Common negligence arguments used in Texas personal injury cases:
Anytime a personal injury claim is being put together, choices have to be made regarding how the case will be argued. All personal injury claims are negligence claims. But there are many different kinds of negligence claims depending on the circumstances surrounding the negligent act(s).
In this article, attorney Michael Grossman will explain different types of negligence causes of action that have been sanctified by Texas courts, and highlight some scenarios that may help you understand which theory of negligence can be applied your personal injury case.
What kinds of misconduct precipitate a negligence lawsuit?
In the following articles we'll look in closer detail at each common argument. There you'll get a better idea of what Texas law has to say regarding each negligence argument and how they might impact your personal injury claim. Common negligence arguments include:
- Negligent entrustment
Negligent entrustment is normally associated with vehicles. However, other property called "chattels" fall under this category as well. For example, if someone were to loan their chainsaw to their neighbor's 10-year-old to cut down a tree. That chainsaw in itself isn't an illegal thing to possess of course, however, loaning it to a minor who obviously, due to youth, is unable to responsibly use the chainsaw is in itself negligent entrustment.
- Negligent supervision
This type of negligence could be a work supervisor, a camp counselor, or a guardian of any kind charged with the duty of making sure that anyone under their car is to be given the opportunity to be as safe as possible. A good example of this would be if Bobby were at summer camp and during a particularly challenging evolution, the camp counselor, who has been charged with the duty to watch out for safety hazards, was on her cell phone chatting about weekend plans. Which led to Bobby falling off the log that he was running across and injuring himself. The counselor breached her duty, that breach of duty (supervision of safety), led to Bobby falling off the log and being injured.
- Negligent hiring
Negligent hiring is when a supervisor, who is given the duty to hire competent and safe employees, hires an employee who the supervisor knew was a safety risk. The employer owes a duty to his employees to hire, supervise, train, or retain competent employees. If the employer breaches that duty and the proximate cause contributed to another employees injury, then that would fall under the negligent hiring argument.
- Negligent training
Negligent training is when an employer or supervisor who has been charged with duty of training fails to provide or facilitate proper training which then results in an injury. A good example would be if a construction worker was told to use a new table saw and had not received training prior to using that saw. The untrained employee then injures another worker who was helping to guide a piece of wood that they were cutting due to him not having the proper training to avoid this dangerous situation. The supervisor has a duty to make sure that the employee is competent enough to use that type of saw and the employee understands all of risks involved in using that equipment.
- Negligent handling of animals
A good example of this type of negligence would be if someone was letting their dog roam free in their yard and a child was riding his bike on the public sidewalk by the house. The dog then chases the child on the bike which causes the child to ride as fast as possible and veer onto the road where he crashes causing a broken arm. The dog owner breached his duty by allowing his dog to be unsupervised and off a leash, which then led to the child breaking his arm due to being chased by the dog. The negligence on behalf of the dog owner led to the child crashing his bike and breaking his arm.
How These Arguments Impact Your Case
Luckily, regardless of the specific argument(s) involved in your case, the elements you have the burden to prove remain the same. In a negligence case there are four elements, and all must be proven in order for you to win your case. These elements are:
- The defendant owed a legal duty to the plaintiff
- The defendant breached that legal duty
- The breach was the proximate cause of the plaintiff's injuries
- The plaintiff suffered injuries, incurred damages
An experienced lawyer will know how to properly investigate your situation in order to put you in the best possible position to be successful with your negligence claim.
Grossman Law Offices has the experience you can trust and grit to get the job done.
At Grossman Law Offices, we have over 25 years of experience handling claims in the state of Texas. We've won thousands of cases, and we know personal injury law better than most. If you have questions about your claim, common negligence arguments, or how to get your claim started, we're happy to assist you however we can. Not only are we available for questions, but we have experienced attorneys available to speak with you 24/7. If you'd like to give us a call and get us working on your case for you, we can be reached at (855) 326-0000.