In the aftermath of a car accident, one of the most critical parts of an injury claim is understanding how to prove liability. This often requires sufficient evidence and a firm understanding of the law—something you may only receive with a qualified legal advocate on your side.
However, in many personal injury and car accident matters, proving liability relies on four very specific factors. It is your responsibility as the plaintiff in a car accident case to prove that these factors existed, thus making the defendant the liable party.
Before you begin your car accident claim, you should recognize the four factors, what they mean, and what you can look for to help strengthen your potential case.
The Duty of Care
The first factor that must be shown is duty of care. This means proving that the defendant had the responsibility to act in a matter that did not compromise your safety in anyway. However, it is easier to prove in a car accident case as anyone with a license does in fact have a duty of care to all others on the road.
Duty of care means that the driver should be obeying all traffic laws and acting in a way that not only cares for his or her own well-being but prevents others on the road from being harmed by the driver’s action.
Breach In the Duty of Care
Because all drivers on the road have a duty of care to others, any act of negligence can be considered a breach of that duty of care. This includes the following acts:
- Driving while under the influence
- Driving while texting
- Driving while drowsy
- Swerving in and out of lanes
Any action the driver makes that can be seen as negligence may be used against them as a breach of duty of care. Showing that the defendant was actively disobeying the laws on the road can prove beneficial in strengthening your case.
The Breach Caused an Accident
In some cases, it isn’t the driver’s actions that cause the accident—such as when a product on the vehicle is considered defective or a road danger causes the accident. However, in personal injury matters, it must be shown that the driver’s direct breach in the duty of care was what caused the accident.
As the plaintiff, it is on you and your legal team to show that the negligence caused the crash and no other factors were involved. Proving this can seem difficult at first, but the evidence you collect at the scene of the accident can help put your case together.
The Accident Caused an Injury
One of the defenses used by insurance companies is claiming that you had a pre-existing injury or that you suffered your injuries in a separate incident from the one involving their policyholder. This because one of the factors of liability is proving that the negligent action did in fact cause an injury.
It’s important to get medical help after the accident. The doctor you see can show that you did suffer an injury as a result of the negligence and that the other driver should be responsible for the expenses associated with the accident.
At O2 Law, we know what it takes to help our clients pursue the justice and compensation they need. Proving liability can be a difficult task to do on your own. You don’t have to worry about that with our Long Island car accident lawyers on your side.
Remember that New York is a no-fault insurance state, so proving liability is necessary for cases where significant injuries occur and there is excessive property damage.
If you need to seek legal action against a negligent driver, call our firm today at (631) 250-4212 and speak with a committed attorney.