Why Negligence, Recklessness, And Malice Matter In Injury Cases

26 March 2019
 Categories: , Blog

Moving forward with a personal injury claim can feel at once like a simple process and a difficult one. On one hand, it seems like it should be easy to say you were hurt because of someone else's actions -- on the other hand, it can seem like a long process of working with claims adjusters, personal injury lawyers, and even courts. Learning about the basics of the system can make it a bit easier to understand.

These are the three reasons a person has cause for pursuing an injury claim in the first place: prior to an injury happening, someone had to have neglected their duty to prevent others from getting hurt, acted so dangerously that no reasonable person would consider it safe, or behaved with obvious malice.


A common example of negligence that personal injury attorneys may often cite is failing to clean up a spill in a supermarket aisle. The store and its employees have a responsibility to keep the supermarket safe for customers. If a spill sat for any length of time once an employee or a manager was notified, the store may be responsible for someone slipping on it because it is negligent to leave a wet spot when it could be mopped up.

The level of negligence would be amplified if the wet area were caused by something that should have been rectified days, weeks, or months ago. This would be the case, for example, if a freezer was causing condensation on the floor in the area where customers regularly walk.


The actions of a person or an organization are seen as reckless when they don't put thought into something that a normal person would. Let's say you were in a mall and an employee of a business ran into you while chasing a shoplifter. This might be seen as reckless because there's a point where the personal safety of customers becomes more important than detaining someone for committing a misdemeanor.


This is when someone took an action and they meant for the other party to be harmed. For example, civil complaints filed in connection to criminal assault cases frequently include claims of damages for injuries suffered. In these instances, the injuries were the point of the action. Regardless of the motivations, maliciously attacking someone is a violation of the duty members of society have to not harm others through their actions.