Time and again, television programs and motion pictures are filled with courtroom scenes in which an injured person dramatically claims victory and receives a bountiful judgment from an earnest jury. The stark reality is that prevailing in a Nevada personal injury case involves satisfying precise legal requirements and the presentation of persuasive evidence. If you’ve been injured in an accident and are contemplating hiring an experienced personal injury attorney in Las Vegas, you are wise to have a basic understanding of how to prove negligence in a Nevada personal injury case.
As the injured person in a Nevada personal injury case, you must satisfy specific legal standards or requirements to win your case. You also need to ensure that sufficient evidence is obtained and presented to support your injury claim.
Legal Standard to Prove Negligence in a Nevada Personal Injury Case
Quite like other states around the country, Nevada law has four legal elements that must be satisfied to prevail or win a personal injury case:
· existence of a duty of care owed by the defendant to the plaintiff,
· breach of that duty of care by the defendant,
· the breach of the duty owed was the actual legal cause of the accident and associated injuries, and
· plaintiff suffered actual injuries.
Duty of Care
Legally speaking, a duty of care is the legal responsibility of an individual, business, or some other entity to avoid specific actions or failure to act that reasonably can be foreseen to have the potential to harm someone. The best way to understand what is meant by the duty of care in a personal injury case is to consider an example.
Motor vehicle accidents are among the most common causes of personal injuries in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada. A motorist has a reasonable duty to follow the directives of traffic signs and signals. A driver reasonably can foresee that the failure to abide by traffic signs and signals can result in an accident and harm someone else.
Breach of Duty of Care
The second element that must be demonstrated in a Nevada personal injury case is a breach of care duty. Using the example of an automobile accident, a car driver breaches a duty of care by driving through a red light at an intersection. A store owner breaches a duty of care to customers by failing to clean up liquid on the floor in a timely manner.
Breach of Duty was Legal Cause of Accident and Injuries
The breach of duty must be the legal cause of an accident and associated injuries. A primary consideration in determining whether the breach of duty was the legal cause of the accident is legally known as foreseeability. Technically speaking, foreseeability is also known as “proximate cause” among injury lawyers in Las Vegas and elsewhere.
An example is useful to illustrate when a breach of duty is the legal cause of an accident. A breach of duty is the legal cause of an accident when a motorist drives through a red light and
hits and injures a pedestrian. Imagine a person looking down at the intersection from the 10th floor of an office building at the time of the accident. Consider further that the observer high up in a building has a heart attack while witnessing the accident. The car driver’s breach would not likely be considered the proximate cause of the individual’s heart attack in the office building.
To prove negligence in a Nevada personal injury case, the plaintiff must be able to demonstrate the actual injuries were sustained. Contending that a person has “potential injuries” will not suffice when a person desires compensation in a personal injury insurance claim or lawsuit. Nevada law permits a person to make claims for physical injuries and demonstrable emotional or psychological harm.
Evidence to Support Your Personal Injury Case
In addition to satisfying a personal injury case’s legal requirement, sufficient, appropriate evidence must be gathered to support a claim. Evidence includes everything from accident scene videos or photos to witness statements to testimony from doctors and other recognized experts.
If you want to learn more about your rights in the aftermath of an accident, your next step should be to schedule an initial consultation with injury attorneys in Las Vegas. You can schedule a case evaluation and consultation with a personal injury lawyer from our firm by visiting our website or calling us at (702) 960-4050.
There is no charge for an initial consultation. We charge no attorney fee unless we prevail in your personal injury case.