Determining Responsibility in Negligence Cases in West Virginia

danger.jpgIf you’ve suffered a personal injury in West Virginia due to the negligence of someone else, you have the right to recover damages for your injuries. If you slip and fall on a wet floor at a grocery store that has not been marked or sectioned off properly, you can sue the store for your medical expenses, lost wages, etc.

However, not every personal injury case is so straightforward. Sometimes, there are additional parties responsible for your injury, or multiple parties who may have contributed in the negligence that caused your injury. In these cases, it takes an experienced personal injury lawyer to figure out all the players involved and who should be named in the claim.

About Responsible Parties
In civil personal injury cases, negligence (the failure to take reasonable actions in a given situation) must be proven in order to recover damages. However, negligence is not limited to one person’s action or inaction. It can extend to small business owners, employers, manufacturers, corporations, partnerships, organizations and even government entities. Here are some ways that additional parties may be held responsible:

Employers can be held liable for the actions of their employees while on duty. For example, if a delivery person for a pizza restaurant hits a pedestrian while delivering a pizza, the employer can also be named in a claim. However, if the delivery person is off-duty (even in uniform), the employer cannot be held responsible.

Government entities can be held responsible for injuries occurring on public property. For example, if a child is hurt at a city playground that has not been properly maintained, the city can be sued. There are strict deadlines in these cases, though, so contact a lawyer immediately after an incident, even if you aren’t sure you have a case.

Property owners are often held liable for injuries suffered on their property, including residential and commercial lots. This includes landowners, farmers and pool operators.