Proving negligence in a car accident case can be difficult. Negligence per se is a legal doctrine that helps to prove negligence. If a car accident involves negligence per se, proving fault can be easier for the claimant. We could say that negligence per se is a legal shortcut helping injured plaintiffs to recover compensation.
If you or someone you love were injured in an auto accident, then an experienced auto accident attorney in Tampa can help you establish a viable negligence or negligence per se claim and
What Is Negligence?
Typically, to get compensated for injuries you or someone you love suffer from a car accident, you must prove that someone else’s negligent actions caused the accident. You must show in court that the defendant failed to use reasonable care and caused the injuries.
In other words, negligence means failing to use reasonable care, which is the care that a reasonably careful person would do under like circumstances.
What is Negligence Per Se?
When the defendant violated a law or regulation, the court will determine negligence without asking whether a reasonable person would have acted in the same way. This rule is called negligence per se.
This legal doctrine helps injured people to prove easier that the defendant’s actions were negligent.
An example of negligence per se is driving under the influence of alcohol. Violating a public safety statute like this is evidence of negligence. Another example is failing to prevent your dog from biting someone.
When an action or inaction of a person violates a law created to protect people, it automatically shows negligence.
Proving negligence is necessary in almost every car accident case, and it can be challenging. Specific facts must be presented to verify that the other driver was acting recklessly. However, if you can prove that the defendant violated a law or regulation, which resulted in the accident, it is more simple to prove negligence.
Examples of Negligence Per Se
Following are some examples that negligence per se could apply, where a person was negligent since they were breaking the law designed to protect the public:
- Running through a stop sign
- Ignore traffic lights
- Driving too fast
- Texting while driving
- Failing to signal a lane change
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Driving while drunk
Proving Negligence Per Se
Your claim of negligence per se must be supported by hard evidence and create a solid argument proving the offender’s negligent act. An experienced auto accident lawyer will be able to gather and analyze evidence like the following:
- Proof of a federal, state, or municipal law violation
- The at-fault driver disobeyed the law designed for your protection
- Breaching the traffic law caused your injuries, that the law was intended to prevent
- Your damages would never have occurred if the at-fault driver had not broken the law
Proving negligence per se does not mean that you will win your case automatically. A presumption of negligence is created by negligence per se, but there are some more steps to positively conclude your case. When negligence per se is proven, it’s the defendant’s turn to prove otherwise, and you no longer carry the burden of proving your case.
The defendant will have to prove that they did not intend to violate the law and used reasonable care. For instance, in an emergency, the driver may not intentionally violate a regulation. They may explain by what grounds they were forced to disobey the law; for example, the driver was trying to get out of the way of an ambulance passing and ignored the traffic lights.
The driver at-fault will have to justify the breach of driving safety laws and challenge the negligence per se case. Listed below are some of the defense strategies they might use:
- If the driver at-fault had followed the safety regulations, the damages would be worse. In this case, the driver was serving the greater good.
- An unexpected situation forced the driver to act fast and unintentionally broke the law.
- The at-fault driver could not avoid the collision, even though they made all possible efforts to do so.
- The at-fault driver was incapable of driving and lost control of the vehicle because of a sudden health problem.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney In Tampa, FL
Contact a car accident lawyer in Tampa at Winters and Yonker law firm today for a free consultation. If a negligent driver has injured you, our team of experienced lawyers will examine your case and help you recover the compensation that you deserve.