Strict liability is a critical element in many personal injury cases. It applies to the ways in which negligence influences the outcome of a case and the compensation that’s granted to plaintiffs.
Personal injury cases consist of one party seeking compensation for injuries and other losses. In cases involving strict liability, whether the defendant acted negligently or not is irrelevant.
Understanding strict liability and its role in your legal claim helps you develop the right strategy to get the compensation you need.
Strict Liability in Georgia
Most personal injury claims require plaintiffs to demonstrate how a defendant’s negligence resulted in the losses they sustained.
But in some cases, a defendant may be found liable due to their position instead of any actions they took or failed to take.
Strict liability is a legal standard in which one party is deemed responsible for losses resulting from an incident that caused harm to another person. It’s not dependent on the presence of fault or the intent to harm the other party.
Common examples include the liability involved in manufacturing, high-risk activities, and animal ownership. Statutory rape is one example where strict liability is applied in a criminal case.
Strict Liability in Personal Injury
If strict liability can be applied in your personal injury case, you and your attorney can implement a legal strategy that holds a defendant liable without having to demonstrate intent.
In personal injury claims, strict liability removes any questions related to the intent, fault, or negligence of the defendant. Plaintiffs must only demonstrate that the defendant’s action or inaction resulted in the injury and other losses.
Manufacturers are liable for any injuries caused by defective products. The design and production processes are meant to ensure that products are safe. By distributing their products to the general public, the manufacturer indicates that their product is safe.
When an injury or other loss occurs, then the manufacturer, distributors, and other related parties may be responsible for those losses.
As a result, the plaintiff must only prove that the product was, in fact, unreasonably defective when it was released by the manufacturer for distribution.
Protecting Your Legal Rights in a Personal Injury Claim
The right legal strategy will determine the compensation you receive. But defendants may argue against your claim even in cases where strict liability applies.
If a defective product resulted in some injury or other damages, the defendant may claim that the plaintiff failed to use the product accordingly.
Courts won’t provide compensation to plaintiffs who seek compensation for injuries that resulted from their misuse of a product.
A case involving strict liability may not require the same legal strategy as other personal injury claims, and it doesn’t always result in a judgment that favors the plaintiff.
Most negligence claims require the plaintiff to present evidence related to fault. Strict liability cases don’t require this, making the process quicker in most cases.
But contributory negligence or assumption of risk may be presented by the defendant in order to argue against your claim. Contributory negligence holds that the plaintiff may have contributed in some part to their losses.
This can cause your compensation to be reduced according to your share of liability. The defendant may argue that you are not entitled to receive the full compensation that you and your attorney are requesting.
Strict liability cases may be easier for the plaintiff in some ways, but you need to prepare for the possible arguments that a defendant might make.
Working with an experienced legal professional who understands strict liability is the best way to get the compensation you deserve.
Your personal injury attorney can evaluate the evidence and circumstances of your case and develop the legal strategies that are more likely to result in a positive outcome for you.