A negligence lawyer in a building lobby communicating with a client over a tablet.The city of Hartford embodies Connecticut in every sense of the word. It sports a delicious food scene, generally safe communities, diverse cultural attractions, and a love for outdoor recreation.

Hartford is also extremely accessible. As the capital of a state nestled right between Boston, New York, and Rhode Island, Hartford is no stranger to crowds of hundreds of thousands, all the way up to millions of people.

For context, Hartford’s hustle and bustle make it a particularly active city with over 120,000 locals and over 64 million tourists (generating $15.4 billion in revenue) each year. However, an unfortunate side effect of this activity is the increased risk of accidents and injuries.

This danger is especially prevalent on Hartford’s roads and streets, which have consistently seen close to 20 fatal accidents each year, even accounting for the greatly reduced traffic during the recent COVID-19 pandemic. When these accidents are caused by the actions or inactions of people who should have been more responsible, victims may have a case of negligence on their hands.

When you need a representative to help you get through the complexities of negligence law, you need someone with both legal expertise and commitment to securing justice. To that end, Bert McDowell Injury Law understands the challenges accident victims face when seeking compensation.

Bert McDowell Injury Law aims to be a beacon of support for our clients, providing both counsel and advocacy for the rights of accident victims. Our team of seasoned lawyers boasts an impressive track record, having recovered tens of millions of dollars since the firm was founded.

The Benefits of Working With a Hartford Negligence Attorney

The legal process of making a claim is often complex and emotionally taxing, especially when most Americans aren’t versed in law. In fact, not every attorney is even trained to handle insurance claims; it can take several years of specialization in insurance law as a niche before one can be called an expert.

Even then, success is never guaranteed.

However, partnering with Bert McDowell Injury Law’s Hartford negligence lawyers can offer advantages you wouldn’t have when pursuing compensations solo (or, in our humble opinion, with other law firms).

  • Legal Mastery: At Bert McDowell Injury Law, we bring extensive expertise in Hartford negligence law. We’ve handled an assortment of diverse injury cases ranging from car accidents to slip-and-falls to commercial injury and medical malpractice.
  • Free Case Assessment: We want to earn our keep at Bert McDowell Injury Law, and to do so, we offer free case evaluations with no obligation to work together. We only get paid if we win, so there is zero risk in choosing us.
  • Proven Negotiation Skills: We boast a history of having secured six and seven-figure sums for our clients, even in situations where they would have otherwise gotten a value three times less (or even where they would have gotten nothing at all)!
  • Complete Legal Representation: When you work with us, we will be by your side at the negotiating table and, if necessary, in court. If you are incapable of being present due to your injury or busy recovery schedule, we can even attend important meetings in your stead.
  • Comprehensive Support: Our three pillars of client communication, attention, and success mean we are here for you even after a settlement has been reached. We make it a point to offer not just legal guidance but also emotional support to help you throughout the legal journey.

We at Bert McDowell Injury Law are dedicated professionals with a vested interest in advocating for your rights. Take advantage of our services today and allow our Hartford negligence attorneys to pursue justice and compensation on your behalf.

What Is Negligence and Why Does It Affect Me?

Negligence is defined as the “failure to exercise the care toward others which a reasonable or prudent person would do in the circumstances, or taking action which such a reasonable person would not.”

Negligence is one of the most – if not the most – important concepts in personal injury cases. Whether an injury is caused by car accidents, medical malpractice, slip-and-falls, or any other unfortunate event, determining whether there has been negligence – and, if so, who has been negligent – is often what allows victims to make a claim for compensation.

The reason for this is that, for the most part, you cannot make personal injury claims (and property damage disputes) against another person or party if no one is responsible for your damage. Note, however, that because negligence is accidental in nature, it does not apply in cases involving intentional acts of harm.

Say, for example, you suffered whiplash after having to brake suddenly to avoid a collision with a pedestrian because you were momentarily distracted by a conversation you were having with a passenger. In this case, you are responsible for your own injury and cannot make a claim.

On the other hand, if you had to hit the brake to avoid a collision because of a particularly hard-to-see pothole, then whoever was supposed to repair that pothole might be considered at fault for your injury. In this case, the person or body might be considered negligent in their duty to maintain the road.

Identifying Negligence

That brings us to how we identify whether negligence has occurred. Typically, in order to prove negligence, a plaintiff has to prove three things: that there was a duty of care, that there was a breach of this duty through action or inaction, and that said action or inaction caused damages to the plaintiff.

  • Duty of Care: This is the idea that the defendant has a duty to the plaintiff or to the public itself that necessitates a reasonable degree of care. So, for example, a doctor has to keep patients alive, a construction worker has to prevent bystanders from getting hurt, and a restaurant’s floor staff should probably keep the floor dry for safety reasons.
  • Breach of Duty: This is the concept that the defendant’s action or inaction, as the case may be, was not something that any other prudent person of the same skill set in their position would have done. A traffic enforcement officer, for instance, would breach their duty if they, in the middle of an intersection, failed to properly direct traffic because they couldn’t wait for their next break before checking their phone they shouldn’t have had on them in the first place.
  • Damages and Causation of Damages: Let’s say that the aforementioned traffic enforcer’s breach of duty led to a T-bone between two family sedans. Any injury that the people in either vehicle sustained, as well as any property damage and non-economic damage, can be held against the negligent officer.

This framework of approaching negligence allows the law to hold at-fault individuals accountable for actions. More importantly, it holds people to certain standards of responsibility.

It’s a simple enough system to understand and is intended to facilitate seamless compensation after a tragedy. That said, it also happens to be a nuanced foundation involving legal interpretations and considerations for factors unique per case.

Thorough assessments can, therefore, be extremely complex depending on the circumstances of each situation.

How Does Negligence Affect My Case?

Negligence, in Connecticut personal injury cases, primarily comes into play through the state’s modified comparative negligence system. This is a ruling that allows more than one party to share in fault for the accident and/or injuries.

Under modified comparative negligence, plaintiffs are only allowed to recover damages from defendants if they are less than the specified bar. In Connecticut, that bar is set to 51%, which means any party involved in the accident can get compensation if they are up to 50% at fault,

However, there is a caveat to this: any damages recovered by a plaintiff are reduced by their degree of fault. So, if a person is determined to be 40% at fault for an accident occurring, they are only going to be entitled to 60% of the total value of their claim.

This also means that if two parties share equal blame, they are each entitled to half the value of any claim they make. This implies that recovering directly from each other might not be possible because damages offset their responsibilities, though the possibility of recovering from each other’s (or their own) insurance policies still exists.

Choose Bert McDowell for Your Hartford Negligence Law Firm

Don’t settle for less when you need an ally for your negligence injury claim. Bert McDowell Injury Law stands ready as more than just representatives; we are seasoned veterans looking to fight for your well-being.

Attorney Bert McDowell is a professional Hartford personal injury lawyer with a penchant for hard work and justice, thanks to his mother, a retired NYC police officer. He was selected to The National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40 in 2018 and has been a Super Lawyer Rising Star for four years in a row.

It’s time to Bring On Bert! Choose us as your Hartford negligence law firm and get the compensation you need and deserve for your losses.

Call us today at (203) 633-7449.