Before a defendant can be held liable for the injuries they caused to another person, the injured party must prove their case against the defendant. In cases that alleged that the defendant was negligent, this requires the plaintiff to prove four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. A plaintiff’s failure to prove any one of these elements will be fatal to the plaintiff’s case.
The element of duty is often a simple one to establish, and it requires a plaintiff to prove that the defendant owed them some duty of care. In many cases, this issue is conceded by the defense. However, that will not always be the case, especially in premises liability cases.
Breach is often where much of the litigation takes place in personal injury cases. Essentially, the breach element requires a judge to determine if the defendant violated the duty of care owed to the plaintiff. One aspect of the breach element is foreseeability. In other words, were the plaintiff’s injuries a foreseeable result of the defendant’s conduct?