Proving Negligence in a Car Accident Claim

Most car accident injury claims are built upon the legal theory of negligence. In most cases, the injury victim must prove that the other driver’s negligence caused or contributed to the accident. In other cases, however, the burden is on the defendant to prove that they were not negligent at the time of the crash. Our Marietta auto accident lawyers break down this oft-misunderstood legal principle.

Automobile accident negligenceHow is Negligence Defined?

In legal terms, negligence refers to a broad range of thoughtless or careless behaviors. In many cases, a driver will be considered negligent if they failed to do something they should have, such as failing to yield to a pedestrian. A driver can also be negligent if they do something that they shouldn’t do, such as running a stop sign.

Proving the Other Driver Was Negligent

If you’ve been injured in an auto accident, your Marietta personal injury attorney will generally need to prove that the other driver was negligent at the time of the accident. If you were riding a bicycle or were a pedestrian at the time of the accident, the process will be extremely similar.

You Must Prove They Were Required to Be Careful

Drivers have a legal obligation to remain reasonably careful while on the road. In legal terms, this is often referred to as the “duty of reasonable care.” In the majority of auto accident claims, the defendant’s responsibility to remain safe is largely implied, so proving this requirement is fairly easy.

You Must Prove They Were Not Careful

Once your attorney has demonstrated that the defendant has an obligation to be reasonably careful, they must then prove that the defendant was not being careful at the time of the accident. This is accomplished by answering a simple question; did the driver behave in the same way a normal, reasonable person would have behaved in a similar situation?

Presumption of Negligence

As discussed above, most negligent behaviors must be proven by the plaintiff. In some situations, however, the defendant will actually have to prove that they were not negligent. Certain conditions or behaviors will lead to a presumed negligence, including:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol
  • Driving under the influence of drugs
  • Violating right-of-way laws or failing to yield to a pedestrian
  • Driving in the wrong direction

Injured in a Car Crash? Call (770) 884-6652 Today.

At Jones & Swanson, our experienced Murietta car accident attorneys have recovered more than $50 million on behalf of our clients. When you choose our firm to represent you in your auto accident claim, we will use more than six decades of combined experience and extensive legal knowledge to get the best possible results in your case.

You shouldn’t have to pay for someone else’s negligence. Call our firm today to request your free initial consultation.