When an auto accident happens, the main priority of the courts is to determine who is liable in it. This liability is often attached to the negligent driver, meaning the person who performed an action that is prohibited by the law or failed to perform an action that he is required to do.
A driver will be guilty of negligence if you were injured because he was careless or reckless. Once he is proven guilty, he will then be required to compensate you for all the losses that you suffered as a result of the incident.
Proving the other driver's fault is not an easy task because you will first need to establish the four elements of an auto accident negligent claim, which are:
- The defendant should have exerted reasonable care while driving- Under the law, drivers should be cautious while behind the wheel in order to avoid accidents. In addition, drivers are required to keep all road users safe. Road users also include pedestrians and vehicle passengers, not just drivers. This specific task is known as "duty of reasonable care."
The defendant breached his duty- In order to know if the defendant was careful, his conduct will be compared with a reasonable person's actions. Examples of actions a reasonable person would not have done include the following:
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Failure to stop at a red light
- You were injured because of the defendant's actions- You should be able to show that you were injured as a result of the accident. After it occurred, it is better if you take pictures of your wounds and acquire medical treatment in order to have an easier time proving this element.
- You were injured or you suffered from losses- Upon winning the case, the court may allow you to recover monetary damages for your medical expenses, property damages, pain and suffering, loss of earning capacity, or lost wages. However, you might not be able to recover a single cent if you were not able to show actual injuries or monetary losses. For example, a passenger who was not injured, did not need to take time off his work, or did not suffer from property damage may not recover anything from the driver at fault.
You can establish these four elements by seeking legal help from a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer. A legal expert will help you win your case by locating possible witnesses, gathering evidence, and representing you in court proceedings.