How to Defend a Gross Negligence Claim

a hand-cuffed medical practitionerAn alleged victim might claim gross negligence if the alleged defendant acted unreasonably negligent and caused harm to the victim. A victim might claim that your actions were grossly negligent even if you didn’t really intend to cause harm. These situations include slip and fall claims, medical professional negligence, legal malpractice, and car accidents. To defend yourself from a gross negligence claim, you would need to address the following:

Duty of Care

You must prove that you acted with reasonable care given the incident’s specific circumstances. Reasonable care refers to the way an individual with a common degree of social responsibility and/or degree of reason would’ve acted given the same circumstances.

Breach of Duty of Care

You must show undisputable proof that you didn’t breach your duty, meaning you exercised reasonable care to make sure you don’t damage property or cause injury to another individual. Conversely, breach of duty means you didn’t use reasonable care, leading to another individual’s injury or property damage. For instance, treating the wrong part of the patient’s body could be grounds for a lawsuit, explains a renowned medical malpractice attorney in Springfield, IL.

Damages

These are the actual financial, emotional, and physical losses an alleged victim incurred because of your supposed grossly negligent actions. You must prove that you shouldn’t be held liable for the damages because you exercised reasonable care.

Causation

You must establish that you didn’t breach your duty; consequently, your alleged negligent acts couldn’t have resulted in the victim’s injury. In the event that you fail to prove these arguments, your lawyer might argue that while you acted negligently, it wasn’t gross negligence, because a charge of gross negligence comes with more severe consequences than a typical negligence charge. Consequences usually include paying the victim punitive and compensatory damages.

The former monetary awards developed to prevent convicted individuals from performing negligent actions again, while the latter is designed for reimbursing the victim’s healthcare costs, court costs, lost wages, and related financial losses. In addition, you could face criminal charges depending on the circumstances of the claim against you. It’s best to hire an experienced and reliable defense attorney during such a challenging situation.