Most personal injury cases result from car accidents, which probably does not come as a surprise at all, considering how many crashes there are every year. For example, in 2012, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration stated that there were over 5.6 million crashes that were reported to the police. That’s taking into account the entire country, but it still shows you how common these accidents are in Colorado.

One of the leading reasons why some of these accidents then result in lawsuits is that drivers may be negligent. This is sort of an umbrella term for a lot of different actions, but it generally means that the drivers did not use reasonable care while behind the wheel, taking their circumstances into account.

For example, a driver may be considered negligent if he or she does not use a turn signal and changes lanes, merging into another vehicle. This is common practice, but it can put that driver at fault since turn signals are supposed to be used to communicate with other drivers and keep people safe.

Specific circumstances must also be considered, and this often means taking the weather into account. For instance, if a driver is going too fast for conditions, maintaining a high rate of speed even in a blizzard, he or she could be considered negligent in an accident. Drivers must be aware of their surroundings and attempt to operate their vehicles safely. When they make no attempt, they show a distinct lack of responsibility.

If you or a loved one has suffered catastrophic injuries in an accident, be sure you know how negligence could play into a potential court case.

Source: FindLaw, “Car Accident Basics,” accessed April. 22, 2015