Intro to Negligence

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Intro to Negligence
2011-11-27 01:29:22

Chapter 4 Intro to Negligence
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  1. The 4 basic elements of a negligence case are:
    • 1. Duty
    • 2. Breach
    • 3. Causation
    • 4. Damages

    *Must have all 4 elements in order to claim Negligence*
  2. Negligence can be an act or an omission
    • Negligence can be a negligent act.
    • Negligence can be failing to do something the person should have done.
  3. Duty
    An outcome that a person should have known or been able to anticipate or predict based on certain facts.
  4. Statutory Duty
    An obligation created by a statute (law)
  5. Common Law Duty
    Law that has been practiced through habit over time.
  6. Breach
    • When the defendant fails to live up to a legal standard, or violates a duty.
    • The defendant violates a standard of care or acts in a careless or reckless way.
  7. Negligence per se
    Negligence in and of itself; the principle that the violation of a safety statute establishes a presumption of breach of duty in a negligence action.
  8. Causation
    • (Proximate) Causation - the facts that show the defendant's legal responsibility for the injuries to the plaintiff, also known as legal cause.
    • Requires a strong connection between the defendant's actions and the plaintiff's harm.
  9. Damages
    • Monetary payments designed to compensate the plaintiff for an injury.
    • Awarded as a way to attempt to put the plaintiff back into the condition he was in before the injury (or as close as possible).
  10. Actual Damages (have receipts as proof):
    • Property damage
    • Medical Bills (Future medical bills)
    • Loss of earnings
    • Punitive Damages
    • Loss of consortium
  11. Compensatory Damages (no receipt):
    • General damages - Pain and Suffering
    • Whatever the jury feels is enough money to compensate for what the plaintiff is going through.
    • Can be any amount
    • General rule is 3x medical bills
  12. Categories of Damages:
    • Pain and Suffering
    • Lost Wages
    • Future Medical Payments
    • Many more
  13. Comparative Negligence
    • Defendant and Plaintiff both liable based on percentages.
    • If plaintiff is 51% negligent, then they get no damages.
    • If plaintiff is 50% negligent, then they get 50% damages.