The 4 Steps To Proving Liability in An Accident Case
You never know what life has in store for you. One day you can be flying high and the next you’re hurtling down to earth because you had an accident. It could be a car crash, a slip and fall on wet or icy pavement, a fall down a set of stairs, or even getting bitten by a dog while you’re out for a walk.
Sometimes, accidents just happen. There’s no rhyme or reason, they just do. Other times, those accidents could have been avoided if only someone had taken enough care to protect against them.
Seeking Compensation in an Accident Case
When you can point to someone as being the reason for your accident, you also open yourself up to be compensated for your injuries. Although there are many kinds of injuries, there’s only one burden of proof required. To prove liability in a case you or your lawyer must be able to prove someone was negligent.
Four Steps to Proving Liability
There are four steps to proving someone was negligent and that it caused your injuries.
1. Did the defendant have a duty to provide a safe environment for you or for others? In most cases, this is an easy “yes” because society generally demands this to be the case. For example, it’s not safe to drink and drive.
2. Did the defendant breach that duty? If a landlord did not keep a set of stairs in good repair, creating a safety hazard, then that’s an example of how a duty of care has been breached.
3. Were you injured because of that breach? If a person lets a dangerous dog off a leash while walking in the park, and that dog sinks their teeth into you, that’s a clear-cut example of an injury being caused by the dog owner not doing their part to maintain safety.
4. Did you sustain damages as a result of the injury? If you have to go to the doctor or a hospital because a drunk driver hit you, or you fell down a set of poorly maintained stairs, or you are bleeding and need stitches from a dog bite, then you have sustained damages.
While these are straightforward examples, some accident cases are not so neat and tidy in proving the four steps. This is why it’s wise to consult an attorney in all accident cases where you are entitled to damages.
Williamson Fontenot Campbell & Whittington (WFCW) is a Baton Rouge accident case law firm which excels in handling accident cases, personal injury law, vehicle accidents, and big truck wrecks.