If you have suffered an injury be it as a result of a road traffic accident, workplace accident or a slip and fall in a public place, there are four basic elements which establish a cause of action.
First of all, you the Plaintiff must prove that the Defendant (the other party) had a duty to you. In other words if you were a passenger in a vehicle the driver has a duty of care to ensure that you are not injured due to their reckless or dangerous driving. If you a driver of a vehicle other road users have a duty to ensure that they do not drive in such a manner such as reckless so as to endanger other road users.
Secondly, you must show that the other party was negligent that is to say that the Defendant either failed to do something or conducted an act thereby placing you the Plaintiff at risk of harm.
Thirdly, you must show that the Defendants negligent conduct caused the harm that you complain of i.e. that their failure to take appropriate action resulted in you suffering an injury.
Fourthly, we must show that you were in fact harmed you must prove evidence of your injury.
Very often engineering evidence, will be sought to prove that the actions or inactions of the Defendant were negligent. An Engineer or a Garda can advance evidence that the speed was travelling in excess of the speed limit thereby amounting to negligent conduct. An Engineer can be used to show that a floor surface was particularly slippy when wet, thereby causing the Plaintiff to slip.
Medical evidence produced by your GP, Consultant or Physiotherapist can be used to prove the injury suffered by you the Plaintiff.
*In contentious business a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.
**This information is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal or professional advice. Professional or legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this publication. No liability is accepted by McElhinney & Associates for any action taken in reliance on the information contained herein. Any and all information is subject to change.