An RAC survey of British drivers found 78% of drivers thought they were highly skilled at driving, and most thought they were better than other drivers, a result suggesting overconfidence in their abilities. Nearly all drivers who had been in a crash did not believe themselves to be at fault. One survey of drivers reported that they thought the key elements of good driving were:
Similarly, if you are walking in a place where you should not have been walking, even if you were not a trespasser, you may be considered comparatively negligent, and you may not be able to recover. For example, if you are running in a landscaped area in front of your dentist's office instead of a concrete path to kill time before your appointment and trip on a landscaping paver or a root, you may not be able to recover damages for your broken knee.
Traffic citations: drivers who are involved in a collision may receive one or more traffic citations for improper driving conduct such as speeding, failure to obey a traffic control device, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Convictions for traffic violations are usually penalized with fines, and for more severe offenses, the suspension or revocation of driving privileges.
When initiating a tort action, identifying the proper defendants can be difficult. This is because the "tortfeasor" who directly harmed the plaintiff - be it a delivery driver, nurse, grocery store clerk, or other individual - may not have the financial resources to pay a large judgment. An experienced injury attorney can identify and sue additional parties who are liable based on their relationship to the tortfeasor, such as a landlord or employer.
Sometimes, the skills of an experienced personal injury lawyer -- or at least the threat to an insurance company that such a lawyer may present -- are worth the money you must pay that lawyer to represent you. You may need a lawyer because of complex legal rules involved in your particular claim, or because the severity of your injuries might cause your compensation to vary greatly from the norm -- or simply because an insurance company refuses to settle a matter in good faith. The following types of injuries and accidents almost certainly require a lawyer's help.
Property owners have a legal responsibility to maintain their property is reasonably safe condition and to provide adequate warning of any hazard or unsafe condition that cannot be quickly corrected. When a visitor to the property is injured due to an unsafe condition, inadequate security, inadequate maintenance or construction defects, the person who is injured may be entitled to seek compensation from the property owner.
This process of discovery and intermittent court appearances can take months and even years, with the trial date frequently being set back. Eventually, once the discovery process appears to have proceeded as far as it can, the defendant may ask the judge to throw out the case on “summary judgment” because the plaintiff cannot possibly win at trial (these motions lose more often than not).
In the United States, lawyers are regulated by codes of conduct established by state bar associations, which have the power to take disciplinary action against lawyers who violate professional or ethical regulations. States normally require all contingency agreements between lawyers and their clients to be in writing, and may limit the amount that may be charged as a contingency fee to a specific maximum percentage of the recovery.