To recover compensation for injuries you sustained in a car accident, you must be able to prove that the other driver's negligent actions caused the crash that led to your injuries. In an incident involving negligence per se, establishing fault may be more straightforward.
Greg Coleman Law’s Knoxville car accident attorneys explain how this legal doctrine can be applied in certain car accident cases. Contact our firm today and arrange for your free, no-obligation car accident consultation with one of our qualified lawyers.
When Does Negligence Per Se Apply in a Tennessee Car Accident?
Negligence per se means that a person is inherently negligent if he or she breaks a law that is designed to protect others.
In the case of a car crash, negligence per se may apply if the at-fault driver broke one of these traffic laws and caused the accident by:
- Running a red light
- Texting while driving
- Reckless driving
- Driving under the influence
- Failing to yield right-of-way
When the At-Fault Party May Have a Legal Defense
The defendant may challenge your claim of negligence per se with a small number of valid defenses that may excuse a violation of public safety laws, including:
- The defendant was incapacitated - If the defendant suffered a heart attack or other medical emergency and it caused him or her to lose control of the vehicle, negligence per se may not apply.
- The defendant did his or her due diligence - He or she attempted to follow the law but could not avoid a collision.
- There was an emergency - An emergency event not related to the defendant’s legal violation occurred, such as debris suddenly falling into the defendant’s path.
- The defendant’s legal violation was for the greater good - If the defendant had followed the law, it would have led to more harm.
Establishing Negligence Per Se Applies in Your Accident
When negligence per se is applicable to your accident, the defendant’s duty of care and failure to uphold that duty are both automatically acknowledged and the plaintiff does not have the challenge of proving these complicated components of negligence.
However, the injured victim still has to provide supporting evidence of negligence per se. A experienced lawyer understands how to gather strong evidence and build a strong argument to provide proof of the defendant’s negligent actions, such as:
- Providing proof that the defendant broke a municipal, state or federal law
- The plaintiff is meant to be protected by the law that was broken by the defendant.
- The plaintiff’s injuries are related to the defendant’s violation of a public safety law, and because of this violation, the plaintiff suffered an injury which the violated law was meant to prevent.
- The primary cause behind the plaintiff’s injury was the defendant’s legal violation. The injury would not have been sustained if the defendant was not breaking a public safety law.
If another factor contributed to the plaintiff’s injury, negligence per se may not be applicable to the case.
Get Help from a Trusted Attorney Today
If you were injured in a car accident caused by another's negligent actions, we are prepared to help.
At Greg Coleman Law, we have extensive experience representing victims and helping them to recover maximum compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Schedule your free legal consultation today and learn what legal options may apply in your situation. There are no upfront fees to retain our services, and payment is only due if we recover compensation on your behalf.
Contact us 24/7 by online chat or phone: (865) 247-0080