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personal injury - delayed symptoms of auto accident

How to Determine if Someone Was Truly Negligent

In a Personal Injury case, how do you determine if someone was negligent?

When you consider suing someone for negligence that caused a personal injury, you have to be sure they were truly negligent. Not only is there a distinction between negligence and intention, but there’s also a difference between negligence and a lack of knowledge. A court isn’t going to want to penalize someone who truly did not know they were supposed to do something or not do something, and someone who intended to hurt you needs to face criminal charges in addition to civil. Learning how to spot true negligence can help you figure out your next move.

Intention vs. Negligence

If someone deliberately neglects to do something, and you end up injured as a result, technically there’s an element of negligence there, and you may be able to file a civil injury suit. However, the court may decide that negligence doesn’t apply in this case because the actions of the other person were deliberate, rather than done out of irresponsibility. The person would need to face additional charges as well.

Missing the Obvious Versus Genuinely Not Knowing

Then there’s the difference between not doing something because you really didn’t know you had to do it, and not doing something because you were spacing out or just not thinking. If someone drops a banana peel unknowingly, and you slip on it, that might not be negligence if they didn’t know the peel dropped and no one said anything. But someone who notices the peel dropped and then decides not to pick it up could face a negligence charge because they didn’t take appropriate steps to make the situation safe when they knew there was a slip-and-fall risk from the peel.

If you’re not sure if negligence was involved in your injury, or if you think you have a case, contact Eisenberg Law Offices at (608) 256-8356. Ask an attorney to evaluate your case and see if it’s worth pursuing.