Negligence In-Depth

What is Negligence

When it comes to personal injury cases, negligence is the key to determining who’s in fault of the casualties. With that said, negligence is the determination of another person’s fault of the accident, and the main key elements of determining this is through the breach of duty, and the duty of care.


4 Key Factors of Negligence Claims

Picture of portland personal injury lawyerThere are four key factors when it comes to negligence claims, and they include the following:

  1. Breach of duty– it’s one thing to know about a duty of care, but it’s another thing to determine whether or not the obligation of care was met. It must be determined whether or not the person was careless or negligent. And furthermore, if the individual was found reckless or negligent, then he/she has committed a breach of duty.
  2. Causation– once it’s shown that breach of duty has occurred, the accused person may say that those situations do exist; however, they were not the cause of the injury. This is called causation. For instance, the accuser may show that the stairs handrail was loose at the time of damage, but the accused may say that the petitioner’s damage is caused when he/she fail from running up the stairs to answer the phone. For more information visit a professional Portland attorney.
  3. Damages– this is the legal lingo that refers to the emotional and physical injuries, loss of income, and property damage as a result of the accident. For example, due to falling on the stairs with the loose handrail, the person had to be on leave for weeks, thus causing loss of income from the inability to work.


Proximate Cause and Foreseeability

In addition to the key factors mentioned above, there are other issues that must be determined to accurately determine negligence. For one thing, it must be determined if the person could have reasonably foreseen the potential consequences of his/her actions. For example, it could be established that the accused is liable for the injury of someone cutting themselves on shattered glass left behind by the defendant on the accusers’ lawn. But it’s not reasonably foreseeable if a fire erupts from the sun hitting the glass, thus causing damage to the property. In this situation, the scope of liability of the accused must be determined which is the proximate cause. The accused would be liable for the injury caused by the shattered glass, but not for property damages.


Sharing Blame in regards to Contributory and Comparative Fault

In addition to all the issues surrounding personal injury claims, there are cases where the fault is shared- meaning more than one party is at fault. And furthermore, the shared guilt must be determined if it’s contributory fault or contributory fault. This depends on the state’s laws and regulations. Contact a professional adviser from, for this aspect of personal injury law.

Contributory fault (or contributory negligence) is when the injured person can’t hold the other person responsible if the injured person contributed to the accident. Even if the injured person contributed only 1 percent of the injury, and the other person contributed 99 percent of the damage, he/she can’t hold the other person responsible. With comparative fault (or comparative negligence), there would be a comparison of how much each party is held accountable for the accident.