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Posted in Personal Injury on February 8, 2022   |  by Gary Burger

Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim

Collecting the compensation you deserve

Personal Injury Lawyer in Missouri and Illinois

Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim. When you sustain an injury because of somebody else's negligence, you likely have a lot of questions. Who is responsible for my injuries? Who will pay for my medical care and time off work? Or, how do I hold someone responsible if they're denying liability? The Chicago and St. Louis based personal injury lawyers at Burger Law are here to help. We have answered those questions for hundreds of clients throughout Missouri and Illinois. If you have been injured in an accident that wasn't your fault, call us today at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a free case evaluation.

Our Missouri and Illinois personal injury law firm uses our knowledge, two decades of experience and tenacity to maximize our clients' compensation. However, before damages can be awarded, liability needs to be determined. We get to the bottom of difficult cases and use evidence and our network of medical and accident experts to determine legal liability. There are many factors that go into determining who is liable for your injuries and why, and it often takes a legal expert to know how to do it. We know how to prove when somebody owed you a responsibility to ensure your safety, and when they neglected the care a reasonable person would have given you. We charge no fees until we win your case.

The 5 Elements of Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim

While tort law is always changing, there are currently five elements of negligence that your personal injury lawyer must prove in order to win your case:

  1. Duty of Care. If you've been injured in an accident, your personal injury lawyer must prove that the defendant owed you a duty of care. Both Missouri and Illinois law stipulate that anybody who drives a motor vehicle their passengers, pedestrians and other drivers a duty of care. So in car accidents, truck accidents, or motorcycle accidents, this step is easy to prove. In medical malpractice case, you must prove that a doctor-patient relationship had been established. In a slip and fall case, you must be injured in an area of the property you were allowed to be in for negligence in premises liability to apply.
  2. Breach of Duty. Next, your car accident lawyer must prove that the defendant failed or was negligent in the duty of care they owed you. In auto crash cases, examples can be:

    In car accident cases, breaking the law is inherently a breach of duty.

    In medical malpractice, examples can include birth injuries, missed diagnosis, incorrect diagnosis or unnecessary or botched surgery.

  3. Cause in Fact. Also called "causation," you must prove that the driver's breach of duty directly caused your injury. For example, if you received a whiplash injury after being rear-ended, your personal injury lawyer will demonstrate how the accident caused your injury.
  4. Proximate Cause. This determines liability. If the driver was driving drunk, they are clearly liable. However, it may be that the driver who rear-ended you could not break because a defective vehicle part was not recalled. In a medical malpractice suit, you must prove that the doctor's action or inaction directly led to your ailment. Negative outcomes happen in the medical field and are not always a doctor's fault. An ER doctor can miss diagnosing a hairline fracture, but if you get a correct diagnosis from a different doctor and no harm was caused, the original doctor is not liable and does not owe you damages.
  5. Damages. The last thing to prove is that there was some form of loss, that can include medical bills, emotional distress, or time away from work because of your injury. One of the biggest benefits to hiring a personal injury lawyer is that they will accurately calculate the total sum of your damages. The defendant and their insurance company will try to minimize your damages, but the St. Louis and Chicago based law firm of Burger Law will demand that you get full compensation.

How to best prove negligence will depend on your specific injuries, what type of accident you were injured in, and the specific circumstances of your accident. Even a standard car accident case can have a host of people who may be liable, including the driver, a manufacturer, a mechanic, the local government or a third party construction crew. In our 20 years of experience, the personal injury attorneys at Burger Law have seen every type of personal injury claim and know exactly how to determine liability and negligence in your claim. Types of personal injury claims we work with are:

However you received your injury and whoever is liable for negligence, Burger Law will ensure that the at-fault party is held responsible and that you get the full compensation you deserve for your injuries.

Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim | Burger Law

If you have been injured because of somebody else's negligence, trust in Burger Law to understand the ins-and-outs of your case and make sure the liable party is held accountable for their actions. Call us today at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a complimentary consultation and to take the first step toward collecting complete compensation.