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The Element of ‘Causation’ in Florida Personal Injury Cases

injuryIf you have been hurt in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongful act, you need to reach out to a skilled Miami personal injury attorney who can assess the merits of your case. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, we are committed to helping our clients understand their rights and helping them secure the compensation they deserve for their harm.

Negligence is a fundamental concept in personal injury cases. Personal injury cases are a way for people to be compensated for the wrongdoings of a third party that culminated in their sustaining an injury. Examples of serious accidents include car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, defective product incidents, medical malpractice, slip and falls, and construction accidents.

Personal injury cases are typically rooted in the theory of negligence. Negligence takes place when an individual causes an injury or death by failing to use reasonable care in their actions. Reasonable care is defined as how a prudent person would act under the same or similar circumstances. It is important to note that negligence can also occur when a person fails to act when he or she had a duty to do so. In order to establish negligence, the plaintiff must establish:

  • The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty to use reasonable care;
  • The defendant breached the duty;
  • The defendant’s breach was a direct and proximate cause of the accident and the plaintiff’s resulting damages.

The Florida Supreme Court has held that whether or not proximate causation applies is a question of fact. Florida Standard Jury Instruction (FSJI) 401.12(a) defines the concept of legal causation. Under this section, a defendant’s negligence is the legal cause of an injury if it “directly and in natural and in continuous sequence produces or contributes substantially to producing such injury, so that it can reasonably be said that, but for the negligence, the injury would not have occurred.”

The element of causation is a core component of every Florida negligence claim. When a plaintiff files a negligence claim, he or she is asserting that the defendant is the actual and direct cause of the injuries suffered. For example, if a car driver is speeding and rear-ends you at a red light, that driver would almost certainly be a direct and proximate cause of your accident and the resulting injuries – absent some intervening factor. In such a case, you would be able to establish causation relatively easily. The causation element must be satisfied in order to recover any damages from the defendant.

If you or someone close to you has been hurt in an accident that was not your fault, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your harm. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our Miami car accident attorneys are ready to analyze the facts of your case and come up with a legal strategy accordingly. For more information, do not hesitate to call us at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) or reach out to us online today.

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