What is negligence in a car accident case?

In order to establish that the other driver in a car accident was negligent, that driver’s actions or failure to act must be shown to have caused the accident that resulted in your injuries. In order to establish negligence, an accident victim must show that:

  • The driver had a duty
  • That duty was breached
  • The breach of duty caused the accident and injuries
  • Damages were suffered as a result.

If the driver failed to use ordinary care – the level of care that a reasonable person would have used under the same circumstances – a breach of duty occurred. While operating a motor vehicle, we all have a duty to use ordinary care for the safety of other motorists.

The following are some examples of ways that drivers can be negligent:

  • Following too closely
  • Driving too fast
  • Driving too slow
  • Failure to yield the right-of-way
  • Failure to obey traffic signals or signs
  • Driving in an impaired state
  • Distracted driving, such as texting or talking on cell phones.

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