There are a myriad of ways in which an individual can be injured. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that there are a variety of different types of personal injury lawsuits. Each different type of personal injury lawsuit is similar in that each attempts to establish legal liability based on negligence (or carelessness). Every personal injury lawsuit must also be established by proof by a preponderance of the evidence – proof suggesting a proposition is more likely than not true. However, each different type of lawsuit may require proof of different factual propositions in order to prevail.
What Are the Common Types of Personal Injury Lawsuits?
Some of the more common types of personal injury lawsuits include:
- Personal Injury Accidents: When you suffer a personal injury at the hands of someone else, that person may be held responsible for your injuries. You must generally show that the other individual owed you a duty of care but breached that due through careless conduct. You must also show that the other person’s careless behavior caused your injuries and that your injuries and losses can be compensated through a monetary award.
- Car Accidents: In a car accident case, the person alleged to have caused injury to another driver or passenger is said to have owed an obligation to the injury victim to drive his or her vehicle in a safe and reasonable manner but violated this duty through careless or reckless driving. Car accidents may require the use of expert witnesses like reconstruction experts and/or engineers to prove that one driver’s careless behavior caused the injuries of the victim driver.
- Premises Liability: Property owners in California who invite others onto their property for personal or business reasons (such as a friend who opens her house for a neighborhood party or a business that sells products to the community) owe a duty to those individuals who come onto their property. This “duty” requires property owners to perform reasonable inspections of their properties and look for hazards or dangers that can harm visitors to the property. Property owners must take reasonable steps (under the circumstances) to identify these hazards for guests and/or correct the hazardous condition. Property owners who maintain a pool on their own property may also be held accountable under the legal doctrine of “attractive nuisance” if they fail to take appropriate measures to prevent children from trespassing onto their property to use the property owner’s pool or pond (or other similar feature on the property owner’s land).
- Product Liability: No one purchases a simple household product like a light bulb or an over-the-counter medication expecting that the product will cause a serious injury to them or a family member. Yet every year thousands of individuals are hurt when defective products cause unintentional injuries. Manufacturers of products who release defective products into the marketplace can be held responsible for the injuries that their defective products cause. A design defect exists when a product is designed in a way that makes it unnecessarily dangerous to a reasonable consumer. A manufacturing defect occurs when a product is designed to be safe but there is an error in the manufacturing process that makes a particular product unsafe. A warning defect exists when a product’s packaging or casing does not adequately warn a consumer about the dangers the product presents to consumers if the product is used as directed.
A California personal injury attorney should be familiar with the various types of personal injury lawsuits and the factual propositions that need to be proven to prevail in each type of lawsuit so that he or she can assist any personal injury victim with his or her legal needs.