A negligent driver may be held liable for damages he or she causes, in cases that result in property damage, injury or death. Last year, a 36-year-old man caused a crash that killed a woman and her teenage son. The man was recently convicted in a criminal case, but the family may still be able to fight for compensation for the personal injury and wrongful death that occurred as a result of the crash through a personal injury suit.
CBS Chicago reported that the incident occurred in the Jefferson Park neighborhood in August 2011. The news station reported that the man crashed his Ford Mustang into the woman’s parked car. According to CBS, the woman was in the driver’s seat, her teenage son was in the passenger seat, and the woman’s stepson, toddler son, and family friend were also in the vehicle. The woman’s stepson, the toddler, and the family friend were reportedly injured as a result of the accident.
According to CBS Chicago, Cook County prosecutors stated that the man was driving with marijuana in his system. Driving while intoxicated is a factor used to determine negligence in a personal injury case.
Negligence in motor vehicle accidents
The law of torts usually governs legal claims that arise from car accidents. Determining which party is at fault after a car accident often times comes down to finding out who was negligent.
Drivers must exercise reasonable care at all times; if they fail to exercise reasonable care, they may be found negligent. The injured party is responsible for proving that the other driver was negligent. In order to prove this, the injured plaintiff must show that the defendant driver owed a duty to the injured, that the defendant’s actions were negligent, the defendant’s actions of the accused were the proximate cause of the accident and that the accident caused the injuries suffered by the injured plaintiff.
In some instances, the defendant can be found negligent simply for violating a statute, such as the speed limit. A personal injury defendant may try to mitigate his or her responsibility by claiming the injured driver was contributory negligent in his or her injury.
Someone who has been injured in a car accident caused by a negligent or reckless driver could benefit from consulting with a personal injury attorney experienced in handling car accident cases. An experienced personal injury attorney will work to preserve the accident victim’s rights and fight for the victim’s right to recovery.