The causes of personal injury cases generally fall into two categories: negligence and recklessness. While most people understand the common definition of those words, some are confused with how they are used in the context of an injury settlement. To help you understand what recklessness in personal injury means and how it differs from negligence, the personal injury attorneys at Patterson Legal Group offer the following information.
Negligence vs. Recklessness = Passive vs. Active
In the most basic sense, think of negligence as passive behavior and recklessness as active behavior. For example, say you suffered a slip and fall injury because of a wet floor. The property owner or business owner had a duty to keep the floor dry, but failed to do so. In this particular case, your injury was caused by negligence because a person or party failed to do something.
Personal injuries caused by recklessness are the result of active behavior. Let’s use an example of injuries caused by a car accident. The norm is for people to keep their eyes on the road and both hands on the wheel, for the safety of the driver and other motorists. Say a driver crashes into you because they were speeding excessively while eating a sandwich and looking up sports scores on a mobile phone. The driver knows that their actions are wrong, but actively chooses to drive in such a manner. That active behavior would be considered recklessness.
Elements of Recklessness in Personal Injury
Now that you understand that negligence is passive behavior and recklessness is active behavior, you can apply its definition to a personal injury lawsuit. The factors to keep in mind if you believe that your injuries were caused by recklessness include:
- A person or party engaged in behavior that could cause harm
- They knew that their behavior could cause harm
- A person or party chose to behave in such a manner despite this knowledge
- Their behavior caused your injuries
More Examples of Recklessness in Personal Injury
As mentioned above, think of recklessness in personal injury as active or voluntary behavior. Legally speaking, it is a conscious action that causes an accident. Examples of this include:
- Impaired Driving
- Excessive Speeding
- Ignoring Stop Signs or Traffic Lights
- Crossing a Street When the Signal Says “Don’t Walk”
- Car or Motorcycle Racing on Public Streets
- Playing Games on a Phone Instead of Watching the Road
Contact Patterson Legal Group
Whether your injuries were caused by negligence or recklessness, you need an experienced personal injury lawyer by your side to make sure that you get the money that you deserve. Let the compassionate attorneys at Patterson Legal Group take care of all your legal needs so that you can focus on recovery. Our lawyers have a proven track record of winning clients the highest settlement possible while treating you with the respect they deserve.
Patterson Legal Group represents injury victims in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Wyoming. We offer free consultations and work on a “no win, no fee” basis. That means that you don’t pay a dime unless our lawyers recover money on your behalf. Take the first step towards the settlement that you deserve by calling us at (888) 687-2400 or connecting with us online through LiveChat or secure contact form.