Elements of a New Mexico Personal Injury Claim

When you are injured because someone did something wrong, you may feel that they should be responsible for their error. Fortunately, New Mexico Law agrees with you.  Most people know this but once they are hurt it can be difficult to understand what they have to be able to prove within a legal framework.  In New Mexico, we have laws governing cases where someone is hurt because someone else did something wrong. This is what New Mexico Tort Law is all about.

In general, personal injury claims are claims made in tort.  A tort is a claim for damages that arises from the wrongdoing of another. There are 4 basic elements (parts) of a personal injury claim.  You must be able to show each element to be true based on a specific legal standard known as a preponderance of the evidence.

A preponderance of the evidence simply means that you must show it is more likely than not to be true.  More likely than not that you have proven something to be true by the greater weight of the evidence.  It means that something is 51% more likely to be true than the opposite.

The four basic elements of a personal injury claim are as follows:

  1. Duty – You must show that an individual has a duty to you or others who are similarly situated.
  2. Breach of Duty – You must show that the individual with a duty breached his/her duty to you. This is also where the term negligence is used.
  3. Causation – You must show that this breach of duty caused the harm you suffered.
  4. Damages – You must show what damages or harm resulted from the breach of duty.

Once you have shown each of these elements, by a preponderance of the evidence, a jury or judge will award you damages based on your damages.  In the next few blogs we will discuss this legal framework as it applies to standard personal injury cases like car accidents, drunk driving crashes, slip and falls, and premises liability claims.  We will discuss each element in turn and some of the issues common to each element.

If you have personal injuries as the result of someone’s negligence or carelessness, you should talk to the personal injury attorneys at Whitener Law Firm.  Our attorneys have more than a 100 years of combined legal experience.  Contact Whitener Law Firm ONLINE or at (505) 883-RUSS for a FREE CONSULTATION.  Remember there is NO ATTORNEY FEE unless you settle or win your case. 

After a Crash, Don’t Accept Quick Cash… call Whitener Law Firm, P.A.