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What Is the Difference Between Negligence & Negligence Per Se

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If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by another person, you likely have a personal injury claim against them. A personal injury case aims to compensate injured parties for the losses incurred because of the accident. 

Most personal injury cases are brought as negligence claims. There are two types of negligence: standard negligence and negligence per se. To help accident victims understand their rights, here’s an overview of each type of negligence. 

What Is Negligence in Nevada? 

Most personal injury cases are brought under a negligence legal theory. The basic idea is that an individual’s failure to use reasonable care led to someone else’s injuries. 

There are four elements of a negligence case: 

  1. Duty. The responsible party, or defendant, owed a duty of care to the injured party or plaintiff. 
  2. Breach. The defendant breached the duty of care by failing to act as a reasonable person would. 
  3. Causation. The defendant’s breach caused the plaintiff’s injuries. 
  4. Injury. The plaintiff suffered injuries. 

To prove that a defendant breached the duty of care, you must show that the defendant didn’t act like a reasonable person. What is considered reasonable changes based on the specific facts of each case. In addition, reasonable behavior changes based on the defendant’s role in a particular situation. 

In negligence cases, it’s left to a judge or jury to determine whether a defendant acted reasonably. Establishing that the defendant breached the duty of care can be a high burden of proof that requires significant investing and evidence. 

What Is Negligence Per Se? 

Negligence Per Se is a unique claim that is focused on the violation of a specific law. The idea behind negligence per se is that a defendant’s negligence is assumed because the defendant broke the law. 

In a negligence per se case, a plaintiff must show: 

  1. A relevant statute or regulation that sets a specific standard of care. 
  2. The defendant violated the statute. 
  3. The plaintiff was a member of the group the law is intended to protect. 
  4. The defendant’s actions caused the plaintiff’s injuries. 

Examples of cases involving negligence per se are: 

  • Car accidents caused by speeding 
  • Construction accidents where the defendant violated building codes 
  • Car accidents when the defendant exceeded blood alcohol content limits
  • Product liability cases where the defendant did not comply with consumer product standards 

Negligence per se is usually easier to prove than general negligence. There’s no need for a judge or jury to determine that the defendant was unreasonable. Instead, victims just need to show that the defendant violated an applicable law. Because the defendant violated the law, it’s assumed that the defendant acted unreasonably.

While these cases are easier to prove than general negligence cases, there are some defenses to negligence per se cases. 

Defendants can rebut a negligence per se claim by showing that: 

  1. Complying with the applicable law would have been more dangerous than violating the law; or 
  2. It was impossible to comply with the statute. 

Negligence per se applies to fewer claims than general negligence. It’s only applicable when a relevant law has been violated. In these cases, the statute defines the standard of care, rather than a judge or jury determining the standard of care. 

Contact a Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer for Help With a Negligence Claim

In both negligence and negligence per se cases, victims have to show that the defendant caused the accident and they incurred losses because of the accident. To be successful, the plaintiff has to gather evidence to support the claim. Plus, victims need evidence to show the amount of damages they incurred. 

A Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer can help navigate this process and ensure that accident victims get the compensation they deserve. 

A personal injury lawyer can analyze your case and give you a personalized strategy.

Contact a Las Vegas Personal Lawyer at De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers For Help Today

If you’ve been injured in Las Vegas, NV, and need legal help contact our Las Vegas personal injury attorneys at De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers to schedule a free case evaluation today.

De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers – Las Vegas Office
1149 S Maryland Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV. 89104
(702) 222-9999
Open 24 hours

De Castroverde Accident & Injury LawyersSummerlin Office
410 S Rampart Blvd, Ste 480 Las Vegas, NV. 89145
(702) 297-6373
Open 24 hours

De Castroverde Accident & Injury LawyersHenderson Office
9555 S Eastern Ave, Las Vegas, NV. 89123
(702) 997-4264
Open 24 hours

Areas We Serve

At De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers our personal injury lawyers serve the following localities: Angel Park, Anthem, Boulder City, Downtown Las Vegas, East Las Vegas, Gibson Springs, Green Valley, Henderson, Lake Las Vegas, MacDonald Ranch, McCullough Hills, Mission Hills, Paradise, Peccole Ranch, Queensridge, Reno, Seven Hills, Smoke Ranch, Spring Valley, Summerlin, The Lakes, The Strip, Whitney, and more.
We also represent accident victims in Oakland, CA.

About Our Firm

De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers, located in Las Vegas, NV, is a personal injury law firm established over 30 years ago.
We have 100+ years of combined experience securing hundreds of millions for injured people throughout Nevada. If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, contact us today to discuss your case.

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