Car Accident Lawyer

If someone has, through their direct action or negligence, caused you to suffer a personal injury, you may have the right to seek the remedy of a financial reimbursement through a personal injury lawsuit. Often, injured parties wonder if they can demonstrate in court that the harm they experienced was in fact the responsibility of the other party. Thus, frequently the question arises, what is the burden of proving another person’s responsibility in a personal injury lawsuit?

Contact a personal injury lawyer today to learn more about how negligence principles apply to your case. We have helped hundreds of clients with their personal injury matters. 

What Does “Burden of Proof” Mean

The American legal system is adversarial. When a person is accused of an action that harms someone else, in a civil action it is up to the injured person to demonstrate a wrong has been committed and that it was perpetrated by accused the person. If, on the other hand, a law has been broken, it is a criminal case. Then usually it is the state or federal government who prosecutes the offender. In every case, there is a burden of proof that must be met. This means it must be demonstrated that something wrong occurred and the person or persons accused are in fact responsible.

Why Are There Different Degrees of Proof?

In a civil suit where you have suffered a personal injury, you as the plaintiff would file a complaint alleging that the defendant was at fault in causing the harm. The defendant would then respond to the allegations. Essentially both of you would have the burden of proving your case. There are differing degrees in the burden of proof. Some of the most common are:

  • Reasonable suspicion: police use this as the low bar of why they may stop and question an individual.
  • Probable cause: this is a higher standard of proof that is required to indict someone of a crime.
  • Preponderance of evidence: this is a standard often used in civil cases. Essentially it means that something is more likely than not to be the case.
  • Clear and convincing evidence: this standard is not as high as “beyond a reasonable doubt,” but it implies that the evidence presented is virtually incontrovertible.

Do You Have a Provable Personal Injury Case?

The primary mistake most individuals make regarding the potential of a personal injury case is not checking with a lawyer as to the viability of a possible suit. As officers of the court, attorneys deal constantly with issues of proof and liability and can help you decide whether or not to pursue a case.

Thanks to Unidos Legales for their expertise in personal injury law.