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What Are the Four Types of Negligence?

An irresponsible texting driver is about to run over a pedestrian at an intersection which shows how dangerous texting and driving is. Stop the text and stop the wrecks.

In legal terms, Negligence is when someone that is responsible for another person’s care, acts in a way that can or has resulted in harm. In medical situations, daycare, or home care, negligence is a top concern, as those receiving care are often unable to protect themselves, making them more susceptible to negligence.

What you might not know, is that there are four types of negligence. Gross, contributory, comparative, and vicarious.

What is Negligence?

Before we dive into the four types of negligence, let’s take a closer look at what negligence is. When duty of care is not executed correctly, this is considered negligence, and the victim may be entitled to take legal action.

In order to pursue legal action, the victim must be able to prove:

  • The defendant owed them duty of care
  • The defendant did not provide that duty of care
  • The lack of care was the legal cause of the victim’s injuries
  • The victim suffered an injury or some sort of damage

What are the four types of negligence?

Gross Negligence

Gross Negligence is the most serious form of negligence and is the term most often used in medical malpractice cases. These cases are highlighted by reckless behavior that a reasonable person would not commit.

An example could be a home care nurse not providing a patient with food or water for several days.

Contributory Negligence

Contributory negligence is when a person isn’t 100% at fault for a crime, but did contribute in some way. An example is someone texting and driving that gets into an accident with another driving that made an illegal turn.

Comparative Negligence

Comparative negligence is when a party is partially responsible for the harm they’ve experienced. In these situations, even being 1% responsible may make the person unable to receive compensation. Maryland is one of only four states where contributory negligence is practiced.

An example could be someone injuring themselves on a wet floor, even though there was a wet floor sign present. In this scenario, the injured person is usually deemed responsible for knowing their surroundings and isn’t due any damages.

Vicarious Negligence

Vicarious Negligence is when someone is indirectly responsible. The most common example is a dog bite. Though the person themselves did not injure someone, their dog did, and thus they are responsible to cover any injuries caused by their dog.

Facing a Personal Injury Case Where Negligence Took Place? We Can Help

If you’ve been the victim of negligence, you may be in need of legal assistance. Contact the team at Albers & Associates. We’re here to help you get the justice you deserve.

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