In the following article, we’ll examine 3 examples of negligence resulting in a personal injury—and how these careless and wrongful actions can change a person’s life in a second.
If you or someone close to you was the victim of negligence like this, remember that you have the law in your corner. Personal injury lawyers like ours at Buckingham & Vega Law Firm devote their careers to fighting for your rights.
No one should have to live with the financial, physical, and emotional consequences of someone else’s negligence. Our job is to make sure you’re made whole again, and to ensure the at-fault party takes full responsibility for how they harmed you.
What Is Negligence in Personal Injury Law?
Negligence is a legal term that has a specific definition in civil (tort) law. It’s more than just being careless. Negligence is when a party fails to behave in the way a reasonable person should have behaved under the given circumstances.
There are four elements that must be met in order for an action (or omission) to be considered negligence resulting in a personal injury. These criteria involve the defendant (the alleged at-fault party) and the plaintiff (the party taking legal action).
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care.
- The defendant breached the duty of care they owed to the plaintiff.
- The plaintiff suffered an injury with verifiable losses.
- The plaintiff’s injuries were a direct result of the defendant’s breach of duty.
Now, let’s look at how different actions can be considered negligence in different situations.
Example #1: Motor Vehicle Negligence
When you drive a motor vehicle, you make a promise that you will do so safely.
You must undergo training and practice, obtain the proper license, and follow the rules of the road. As a driver, you have a duty of care to act reasonably—in a way that does not harm other motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and others sharing the roads.
There are many examples of traffic negligence that can result in personal injury.
Common Types of Motor Vehicle Negligence
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Texting and driving
- Manipulating a cell phone
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Breaking traffic laws
- Reckless driving or road rage
If any of these (or other) examples of negligence resulted in personal injury to you or a family member, it is your right to recover compensation for the losses the defendant caused.
Our Albuquerque car accident attorneys can review your legal options with you. We can help you obtain the full financial recovery that can go toward medical bills, vehicle repair costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Example #2: Medical Malpractice
Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals have an even greater duty of care—beyond what the average person owes to others—because of their roles as health care providers. When you see a doctor, you put your life in their hands. The duty of care a physician owes you reflects that heightened responsibility.
Proving the negligence of a health care professional involves demonstrating that:
- The doctor (or other medical provider) owed you a duty of care due to a doctor-patient relationship
- The doctor violated their duty of care to you
- The breach of duty caused your injuries
- You sustained provable losses because of your injury
Medical malpractice can be harder to prove than other types of negligence. To successfully handle a medical negligence case, you will need a team of medical malpractice lawyers who can find the evidence to prove that your healthcare provider acted outside of the reasonable standards another professional would have followed.
Here are a few ways that doctors, nurses, and other professionals may act negligently, causing personal injury to a patient.
Common Types of Medical Negligence
- Failing to check a patient’s allergies and medical history before prescribing a drug
- Administering too much or too little anesthesia
- Operating on the wrong patient or wrong body part
- Not diagnosing a condition correctly
- Misreading test or medical imaging results
- Practicing medicine while intoxicated
- Using defective medical devices or expired medications
- Failing to treat a condition properly and promptly
Example #3: Property Owner Negligence
The duty of care a property owner owes to a visitor depends on why the visitor is on the property. For example, a landlord has more of a duty to tenants than a homeowner has to a trespasser crossing their property grounds.
This can make establishing negligence more complicated when a personal injury occurs on another person’s property. Cases involving an injury on another party’s property are called premises liability cases.
In general, property owners in New Mexico, whether they are business owners or private property owners, have a duty to keep their premises safe. Property should be free from foreseeable hazards and not pose a threat to guests or tenants.
If a visitor suffers a personal injury and it can be shown that the property owner was negligent, the victim may be entitled to compensation for their medical bills and other damages, usually through the property owner’s insurance policy.
Common Types of Property Owner Negligence
Negligence might be if a property owner:
- Leaves fall hazards like spills, broken tiles, or damaged flooring unrepaired
- Allows a dangerous dog to roam without a fence or leash
- Fails to fix faulty wiring or other electrical hazards
- Doesn’t ensure safe premises by implementing adequate security measures
- Leaves a swimming pool open and unattended
- Allows toxins like asbestos or hazardous chemicals to permeate premises
- In any way puts guests, visitors, or tenants at risk through actions or failures to act when needed
Because property owner negligence resulting in personal injury can be difficult to prove, it’s important to work with a premises liability lawyer in Albuquerque who has local experience with these types of cases.
Let Us Help You After a Personal Injury—For Free
You have a right to know your options after negligence causes your personal injury. And you shouldn’t have to pay for that information. That’s why Buckingham & Vega Law Firm has made the decision to provide 100% free case consultations, and to only get paid if we win your case.
Everyone, no matter their current financial means, should have equal access to high-quality legal representation right here in Albuquerque.
After we’ve looked at examples of negligence resulting in a personal injury, you may have a better idea of whether negligence played a role in your own injury event. If it did, we can help you hold the wrongdoers accountable for their actions.
Call (505) 388-0066 or fill out the contact form on our website to get in touch with us. We’ll schedule you for a free case consult with the personal injury attorney best matched to your case type.