The Four Different Types of Negligence

The Four Different Types of Negligence

Negligence is usually defined as a failure to provide reasonable care, resulting in harm or damage to another person. While the application of negligence may seem relatively straightforward, there is actually much more to this concept. For starters, negligence can be broken down into four types, including gross, contributory, vicarious, and comparative negligence.

Gross Negligence

Gross negligence is defined as a lack of care that demonstrates a reckless disregard for the lives and safety of others. This lack of care is also so great that it usually appears to be a conscious violation of another person’s rights.

Consequently, gross negligence is considered to be more harmful than ordinary negligence because it implies a thoughtless disregard for a person’s consequences and the failure to use even slight care to avoid harming the property of another or their life. Due to this standard, when a person is found guilty of gross negligence, they may be required to pay significantly higher financial damages.

Comparative Negligence

Comparative negligence is a tort principle used by the courts to reduce the amount of financial damages a plaintiff can obtain in a negligence-based claim based on the degree of negligence each person contributed to the incident.

Comparative negligence is most commonly used to assign blame in car accidents. For instance, if two drivers were involved in a crash, the court may assign blame to the drivers based on a percentage basis. Depending on their percentage, the plaintiff will only recover a portion of financial damages rather than the full amount.

Contributory Negligence

Contributory negligence is a common law tort rule which prevents plaintiffs from recovering for another person’s negligence if they were also negligent in causing the harm. There are also hybrid contributory negligence systems that allow plaintiffs to recover financial damages as long as they are not found to be more than 50% at fault for the injuries and damages that resulted.

In many jurisdictions, contributory negligence has been replaced with the doctrine of comparative negligence. Arizona, for instance, follows the doctrine of comparative negligence, which means that an injured party is allowed to recover financial compensation for their injuries, even if they were 99% at fault for the accident.

Vicarious Negligence

Vicarious negligence, or vicarious liability, is a type of negligence that allows another person or company to be held responsible for the conduct of another. For instance, an employer may be responsible for the actionable conduct of their employees. 

Contact Territorial Law, LLC, Today To Find Out Your Legal Options Following a Yuma Personal Injury Accident

If you or a loved one have been harmed in a Yuma accident due to another person’s negligent actions, you may be entitled to compensation for the harm and losses you suffered, even if you were partially responsible for the incident. To find out what legal options you can pursue after these accidents or to learn more about the concept of negligence, contact Territorial Law, LLC today or call us at 928-543-5092 to schedule a free case consultation with our legal team.