When operating a motor vehicle, drivers have certain responsibilities to others on the road. They must drive safely and carefully, including avoidance of distractions, driving at appropriate speeds and obeying traffic signals, to name a few. If you were hurt in a collision caused by another driver, it is possible that you have grounds to pursue a personal injury claim on the basis of negligence.
To prove you are the victim of negligence, you must prove that the inaction or decision of another person is the cause of your pain and suffering. In most cases involving motor vehicle crashes, this means proving the other driver acted in a way that was careless or reckless. Proving fault on the basis of negligence is not easy, which is why you may find it beneficial to consult with an experienced serious injury attorney before you speak with the other driver’s insurance company.
Building a strong negligence claim
Building a strong negligence claim requires that you have evidence of four specific elements. Without all of the following, you may not be successful in your efforts to secure compensation:
- Duty – You must be able to prove the liable party owed you a certain duty of care. For example, you can expect other drivers to act reasonably and with a certain level of care for others, obeying the rules of the road.
- Breach – You must be able to prove that the liable party violated his or her duty. This includes proving the driver did or did not do something that a reasonable person would or should do in that situation.
- Cause – You must be able to prove that this breach of duty is the cause of your physical, financial or non-economic suffering. You may prove this with your medical records or other crash-related documentation.
- Damages – You must be able to prove that you experienced damages as a result of the negligent actions of the liable party. This is the basis of the financial compensation you will pursue as part of your claim. This may include medical bills, wage documentation and other supporting invoices.
The civil claims process is complex, and it can be difficult to navigate on your own. You may have a more significant chance of successfully proving negligence if you have the experienced guidance of a Colorado attorney who specializes in serious injury law. Before you speak with the other driver’s insurance adjuster or consider a settlement offer, seek an assessment of your case from an experienced attorney.