Negligence law determines whether an injured party has grounds for a personal injury claim. States throughout the U.S. hear cases based on negligence, and this type of law also varies from state to state.
Negligence is a legal term that refers to a duty of care that one individual owes to another. When individuals fail to uphold their duty, and the failure causes harm or injury, negligence has occurred.
To bring a personal injury case, the lawyer must show that negligence occurred. Furthermore, evidence must prove that the injury resulted from the negligence and that compensable damages exist.
The following would be an example of negligence:
An apartment property owner has been told by a number of tenants that a step is loose on a stairway. Months have gone by and the property manager failed to repair the step. A new tenant moves in, is unaware of the loose step, slips and falls, and breaks a leg.
What complicates negligence law is determining whether negligence is shared. That is to say, whether both parties contributed in some degree to the accident injury.
Some states allow injured parties to recover compensation even if the defendant was only one percent at fault (pure comparative negligence). Other states will not allow a claimant to recover any compensation if they contributed in any way to the injury. However, many states base recovery on a form of contributory or comparative negligence. This is the case in New York.
Based on New York law, contributing to negligence does not bar recovery of compensation for damages. This is true for personal injury, property damage and wrongful death. However, the amount of compensation for damages that is recoverable is diminished in proportion to the conduct that was contributory.
For example, if the court decides the injured party was 15% at fault, then the party may only recover 85% of the amount of damages incurred.
Our attorneys at Sackstein, Sackstein & Lee, LLP can evaluate your situation and advise about recovering compensation for damages.
Negligence is a legal term you frequently hear when pursuing personal injury cases. In fact, negligence is the legal basis for bringing an injury lawsuit.
Negligence refers to the failure to act with the degree of care that a reasonable person would exercise in the same situation. It can refer to actions but also to omissions, or failures to act as a reasonable person would have acted.
When a lawyer files a personal injury lawsuit, the case must include four elements to establish negligence:
When more than one party is responsible for causing an accident, cases become complicated. Some states have laws that prevent an accident victim from recovering compensation if victim had any fault at all in causing the accident. However this is not true under New York law.
New York has a contributory negligence law, which means the court evaluates the negligence of all the parties who contributed to the accident. The court assigns each party a percentage of fault, based on New York Civ. Prac. L. & R. §§1411, et seq. The court does not bar recovery in any legal action that pursues compensation for personal injury, injury to property or wrongful death, if the injury victim or person who was killed in the accident, contributed to causing the damage. However, the court reduces the amount of recoverable compensation based on the percentage of contribution to damages.
An example would be if one driver ran a red light and crashed into another car, but the other driver was speeding. The court might determine that the extent of damages were 80% the fault of the driver running the red light and 20% the fault of the other speeding driver. If the damages were $100,000, the plaintiff (the speeding driver) could recover $80,000.
If you have suffered injury and believe it was due to another person’s negligence, contact a personal injury lawyer. A consultation to determine whether grounds exist to pursue a case is free. The attorney will explain your rights to take legal action.