Nashville, TN – Because driving is such a dangerous activity and many accidents happen every year in Tennessee, there are some basic legal principles that will help drivers understand what they should do after a collision. The doctrine of negligence is one of the most important concepts for all civil lawsuits, and it is a factor in almost every car accident case

The four elements of negligence

As a general rule, negligence has similar elements in every state. These include a relevant duty of care on the roads, a breach of that duty, causation of a collision, and damages. All drivers must obey traffic laws and operate their vehicles carefully on the roads, which forms the basis for a duty of care. A breach occurs when a driver makes a mistake or breaks the law. Causation is usually proven by the fact that the accident happened. The damages are the specific losses caused by the collision such as property damage, medical and hospital bills, and missed time from work. The lawyer for an accident victim will be especially concerned with damages, as they advocate on a victim’s behalf to argue for the largest amount of damages that were likely caused by the incident. 

Dividing fault under Tennessee law

In some accidents, it is clear that one driver is totally at fault and the other is a victim. However, because multiple cars are usually involved and the issue is often not clear, negligence laws have adapted to divide fault between the parties involved in some states. 

Tennessee’s negligence laws are slightly more complex than many other states because fault can be divided among the drivers involved, but there are limitations to this process. A driver can collect from the others involved in the accident as long as they are only fifty percent at fault or less. This is done to prevent drivers who essentially caused an accident from getting paid for their own mistakes.  

A lawyer in the state can explain these concepts more thoroughly, and give specific advice about how an accident lawsuit may resolve. The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance has also provided information about motor vehicle laws that go over many of these concepts on their website. The legislature regularly updates these rules and laws based on changes in technology and other factors that may affect drivers. 

Getting legal advice is the best option

Individuals who have experienced an injury or the death of a family member from a motor vehicle accident in the state of Tennessee should get advice from a local attorney. The Law Office of George R. Fusner has been litigating local cases since 1977, and new clients are able to schedule a free case evaluation. 

Firm contact info:

The Law Office of George R. Fusner

7104 Peach Court, Brentwood TN 37027