Negligence Per Se
Just about every personal injury claim or lawsuit, including motor vehicle accident cases, are based on the legal doctrine of negligence. This means that in order for the victim to receive compensation for the losses they have suffered because of their accident injuries, they have to prove that the accident that caused the injuries occurred because of the other party or parties’ negligence. This is also true in car accident cases.
An MVA lawyer in Memphis, TN will often use different evidence to prove the negligence of the other party. They may use testimony from doctors, police officers, or accident reconstructionist to help prove the other party’s negligence. A car accident lawyer Memphis, TN trusts might also use the testimony of eyewitnesses to show there was negligence.
So, how does the legal system define negligence?
By law, a person is deemed to act negligently if they behave in such a way that a “reasonably cautious person” would not. This not only includes negligent acts, but also negligent failure to act. In a car accident injury claim or lawsuit, the at-fault person owed a duty of care to drive safely and obey all traffic laws. This is the duty of care that all drivers are held to.
There are four elements that a Memphis, TN MVA lawyer must prove in order to prove the negligence of the at-fault party:
There are some cases where negligence is automatically assumed based on the circumstances of the case. This is referred to as ‘negligence per se.’ This is usually the case when the at-fault party broke the law that resulted in the victim’s injuries. In these cases, the victim’s car accident attorney does not have to prove the four elements. He or she only has to prove that the at-fault party violated a law and that violation caused the victim’s losses.
For example, in Tennessee, just as in every state in the country, it is illegal to drink and drive. If a driver gets behind the wheel of their vehicle after they have been drinking and causes a crash that results in the injury of a victim, the court would consider the at-fault driver negligence per se and would deem them legally liable for the victim’s losses.
When an at-fault party has broken the law and caused the victim’s injuries, the jury may also order that party to pay the victim punitive damages, in addition to the economic and noneconomic damages the victim is entitled to.
If you have been injured in a car crash, contact Patterson Bray to speak with an MVA lawyer in Memphis, TN and find out what kind of financial compensation you may be entitled to.