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What are Oklahoma’s negligence laws?

On Behalf of | Oct 20, 2021 | Personal Injury

Negligence is when one party violates their duties to someone else, and one of the parties suffers injuries in the mix. A plaintiff may file a personal injury lawsuit holding the defendant who allegedly injured them liable for their actions in such an instance.

It’s ultimately the plaintiff’s responsibility who cites negligence as the reason for legal action to detail the defendant’s actions that resulted in their getting hurt. A plaintiff who is successful in proving liability for their injuries may be eligible to request damages from the defendant.

There are some ins and outs about the negligence standard that you’ll want to learn more about before deciding whether your situation warrants legal action.

What to know about the reasonable person standard

Holding someone liable for your injuries generally involves you proving that they failed to carry out their obligations that any other person would have been expected to do. It has to do with them failing to meet their “standard of care” obligations.

Take, for example, a store employee who leaves a ladder open in the toy aisle. There’s a strong potential for a child to come across the ladder when visiting the store’s toy section and to decide to climb it if given an opportunity to do so. If the child then falls off and gets hurt, their parent may hold the store liable for any injuries they suffer.

The same logic may apply in the following situations:

  • If a motorist runs a red light, crashing into someone else
  • A trucker fails to perform a pre-trip inspection or take required rest breaks, causing a wreck as a result
  • A dog owner fails to adhere to leash laws, and their canine attacks someone

No shortage of situations may allow you to hold someone else liable for your injuries.

What is contributory negligence?

Oklahoma’s contributory negligence standard states that the plaintiff’s responsibility in causing the incident can’t be any greater than the defendant’s if they wish to recover damages in their personal injury case. The amount in damages that a plaintiff can claim will be reduced proportionately based on each party’s degree of liability in the incident.

Negligence and liability are two fairly complex legal concepts. You’ll want to ensure that you have a firm grasp of them before taking any legal action.


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