Do you understand the burden of proof? When you bring a legal case before the court, you must be able to show that your allegations are truthful. Your theories, as stated in your petition, must be based on the evidence. The standard of proof is different for each type of personal injury case.
Criminal cases must show that the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. It is the prosecutor’s job to show this conclusion based on facts. Car accident cases, which are civil lawsuits, can be quite challenging to prove negligence. The allegations must be based on a preponderance of the evidence. The plaintiff must be liable for the harm caused to the defendant. Meeting the burden of proof means establishing four elements:
1.The Duty of Care was Breached
2.The Defendant Owed A Duty of Care to the Plaintiff
3.The Negligence of the Defendant Caused the Injuries
4.There are Verifiable Injuries
Understanding The Duty of Care
First, the Duty of Care must be established. The defendant has an obligation to use reasonable care in regards to the plaintiff’s safety. This obligation is obvious, especially when dealing with a motor vehicle accident. There is no question that the law requires those who drive a car to be safe. The driving conditions are examined as are the actions of the driver.
When a breach of duty occurs, the defendant did not act with reasonable care. This can be difficult to prove. In some cases, however, it is rather easy. For , someone who drives under the influence of drugs and alcohol. It is fairly easy to prove fault in these cases.
Causation can be tricky. The plaintiff must prove that the conduct by the defendant caused their injuries. If there are previous injuries to the same area, like a back, then it must be shown that the accident worsened these conditions. If a plaintiff has broken bones because the defendant rolled over their foot, then it is easy to see there is fault. Sometimes, it is more difficult to prove, and can make winning a case challenging. For instance, a person who has previous neck injury may have a hard time proving that the plaintiff caused their current pain. The insurance company will fight hard to keep from paying any damages on pre-existing conditions.
Proving Injury and Damages
Lastly, the plaintiff must prove that the injuries are extensive to make a personal injury claim. Things like scratches, and a couple cuts, probably are not enough grounds alone. One can expect some minor injuries in a wreck. It is the injuries that cause disruption to your life that must be examined. You must be entitled to the amount you are asking for.
The best proof in any accident claim is to have medical records and bills. If there is any claim for future medical care, then it can be supported by the testimony of an expert. To verify lost income, payroll statements from employers can be used. Finally, testimony from the plaintiff can help to show intangible injuries, like pain and suffering.
When dealing with a personal injury claim, it is very difficult to negotiate with the courts. You must understand the process as well as how much your claim is worth. An Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer can help to navigate you through this difficult process. You want to get the most money for your injuries, and you don’t want to be shortchanged on your compensation package.