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What Is The “Reasonable Person” Standard In Negligence Cases?

What is the “Reasonable Standard”

All members of society are responsible for acting as a “reasonable person” and avoiding actions that are at risk of harming others. For example, it’s reasonable for a driver to obey traffic laws, including following the speed limit. The “reasonable person” is not an actual person. According to Find Law, “a person must act with the care, prudence, and good judgment of a reasonable person so as not to cause injury to others. Acting carelessly or recklessly will be considered a tort if an injury to another is caused. Such a “person” is ideal, focusing on how a typical person with ordinary prudence would act in certain circumstances. The test as to whether a person has acted as a reasonable person is an objective one. It doesn’t take into account the specific abilities of a defendant. So even a person who has low intelligence or is chronically careless is held to the same standard as a more careful person or a person of higher intelligence.”

Negligent Cases

Lawyers must prove that reasonably foreseeable risk is an essential component of liability in determining if negligence occurred. Judges have to be fair and use their instinctive responses to the facts of a case. However, outside influences may apply a certain degree of conscious or unconscious subjectivity. Sometimes, a judge’s preconceived notions can affect the case’s outcome. The reasonable person standard is not a standard that requires perfection or removal of every possible danger – it is a standard that involves reasonableness. It is the balance between the existing laws and the issues in everyday life. Everyone is held up to the reasonable person standard, including the victim.

Negligence and Reasonable Person: Cases with Children

A child does not act the same way as adults. Instead, courts hold children to a modified standard. Under this standard, a child’s actions are compared with the conduct of other children of the same age, experience, and intelligence. However, courts in some jurisdictions apply the adult standard of care to children who engage in certain adult activities, such as driving a car.

We are here to help

If you or a loved one has been injured through negligence, know your rights! Contact professional attorneys to represent you for more information about the “Reasonable Person” standard in negligence cases. At Edelman, Krasin, & Jaye, PLLC, we offer more than 60 years of combined experience. We have convenient office locations in Long Island, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, and we know how to approach these cases to get the results you need. Our firm is committed to bringing the compensation you deserve. Contact our New York offices by phone at 800-469-7429 to schedule an appointment. You can also contact us using our online contact form and by using our Live Chat application on our website.