Learn about Personal Injury Law

explains Personal Injury Law

Personal injury law includes a wide variety of topics from substantive law, procedural law, case law, statutory law, administrative law, practical considerations and more.  Shorstein, Lasnetski, & Gihon attempts to break Personal Injury Law down to its essential elements and explain the concepts and issues that you may confront in your personal injury case.  Please click on the links below to learn more about that specific aspect of personal injury law. 


Personal Injury law, which is commonly referred to as "Torts" by the legal community relates to a negligent act committed by one person or entity against another.   The law allows for a person injured by another's negligent act to sue that person or entity and recover damages to make them whole again.  This is, of course, a simplified explanation of the tort system. Below, and through the links below, we will dig a little deeper into Florida's Tort (Personal Injury) laws. 

In any lawsuit alleging personal injury, the plaintiff must prove:

  1. DUTY
The plaintiff must prove all four

Any personal injury case starts with these four questions: 
  1. Did the person who injured you owe a duty of care to the injured person?
  2. Did that person breach the duty of care?
  3. Did that breach cause your injuries?
  4. Do you have damages?
These four questions will be argued and litigated in each personal injury case.  The defendant will try to establish that the answer is no to any one of those four questions.  The plaintiff will try to prove that the answer is yes to each and every one of those questions.  If any one of those four questions is answered with a no by either the judge or the jury, then the plaintiff cannot win.  


Intent is not an element of negligence.  Therefore, it doesn't matter whether the defendant intended to harm you.  You simply have to prove that the defendant was negligent in his or her conduct.  It can by active or passive negligence.  This means that if the person did something that was negligent which led to your injury or failed to do something negligently which led to your injury, they may be liable to compensate you.  An example of passive negligence would be a store who negligently failed to clean up a spill in an area where customers walk and would not be able to see the spill.  


There are varying degrees of negligence that a plaintiff may be required to prove depending on the circumstances.  The most common type is "ordinary negligence." Click on the links below to learn more about each degree of negligence.






There are many statutes sprinkled through the Florida statutes relating to personal injury law.  For example, there may be a tort provision in a criminal statute providing for tort recovery if a person commits or is convicted of a certain crime.  There are also specific tort statutes, like the Wrongful Death statutes.  There are also administrative provisions, regulations, case law, and other legal authority that comprise of the law as it relates to personal injury.  


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