Each plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit must produce evidence of negligence on the part of the defendant, the opposing party. That evidence should contain proof of the fact that the defendant breached a duty of care. That same proof for the existence of a duty of care could then serve as one element of negligence.
Each person has a general duty of care
That general duty indicates that each person should avoid harming others, when acting in a reasonable manner. It does not demand the exhibition of unreasonable actions, such as that of sacrificing your own life, in order to save someone else’s.
Someone that has violated his or her duty of care could be held liable for the resulting damages. A violation could entail performance of one of these 2 different actions:
1) Doing some act that is unreasonable, and that puts others at risk
2) Failing to perform an act that would be viewed as reasonable and appropriate in a specific situation
In some situations, a certain person has an elevated duty of care
Someone that has accepted the job of driving some form of public transportation has an elevated duty towards those that are riding that same means for transporting members of the public.
Someone that has been acknowledged as a professional must adhere to the standards of his or her chosen profession, as per personal injury lawyer in Cayuga.
—Lawyers must follow the standards established by the legal community.
—Physicians must adhere to the standards of the medical community.
A store or business owner has certain duties that go beyond the caring duties of the typical individual
—A store owner must see that any spills get removed as quickly as possible, so that customers stay safe.
—An apartment owner must arrange for the placement of fire alarms in each apartment, and ensure closure of any stairwell, should there be a fire in the building. That closure would not profit utilization of the stairs, but it should keep smoke from limiting the vision of anyone that tried to use the stairs as an escape route.
An employer is supposed to train employees, so that each of them can perform a specified job correctly. A parent’s duty concerns those actions that involve loving and caring for any child that has resulted from the same parent’s marriage to someone else.
The absence of one element of negligence does not prove the existence of negligence.
By the same token, the simple violation of a person’s caring duties does not automatically qualify as a demonstration of negligent behavior. Legally, a demonstration of such behavior must cause harm to others, and the level of harm that has resulted from the demonstrated behavior must produce measurable losses for the harmed individual.
In a personal injury lawsuit, only plaintiffs that can show evidence for all the elements of negligence have a valid case against the defendant.