintiff for the latter to have grounds to seek compensation.
You may be familiar with the concept of negligence, but in personal injury cases, there are two types of negligence. Understanding the difference between them could help you better understand what is going on with your personal injury case.
Ordinary negligence is the unintentional failure to exercise care required of a reasonable person, which then causes harm to another person or property. In other words, this type of negligence pertains to accidents.
Although the person at fault did not intend to harm you, you still may recoup your damages. After all, they did not exercise standard of care. However, when you assert ordinary negligence, you will need to prove the four following elements:
• Duty – You must prove that the other party failed to perform their legal requirement of care owed to others or you.
• Breach – You must prove that the other party breached their legal duty.
• Causation – You must be able to link the other party’s action or neglect to the damages you have incurred.
• Damages – You must prove that you have suffered damages (whether physical, emotional, or financial) due to the negligence of the other party.
If you can establish those elements of ordinary negligence, you have a strong claim for personal injury.
Gross negligence is not a simple act of carelessness—it is a reckless disregard for the health and safety of others. As opposed to accidents, this is malicious behavior that is done consciously or willfully. In other words, the person’s intention is to hurt others.
You and your lawyer will need to prove that the other party purposefully caused you damages. If you successfully prove gross negligence, you may be awarded higher compensation for your damages and you may claim punitive damages.
Gross negligence may be more complicated to prove than ordinary negligence. You will need the services of an experienced attorney to help you establish gross negligence.
What Compensation Can You Get In A Personal Injury Case?
If you have filed a personal injury case, you may be entitled to compensation for the following:
• Cost of the medical treatments for injuries related to the incident
• Lost wages if the accident prevented you from working
• Pain and suffering
• Emotional distress
• Losses if your injuries affected your personal relationships (with your partner, children, etc.)
• Diminished quality of life
Another important factor to remember when filing a personal injury case is that Florida has a comparative fault statute, which compares the fault of both parties. This means that if your actions—no matter how little—led to the accident, your compensation will be reduced. Your compensation will be based on how much your negligence contributed to the accident.
Your personal injury lawyer should guide you through the ins and outs of your case to make sure you get the compensation you deserve for the damages you suffered from another individual’s negligence..