California Negligence Laws

California, like every other state, has specific laws governing negligence. In broad strokes, negligent acts are those in which an individual or entity fails to provide the appropriate level of care to another party.

The main concept you will want to familiarize yourself with in a case involving negligence is the standard of comparative fault, which is used to apportion liability among parties, regardless of the nature of the accident.

Below, we will briefly review what constitutes negligence while discussing some types of injury that fall under the scope of California negligence law.


What Constitutes Negligence

For an action to be considered negligent in California, five conditions must be met:

  • The defendant had a duty to meet, whether through committing or refraining from committing an act.
  • The defendant somehow breached this duty.
  • There is proof that the defendant’s breach of duty caused the plaintiff harm.
  • There is proof that the defendant should have known about the dangers of his or her negligent behavior.
  • There is demonstrable proof of harm incurred (e.g., medical expenses, lost wages or earning potential, etc.)

This standard of what constitutes negligence in California is identical to that of many other states.


Common Types of Injuries and Losses

Although every case differs in some way from the next, there are generally some common denominators between personal injury cases that involve negligence.

For example, accidents caused by negligence often lead to the same types of serious injuries, some of which include the following:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Face and eye damage
  • Spine damage
  • Amputations
  • Burns
  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Organ damage
  • Internal bleeding
  • Death

In addition, similar types of losses are often suffered, such as medical expenses, lost wages or earning potential, pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of consortium, and diminished quality of life.

As for types of injurious accidents that involve negligence, they run the gamut. Anything from a car accident to a slip-and-fall accident at a restaurant can be grounds for filing a personal injury claim in California.


Call a California Injury Attorney

Contrary to popular belief, negligence is not a hard concept to define or understand, nor is it terribly difficult to prove in the case of a serious accident—if you have a qualified lawyer’s help.

To recover compensation following an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, contact a California personal injury attorney at Bohn & Fletcher, LLP today. Call us at 408-279-4222 or complete the form below. We are proud to offer free, no-obligation consultations to all new clients.