Negligence Lawsuit for Injury and Wrongful Death


negligence-lawsuitA Seattle family has initiated a $45 million negligence lawsuit against the city authorities holding their slackness responsible for a car accident that led to the death of two family members and injury to another two. The negligence lawsuit alleges that the city authorities failed in their duty to install interlock device on the vehicle of the driver, who had been caught five times previously for DUI and was on probation on the day of the accident. A South Carolina woman won $9.9 million in negligence injury lawsuit filed against an amusement park. The plaintiff suffered brain injury after falling from a ride. She attributed her injury to the reckless operation of the ride that led to twice the approval speed.

On July 22, 2013, a Polk County court awarded $1.1 billion compensation in a medical negligence lawsuit filed against a Florida nursing home. Sixty-nine-year-old Arlene Townsend died at the Auburndale Oaks Healthcare Center following injuries received from multiple falls. Next day, a 20-year-old California woman won $27.1 million in a negligence lawsuit. She suffered from brain injury after the boat she was riding on hit a jet ski. The boat operating company had employed a teenage driver, who failed to control the boat at a high speed.


What Is Negligence Lawsuit?

Negligence refers to the failure to exercise reasonable care by prudent persons or authorities as demanded by the situation. The tort law recognizes any injury caused by carelessness without any intentional action as the ground for negligence lawsuit. The basic idea is that everyone is expected to do their duty with reasonable care and ensure that their inaction or negligence in duty should not cause harm to others.

A number of factors constitute negligence and can be subject to litigation. These include,

  • Carelessness
  • Failure to act prudently
  • Dereliction of duty
  • Unreasonable action
  • Behaving in a negligent manner
  • Failure to respect safety of others
  • Lack of prompt or adequate action
  • Vicarious or secondary responsibility
  • Failure to recognize potential hazards and act to prevent them

Negligence lawsuit is a civil litigation that can be initiated by an injured person against private agencies or public authorities responsible for carelessness that caused him harm to recover compensable damages. Nursing home negligence lawsuit, administration negligence lawsuit, car accident negligence lawsuit, property owner negligence lawsuit, pet owner negligence lawsuit, school negligence lawsuit, employee negligence lawsuit are some of the types of common negligence lawsuits.

Negligence Lawsuit : Key Elements Determining the Liability

Negligence is just one aspect of the liability law. It must be proven to establish the liability and claim compensation. The following four are key elements in determining the liability in a negligence lawsuit.

Duty of Care of the Defendant

The plaintiff must showcase that the defendant had a duty of care toward ensuing safety for the former. Such a duty should be legally valid, making it an obligation for the defendant to perform under a particular circumstance. For example, while carrying out construction work, one must ensure that no one gets injured due to excavations or falling of construction materials. Similarly, public authorities must ensure that there is no hazard for children in parks or sidewalks.

Breach of Duty

The negligence lawsuit must accompany adequate evidence proving that the defendant was negligent in doing their duty or unknowingly breached it. They should be guilty of carelessness or failure to exercise reasonable care in fulfilling their duty.


The primary cause of harm to the plaintiff must be the defendant's act or inaction. There should be evidence suggesting that there would have been no injury or damage had the defendant not acted in a particular way (Cause in Fact principle). The injury must fall within the scope of the risks posed by the action of the defendant (Proximate Cause principle).


There should be quantifiable damage of some kind caused by the action of the defendant. It may include physical pain, loss of life, disability, emotional suffering, medical expenses, loss of job, or damage to movable or immovable property.

Negligence Lawsuit : Statute of Limitations

A negligence lawsuit should be filed within a stipulated time set by the state statute of limitations. The time allowed depends on the type of litigations. For example, in Florida, medical negligence lawsuits must be filed within two years and there is a four-year time limit for other negligence litigations. In California, it is three years for medical negligence lawsuits and two years for other negligence lawsuits, considered as personal injury ligation's.

Negligence Lawsuit : Compensation

  • One can seek compensation for both financial and non-financial losses suffered. The most common damages claimed include medical expenditure, loss of wage, property damaged, and emotional trauma.
  • Punitive damages have become an important part of the overall negligence injury compensation.
  • In some states, the compensation is reduced or rejected based on the principle of contributory negligence, which refers to the carelessness of the plaintiff that led to the injury.

Negligence Lawsuits

In July 2013, a Florida nursing home was asked to pay $1.1 billion to the family of a 69-year-old-lady, who died because of injury received from repeated falls. The court held the nursing home negligent in taking adequate care of the patient. A similar medical negligence lawsuit led to $8.5 million compensation award against a Cleveland hospital.

A South Carolina woman won $9.9 million in damages in a negligence lawsuit filed against the management of an amusement park. The jury agreed with her contention that the park management failed to ensure that rides in the park were not operated at a more-than-recommended speed. She fell from the ride and suffered a brain injury.

A federal jury awarded $18.5 million to an Oregon woman against Equifax Information Services for their negligence in fixing mistakes in her credit report for more than two years.

A California man won $530,000 against his city council for becoming negligent in maintaining sidewalks at a public park. In another negligence lawsuit, a Chicago construction firm paid $200,000 to a family to settle the litigation filed over damage to their property caused by the construction debris.