Personal injury claims are centered on negligence, which means victims have the legal burden of proving that the negligence of another person or entity was responsible for causing their injuries and damages. While this is a general summation of the standards involved in a personal injury case, it does serve to highlight the fact that victims have valid claims only if and when their injuries could and should have been prevented through reasonable care.
Our Oklahoma City personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Dan Davis have extensive experience advocating for injured victims and families across the state of Oklahoma. Having worked with numerous clients who suffered harm in a range of preventable accidents, we understand that the personal injury claim process can seem confusing and unfamiliar. That’s why we take the time to educate clients about their rights as victims, and to discuss the elements of proving their injuries resulted from negligence, and why they are entitled to financial compensation.
The general elements of a personal injury claim are as follows:
- A Legal Duty – In order to have a valid personal injury claim, a legal duty must have existed between the victim and the at-fault party. Depending on the nature of an accident and the circumstances involved. This legal duty may exist in a number of ways, but generally always as a duty to take reasonable steps in preventing injuries and harm. For example, all drivers have a legal duty to operate their vehicles safely. Property owners have a legal obligation to ensure their premises are free from potential hazards. And medical professionals have a duty to treat patients in accordance to accepted medical standards.
- Breach of Duty – When there is a legal duty present between victim and defendant, personal injury claims allege that the defendant breached that duty, meaning that they failed in some capacity to uphold their legal obligation. Negligent drivers who text behind the wheel or drive while under the influence, fail to uphold their duty to safely operate a motor vehicle. This is considered a breach of duty, and in the context of personal injury claims, it generally arises from negligence.
- Causation – Proving that a duty existed and was breached in only part of the battle associated with personal injury claims. Victims, and they attorneys, must prove that the breach of duty (or negligence) or the defendant caused their injuries. Specifically, they must prove that the other party’s negligence more likely than not (the burden of proof in civil cases) led to their accident and injuries.
- Damages – When causation can be established, through the clear and convincing presentation of evidence and arguments, victims will be entitled to a financial recovery of the damages they incurred as a direct result of their accident and the injuries they suffered. Commonly, these damages include past and future medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional injuries, and more.
Dedicated to fighting on behalf of injured victims and families who have suffered harm due to the negligence of others, our legal team has cultivated the tools and resources needed to establish the essential legal elements in a range of personal injury claims, including those involving car accidents, truck accidents, catastrophic injuries, and more. If you have questions about a recent accident and injury, we encourage you to contact us for a free consultation.