The word “negligence” is one of many terms that people use broadly in everyday conversation but which carries a more specific meaning when used in reference to the law. Proving negligence is key to winning a personal injury lawsuit.
The law defines “negligence” as “A failure to behave with the level of care that a reasonable person would exercise under the same circumstances.” Negligence is usually accidental in nature, although extreme or “gross negligence” is, in many cases, a criminal offense.
Negligence and Liability
The primary factors determining whether a negligent party is liable for the damages caused by his or her negligence include:
- Whether the action (or inaction)lacks reasonable care
- The foreseeable severity of any harm that may result
- The burden of precautions to reduce or warn of the risk of harm