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What is proximate cause in a personal injury case?

On Behalf of | Oct 20, 2023 | Personal Injury |

Most Indiana residents know that if they suffer an injury that was caused by another party’s negligence or recklessness, they may be able to pursue financial compensation by pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. However, what many people don’t know is that there are multiple elements to a personal injury claim and each element must be proven to get the desired result. One such element is proving proximate cause.

So, what is proximate cause and how does this element impact your case? Well, unfortunately, this term is always somewhat difficult to define because it looks so different in any given case. But, in general, proximate cause refers to the direct link between the negligent or reckless conduct that occurs and the injury that the victim suffers. It is the link of legal liability that attaches to the defendant in the case.

For example, if a pedestrian is crossing the street at an intersection in a crosswalk with the appropriate “walk” sign flashing, and is struck by a car causing injury, then the car striking the pedestrian is what caused the injuries. But, what if the car in question was actually following traffic rules by stopping at the intersection as the traffic light to allow pedestrians to cross, as indicated, but was rear-ended by another vehicle and that is what caused the car to move into the crosswalk and hit the pedestrian? The driver of the other vehicle that rear-ended the first vehicle would likely be at fault, and that driver’s negligence or recklessness was the proximate cause of the pedestrian’s injuries.

Every detail matters

If you have suffered an injury in Indiana, be sure to get your potential personal injury claim reviewed thoroughly. Every detail matters and early action could be crucial to gathering the appropriate evidence to prove your case.

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