Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Handling Personal Injury Claims in the Seattle Area and Throughout Washington Since 1995

My name is Chris Thayer and I am a personal injury attorney practicing in downtown Seattle. I handle personal injury, medical malpractice and wrongful death claims throughout the greater Seattle area, including Issaquah, Mercer Island and Kirkland.

I am here to help you.

Call for a free consultation (206) 340-2008

Elements of a Seattle Personal Injury Claim

Posted Thursday, May 19, 2016 by Chris Thayer

If you have been injured in a car or other type of accident, it may seem as if things are spiraling out of control. Insurance companies may be contacting you, family and friends are giving you advice, and you are not sure where to turn. During this confusing time, you may be wondering whether you have a valid Seattle personal injury claim. To succeed with a claim, four elements must be proved:

The person who wronged you owed you a certain DUTY of care.

We all have certain duties we owe to other people, even to people we do not know. For example, we as drivers have a duty to navigate roads safely and ensure others are not harmed. In some circumstances, the duty arises out of a special relationship, like the relationship between a doctor and a patient. There are many situations where a duty is created. An experienced attorney can help you determine if you were owed a duty of care by the person who harmed you.

The duty to which you were owed was BREACHED by this person.

A breach of duty means that the person deviated from the behavior expected in the situation. It can manifest itself as driving in an unsafe manner or engaging in some dangerous activity without regard to others. The person must have gone outside what a reasonable person would do to protect or prevent harm to others. This standard varies across each type of injury claim.

The breach of that duty is what CAUSED you to be injured.

The breach of the duty owed to you must have proximately caused your injuries. In other words, the harm to you would not have occurred without the action or inaction of the other person. Also, a reasonable person should have been able to foresee the consequences of his or her behavior. The action or inaction must be related to the injury.

You have suffered DAMAGES as a result of the breach of duty.

The concept of damages all comes down to money. It may manifest itself in the form of lost wages, hospital and other medical bills, cost of repair to property, or any other variation. You must have lost something valuable in order to be successful in your claim.

Every set of circumstances is unique, and there are variations to the requirements of proof you must meet in order to be successful with various types of claims. While it may seem like common sense that someone should have acted in a specific way not to harm you, what is required for actual compensation against that someone is usually more complicated. This does not mean you don’t have a valid Seattle personal injury claim. It simply means that you should speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible if you believe your injury was caused by the negligence of another.