Establishing liability after a road traffic accident

Establishing Liability After A Road Traffic Accident

Being injured in a road traffic accident can be a life-changing event. In the blink of an eye, your everyday life has been thrown into a confusion of pain, distress, and upheaval, at times through no fault of your own.

When others are at fault for the accident, you do not have to suffer the consequences in silence, you can take legal action.

What Can You Claim for A Road Traffic Accident?

You are entitled to claim for any type of loss or injury that comes about because of a road traffic accident. Some of the most common injuries and losses claimed include:

  • Bruises, cuts, burns, and lesions
  • Minor ‘soft-tissue’ injuries such as whiplash
  • Fractures, and broken bones
  • Trauma to the head or brain
  • Psychological harm
  • Cost of recovering damaged property
  • Lost earnings and loss of future earnings potential
  • Pain and suffering

Do I Need to be The Driver to Make a Claim?

Anyone who’s involved in an accident can make a claim. Compensation is available for drivers and passengers in cars and other vehicles, including motorcycles. Cyclists and pedestrians, including children, may also be able to make their claims if they were involved in a road traffic accident.

How Can a Claim Be Successful?

For a negligence claim to succeed in a road traffic claim a plaintiff must prove the following:

That they were owed a duty of care; and There was a breach of duty of care. That the breach caused the injury (causation), and that the injury was reasonably foreseeable.

What is a Duty of Care?

As a road user, you owe a legal ‘duty of care’ to all other road users. This means you are obliged to take reasonable care to ensure any action you take, or any action you fail to take, does not cause injury to another road user, or property damage. This applies to motorists, pedestrians, horse riders and cyclists. The standard of care expected by learner driver motorists is that of the ordinarily skilled driver.

How Would You Breach Duty of Care?

The defendant’s liability in a road traffic accident normally arises because of negligence. In most cases, McPartland & Son deals with involve drivers who have caused an accident because they failed to pay attention whilst driving, with no consideration to other road users.

In general, claimants will always recover full damages unless there is a defence of causation or contributory negligence.

The Breach caused the Injury

There must be a causal relationship between the conduct (i.e., the negligent act) and the damage sustained. The question legal representatives will ask is “If it wasn’t for the accident, would my client have suffered the injury or loss?”.

The injury is Foreseeability

The plaintiff can only recover the reasonably foreseeable loss that can be shown to follow as a direct consequence of the breach. Remote loss or injuries that cannot be directly linked to the subject accident will be classified as unforeseeable and therefore will not satisfy this part of the test.

If you have sustained injuries because of a road traffic accident that was not your fault, please contact McPartland & Sons Solicitors to discuss your options.

Related Blogs:

What are the consequences of driving offences?

What to do if you are involved in a car accident

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