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How to prove negligence

Louisiana residents who are considering filing a personal injury lawsuit may not necessarily be aware of how the process works. In order to sue for damages, the plaintiff must prove that they sustained damages due to the defendant's negligence. There are four aspects of negligence one must prove in order to prove fault.

One of the things that the plaintiff will have to prove is that they actually sustained damages due to the incident. This may consist of injury or damage to property, but it must be something that the plaintiff can be compensated for. The plaintiff will also have to prove causation, or that the damages they suffered were actually caused by a negligent act or omission of the defendant and not some other cause.

Another item that the plaintiff must prove is that the defendant owed a legal duty of care to them. This, for example, might be a motorist driving in a safe manner or a commercial property owner providing safe conditions to its invitees. After proving the defendant had a legal duty, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached that duty. The plaintiff must prove that the defendant failed to take action that a reasonably prudent person would have taken.

A person who has suffered an injury due to someone else's actions, such as the negligent operation of a vehicle in such a way that causes a car crash, may not be sure how to pursue it in court. A lawyer may be able to help by filing the claim, establishing liability and guiding the plaintiff through the process of pursuing compensation for loss of income.

Source: FindLaw.com, "Proving Fault: What is Negligence?" July 11, 2014

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