There are four things that must be proven when pursuing compensation for injuries caused by someone else’s negligence, including duty of care, breach of duty of care, causation and the existence of damages.
Causation is one of the most difficult things to prove in a personal injury claim. It is often considered the central issue in a personal injury claim.
Our injury attorneys in Fort Worth understand the challenges of proving causation when pursuing compensation for your damages. We are prepared to help you through the complex process, all at no upfront cost to you.
What is Causation?
Causation is something that produces an effect or result. There are two elements of causation:
- Actual Cause – Your lawyer must prove that but for the negligent actions of another person, the accident would not have occurred. Another way of saying it is that you would not have been injured but for the other party’s negligence.
- Proximate Cause – Your attorney must establish the injuries you suffered were foreseeable by the at-fault party, as a proximate cause of his or her actions.
Proving causation can be complex and the insurance company is likely to claim the accident would have occurred regardless of their insured’s actions, or that you have a preexisting condition that is causing your symptoms. Therefore, you should strongly consider hiring a knowledgeable attorney to help build a case to prove your injuries were caused by another person’s negligence.
What Can Be Used as Evidence to Prove Causation?
There are several pieces of evidence that may be used to prove causation in your injury case:
- Police report
- Eyewitness statements
- Video footage of the accident
- Statements from accident reconstruction experts
The evidence your lawyer needs will depend on the specifics of your case. Sometimes the police report and some pictures from the scene are all that is necessary. Other times, video footage and testimony from expert witnesses may be needed to back up other evidence.
Evidence to prove your injuries may include:
- Medical reports
- X-rays, MRIs, CT Scans
- Treating doctors’ statements
Preexisting Conditions and Causation
One common tactic used by insurance companies to minimize claims is saying your injuries were caused by a preexisting condition. Insurers may make these claims when:
- They have you examined by a doctor of their choosing
- You sign a blanket medical release form, and they snoop through your entire medical history
Fortunately, a preexisting condition does not bar you from recovering compensation. The eggshell skull doctrine says defendants must take the victim as they find him or her. You cannot be barred from recovering compensation just because you may have been more likely to get injured because of a preexisting condition.
Comparative Negligence and Causation
Just as the insurance company may try to devalue your claim by saying your preexisting conditions contributed to your damages, they may also claim you bear partial fault to the accident.
Fortunately, Texas has a modified comparative negligence rule that allows injury victims who are partially at fault for an accident to still recover compensation. However, the compensation may be reduced by the percentage he or she is found at fault for an accident. For example, if your claim is worth $100,000 but you were found to be 10 percent at fault, you would only be eligible to recover $90,000.
Have Questions About Proving Causation? Call Us Today
The legal theory of causation may be more complex in some accident cases than others. Fortunately, our attorneys have over 50 years of combined legal experience.
Our attorneys have the resources and legal knowledge to build a strong case to help you pursue maximum compensation for your injuries. We offer a free consultation to discuss your claim, and we do not charge you any attorney fees unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.