Personal injury cases are never easy to deal with, especially considering the pain and other inconveniences you have had to deal with during the process. If you are interested in, or have already, filed a personal injury case in Las Vegas, understanding the elements of your case will help make the process a bit easier to follow. Negligence claims, which are filed when another person’s carelessness has resulted in your injuries, are typically made up of four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages.
The first part of your case is to determine whether the other party owed you a legal duty of care. This can be based on the relationship of both parties, such as doctor/patient, or it may be based on the defendant acting in a way that any other reasonable person would act in the same situation. You should be able to expect that a person will drive their car in a responsible manner or that a physician will practice best standards in your care.
Breach of Duty
The breach of duty in a personal injury case is determined by the actions of the person causing your injuries. The courts or your attorney will look at those actions to see if the responsible party acted as a reasonably prudent person would in the same or similar circumstances. This essentially means, did the person act in a way that any other person given the same information would act in the situation. Basically, this element of your case is determining whether the responsible party knew that there was a potential for someone to be injured if they carried out their actions.
In personal injury cases involving automobiles, this is essentially whether the driver that caused your injuries was following the same driving laws that others would in the same situation. In cases concerning dog bites in Las Vegas, it could include whether the dog in question was contained or restrained properly, given its violent temperament.
This is the step in which you have to show that the other party’s negligent actions actually caused your injuries. For example, if you were injured when a medical practitioner left a sponge in your body during surgery, you would have to prove that this was the cause of your injuries in order to prove your case.
Causation also includes gaining an understanding of whether the other party should have known, or been able to foresee, that the action or inaction he or she took would cause an injury to someone else. There are times when freak things happen, such as a sudden wind occurring at the same time a person was carrying a large piece of plywood down the street – the person carrying the item would not have been able to foresee that someone would be injured in that manner.
Damages are the final part of a personal injury case. This typically includes your medical bills or lost wages that were the direct result of your injury.
If you believe you have a personal injury case, make sure to contact a qualified Las Vegas attorney to help you go over the elements of your case.