Proving Negligence in a Car Accident Claim

One of the most important factors in finding success in a personal injury claim after a car accident is your ability to prove negligence on the part of the other driver or drivers involved in the accident. The law requires drivers to exercise certain standards of “reasonable care” while on the road to avoid harming anyone they encounter.

Here are some specific examples of “reasonable care:”

•    Maintaining appropriate speeds. Drivers are responsible for driving at a prudent speed, taking into account the speed limit, existing traffic, visibility, weather conditions and road conditions. Even if you’re driving at the speed limit, you could be considered negligent if the visibility or weather is bad, or if you’re driving in a school zone.
•    Staying vigilant. Drivers must keep a lookout for other vehicles, various hazards in the road or pedestrians crossing the street. Failure to keep a proper lookout could constitute negligence, especially in areas like construction zones or school crossings.
•    Keeping control of the car. Drivers should be able to stop when needed. If a driver loses control of his or her car for no apparent reason, they could be considered negligent.
•    Safe use of equipment. All equipment in the car should be in working order, including lights, brakes and more. If equipment failures cause an accident, the driver could be considered negligent because it is their responsibility to keep the vehicle in safe condition if they’re going to be driving it.

When drivers violate these types of “reasonable care” standards, they could be considered negligent in the eyes of the law. However, as the plaintiff, you still need to be able to prove that the negligence on the part of the driver directly led to the injuries you suffered. If you have injuries stemming from a pre-existing condition, those injuries would not be included as a factor in your personal injury claim.

For more information about how you can prove negligence on the part of other drivers in your accident, speak with a New Jersey car accident attorney from Gaylord Popp by calling 609-246-0668 or e-mail at