Catastrophic injuries can have life-changing impacts on individuals, often leaving them with long-term disabilities, loss of income, and significant physical and emotional pain.
In such cases, it is crucial to determine liability, i.e., who is responsible for the injuries and the consequences that follow. Liability in catastrophic injury cases is a complex issue, and many factors come into play when determining who is at fault.
In this blog post, we'll explore some of these factors, helping you to better understand how liability works in catastrophic injury cases.
Negligence and Fault
In most catastrophic injury cases, fault is assigned based on the principle of negligence. A person or entity can be held liable if they have acted with negligence or were responsible for breaching the duty of care owed to the victim.
Negligence means failing to act with reasonable care in a way that could have prevented harm. For example, if a vehicle driver ran a red light and caused an accident that led to catastrophic injuries to someone in the other vehicle, the driver would be held liable for negligence.
Vicarious liability is another factor that comes into play in catastrophic injury cases, particularly those involving employers and employees.
Vicarious liability refers to the legal responsibility that an employer bears for the actions of their employees while in the scope of their employment.
For example, if an employee causes a catastrophic injury while driving a company-owned car, the employer can be held vicariously liable for the actions of their employee.
Product liability arises when a product is determined to be defective and causes catastrophic injuries. In such cases, the manufacturer or the seller of the product can be held liable for the damages caused.
For example, if a consumer suffers a catastrophic injury due to a defective airbag in their automobile, the manufacturer of the airbag or the carmaker can be held liable.
Determining damages is a crucial part of any catastrophic injury case. Damages refer to the losses suffered by the victim, including medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and other costs associated with the injury.
A catastrophic injury can cause significant financial losses, and it is essential to properly assess and calculate the damages suffered by the victim.
Comparative negligence is another factor that can impact liability in catastrophic injury cases. Comparative negligence refers to situations where the injured party shares some responsibility for the accident or the events that led to the injury.
In such cases, the damages awarded to the injured party are reduced by the percentage of their fault. For instance, if the court finds that the plaintiff was 20% responsible for the accident that led to their injury, the damages awarded would be reduced by 20%.
We Can Help the Catastrophically Injured
In sum, determining liability in catastrophic injury cases is a complex issue that depends on various factors, including negligence, vicarious liability, product liability, damages, and comparative negligence.
It is essential to seek the advice of an experienced attorney from Fischer Redavid PLLC who can assess the factors involved in your case and help you understand your legal options.
Remember, each case is unique, and the legal process can be overwhelming, but with the right guidance, you can navigate through it and receive the compensation you deserve.