You’ve probably heard people say that you can sue for negligence when you’ve been injured, but you might not know exactly what the word means. The definition of negligence is simply “failing to use proper care.” This can mean something very different depending on what the activity is, and whether training or a license is required. Just because you were hurt, doesn’t mean that you will be successful suing the responsible parties. That’s why it’s important to speak to a negligence lawyer in Queens to find out if what happened to you is something that justifies a lawsuit.
Elements of a Negligence Claim
In order to succeed with a negligence claim, it’s necessary to prove the following elements with a “preponderance of the evidence.” This standard means that it’s more likely than not this it’s true, much less of a burden than the “without a reasonable doubt standard” required for criminal convictions. The elements of negligence are:
Duty of Care
The person that caused you harm must have had a direct or implied responsibility to you. For example, drivers owe a duty to others on the road, doctors must use established standards of care and stores have a duty to the public to have a safe establishment. There is usually no duty to trespassers and those engaging in unauthorized activities.
Breach of Duty
The duty is considered breached when reasonable safety standards are not employed. For example, a driver blasts through a red light, a doctor leaves an instrument inside a patient or a store has oil on the floor. The standard of care varies based on the training and expectations for the particular persons and circumstances.
It’s not enough that somebody had a duty and breached it, it’s also necessary to prove that this breach of duty is what caused the injury. For example, somebody slips on oil in a store. He gets up and walks out of the store, and doesn’t seek medical attention for months after the accident. Now he’s claiming that he has a permanent disability to his back. This claimant would have a very hard time proving that his back pain was caused by that accident.
An injury can be either physical or monetary. It is technically enough for the claimant to give testimony about their loss of money or physical injury, but in practice it’s best to have receipts, bills and/or medical reports that substantiate your injury.
Car Accidents Are The Most Common Type Of Negligence Claims
Any negligence lawyer in Queens will tell you that car accidents are the most common type of negligence claim. Most Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, Staten Island and Brooklyn traffic accident attorneys have more car accidents cases in their office than any other type. Car accidents can cause very serious injuries and the facts are usually straightforward, making most of these cases relatively simple to prosecute. Some car accidents are much more complicated, involving catastrophic injuries, multiple defendants and even issues of interstate commerce and international law. So it’s best not to assume that your case is simple and to hire the most experienced and reputable negligence lawyer in Queens.
The Best Negligence Lawyer in Queens
Wittenstein & Wittenstein has been serving the community for more than sixty years, providing excellent services and getting the highest settlements and awards. That’s why people seeking a Queens, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan or Brooklyn traffic accident attorney call Wittenstein & Wittenstein. Call 718-261-8114 to schedule a free consultation. We don’t get paid unless we collect money for you.