An individual can sustain life-altering injuries through no fault of their own. In certain cases, a person can sustain significant injuries as a result of another person’s negligent actions. In tort law, negligence is defined as the failure to exercise reasonable care which results in injury to another person. If a person is injured as a result of another person’s negligence, they are entitled to take legal action to seek financial compensation for their damages. However, in some cases, the “negligence per se” doctrine is applicable which could help a victim recover damages for their injuries. If you have been injured in any type of accident as a result of another person’s negligence, contact one of our adept Santa Clara County Personal Injury Attorneys who can help you navigate your legal options. In addition, please continue reading to learn about when the negligence per se doctrine is applicable in a personal injury case.
What is “negligence per se” in California?
Essentially, the “negligence per se” doctrine states that an act is negligent when a law that was created to protect a certain class of people from harm has been violated. For instance, the negligence per se doctrine is applicable in the following scenarios:
- If a motorist is speeding, running a red light, or driving while they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol which causes them to strike a vehicle, negligence per se is applicable. In this case, the negligence per se doctrine is applicable because the motorist has violated a traffic code that was implemented to protect those on the road from harm.
It is pertinent to note that the negligence per se doctrine is not only applicable in car accident cases but in other types of personal injury cases as well.
How is this type of claim proven?
Although negligence per se claims are similar to negligence claims, they are quite different when it comes to proving the claim in court. While with typical negligence claims, the plaintiff is required to establish that the defendant owed them a standard duty of care. In addition, they must prove that the defendant breached that standard duty of care which resulted in their injuries and damages. However, with negligence per se claims, the plaintiff does not have to prove the defendant owed them a standard duty of care. It has already been established that the defendant violated a law that was implemented to keep a protected class of people that the plaintiff is a member of out of harm’s way. To prove a negligence per se claim, the plaintiff must prove the defendant violated a law that was implemented to protect others from harm. Once this is established, they must prove that they were part of this protected class of people. Additionally, they must prove the defendant’s violation of the law directly caused their injuries and damages.
If you have been injured as a result of another person’s negligence, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our trusted attorneys. With years of experience, our firm can assist you in seeking financial compensation for your damages.