In this video, I explain what a personal injury case is and what needs to be proven for the case to be successful.
Hello this is Darrell Castle. I’m an attorney licensed to practice law in the state of Tennessee and on this video I’m talking about what a personal injury case is and what are some of the things that a plaintiff’s attorney or an attorney who represents an injured person has to prove in order to be successful.
First of all, in a personal injury case there always has to be someone who is responsible for the injury – liability lawyers call it. There has to be liability. In other words, you have to be able to prove that someone actually was negligent and actually caused the injury.
Here’s an example of a case that I had some time ago that seems obvious on the face of it, but when you look deeper, it’s not obvious at all.
My client was driving down the road in his car and a cement mixer, one of those trucks that has cement in the back that spins around that keeps the cement liquid and so forth, came around the curve in front of him and tipped over. The weight of the cement caused the truck, apparently, to turn over and the truck was going pretty fast so it was spinning around and around on the back of the cement tank. And it came into my clients lane, hit his car, and he was pretty severely injured.
So the question is, who caused the accident?
On the face it seems obvious that it was the driver of the cement mixer but actually he defended himself by saying “it wasn’t my fault, my brakes failed.” In other words, “I wasn’t negligent, my brakes failed.” So we filed suit on that case and we got the records of the cement company. We subpoenaed the records of maintenance on the truck – what they’re required to do when dealing with a commercial vehicle on the highways.
They’re required to perform maintenance on their vehicles on a certain schedule and we found that they had not done that. They had not kept up their own maintenance schedule and the brakes had not been maintained as the law required.
We were able to prove that the cement company was negligent and we made a significant recovery for our client.
That’s a case where it seems obvious but it really isn’t. But always remember that you have to have someone who is negligent – someone who always causes the accident.