The law defines negligence as careless and neglectful behavior. A charge of gross negligence suggests that the defendant has managed to amplify to a marked degree the type of behavior that the law defines as simple negligence.
The attitude of a defendant that commits an act of gross negligence
The defendant’s attitude copies that of someone that carries out reckless acts.
A defendant that willfully commits some form of misconduct has demonstrated the sort of attitude that is linked to gross negligence.
The defendant’s attitude seems to disregard the norms created by society. In fact, the defendants’ observed actions shock the consciousness of members of society.
Examples of gross negligence
A coach that is intent on winning a scheduled game ignores the complaints coming from a member of the team that got injured during the practice. The injured team member is forced to sit on the side lines in extreme pain. He or she gets deprived of immediate medical attention. As a result, the injury does not receive the proper level of attention from medical personnel.
A facility that allows customers to try bungee jumping also has them sign a waiver. The waiver frees the facility from blame, if an expected danger harms the signee. However, one day a foolish employee fails to report the discovery of a defect in a piece of equipment, and a customer gets injured.
The owner of the facility might try to dispute a personal injury claim, by noting the customer’s signature on the waiver. A judge could point out the degree to which introduction of a defective piece of equipment fall outside of the circle of expected dangers. For that reason, the same judge might elect to charge the facility owner with gross negligence.
What can happen if a plaintiff charges a defendant with gross negligence?
A defendant that has been hit with such a charge might need to pay more than just a fair compensation for the plaintiff. The judge might ask such a defendant to pay punitive damages. Those are like a fine, one placed on the person that has exhibited unacceptable behavior.
Plaintiffs should understand how punitive damages differ from the money that is part of court- awarded compensation. The government cannot tax the awarded compensation, but it can tax the punitive damages. Injury Lawyer in Cambridge often strives to limit the size of the punitive damages that a client’s defendant needs to pay.
The personal injury lawyer might try to win a large compensation for a client. The lawyer’s request for more money might gain support from evidence of the plaintiff’s pain and suffering, after becoming the victim of the defendant’s shocking and exceedingly careless behavior. The lawyer’s action might encourage a lessening of the punitive damages.