When living in a no-fault state such as Florida, oftentimes victims of car crashes are not fully compensated for all damages incurred in a car crash. If a passenger in a car crash was not fully compensated by the insurance company, the next step may be to file a negligence lawsuit. Negligence must be proven in order to receive court awarded compensation for damages or injuries as a result of a car accident. Legally, negligence means someone has failed to act in a reasonably careful and responsible manner. Negligence is often proven by details from a police report, eyewitness testimony, expert witness testimony and photographs from the scene of the crash. To prove driver negligence, you must show all of the following:
The law required the defendant to be reasonably careful.In car accident cases, the law requires drivers to be careful when encountering anyone they meet on the road — passengers, persons in other vehicles, and pedestrians. This is called the “duty of reasonable care.”
The defendant was not careful.This is called “breaching” (or violating) the duty of care. In determining whether a driver was sufficiently careful, the law compares the driver’s conduct with the conduct expected of a “reasonable person.” The law asks: How would a reasonable, prudent person have behaved in the same or similar circumstances?
If the defendant’s behavior falls short of how a reasonable person would have acted, the defendant has violated the duty of reasonable care.
Examples of conduct expected of a reasonable driver include:
- Stopping at a red light
- Watching for crossing pedestrians
- Following the vehicle in front at a safe distance.
The defendant’s conduct caused plaintiff’s injuries.You must show that the defendant’s conduct caused your injuries.
The plaintiff suffered losses and/or was injured.Car accident victims are entitled to compensation for injuries, lost wages or earning capacity, pain and suffering, and property damage. The plaintiff must show evidence of his or her injuries and other monetary losses to be compensated. If you are the plaintiff, it is important to keep complete and detailed records of all injuries, medical expenses, and property damage.
A driver involved in the accident might not always be to blame. If the cause of the accident is road design or road conditions, the government may be the negligent party. If equipment failure caused the accident, the car manufacturer may be the negligent party in the case. More commonly, car accidents occur due to traffic law violations, driver error or distracted driving, in which case the driver is considered the negligent party.
Knowledge Equals Power in Orlando Auto Accident Cases
Many car accidents occur due to driver’s negligence. If you are a passenger and have suffered injury in a Florida car crash as a result of a driver’s negligence, you are eligible for compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages as well as other damages. Contact an experienced Orlando personal injury lawyer at Auto Justice Attorney for help with your case.