People are injured in accidents every day, and unfortunately most accidents occur because of the negligent acts of others. If you have been injured in an accident and wish to pursue compensation, here is what you need to know about the first element of negligence: duty of care.
For help with your personal injury case, contact the Cincinnati personal injury attorneys at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy now for a free, no obligation consultation.
Definition Of Duty Of Care
In the U.S., it is everyone’s duty to act in a reasonable manner to prevent causing injury to others. If one fails to meet this duty, he or she can be held liable for the injury their actions or inactions may have caused.
A duty to act in a reasonable manner is applicable in most situations that people find themselves in. Depending on the law, those in certain situations or professions have a higher duty of care to prevent harm due to their position.
Examples Of Duty Of Care Breaches
Duty of care can be breached in a variety of ways, depending on the situation.
- In the case of a car accident where a driver runs a stop sign and hits another motorist. The driver neglected the duty of care to act as another reasonable driver would have to prevent the accident. The injured motorist may sue the driver for damages due to the breached duty of care that was owed.
- A property owner knows about a hazard on his or her property but fails to fix the hazard, leading to an injury. The property owner has breached his or her duty of care to keep the premises free of hazards. The property owner also breached his or her duty by not giving visitors a proper warning of the dangerous condition.
- A medical professional’s treatment of a patient is not to the same skill or care level that another similarly trained physician would provide, which causes injury to the patient. The medical professional has breached his or her duty and can be held liable.
- A product is sold that has design flaws which make it inherently dangerous, causing harm to consumers. The manufacturer can be held liable because the company breached their duty of care to produce a product that was free of unreasonable dangers.
How Do I Establish Fault?
Once it is determined that you were owed a duty of care in a situation, you must demonstrate how the party breached the duty that he or she owed to you. You must show how the other party’s conduct was unreasonable and negligent in the situation and why he or she is legally to blame for the resulting injuries.
To establish fault and negligence in a personal injury case, the following four elements must be effectively demonstrated.
- You were owed a duty of care by the other party in the particular situation. The law is typically used to establish an owed duty of care in a broad range of situations.
- The other party breached that duty of care – he or she failed to perform in a reasonable manner as required by law to prevent injuries in the situation.
- The other party’s breach of duty directly caused your injury. The injury you sustained would not have happened had the other party followed the law and upheld their duty to you.
- Because of your injury, you suffered damages. Damages may be medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering that you experienced as a result of the injury caused by the other party’s breach of duty of care. You would not have otherwise experienced these damages.
Contact A Trusted Attorney To Learn More
If a duty of care was breached resulting in your injury, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Our Cincinnati personal injury attorneys are committed to helping you recover the maxim compensation you deserve.
Request a free, no obligation consultation today and learn what legal options may exist to help you pursue compensation. There are no upfront fees and payment is only due if we recover compensation for you.