How do I figure out who is at fault?
In most cases, in order to collect on an injury claim in Virginia, you must prove the person who caused the injury was “negligent.” This means a failure to exercise ordinary care. You must prove:
The person who caused your injury owed you a legal duty (such as to obey a red traffic light/signal). The other person broke or breached that duty (such as running a red traffic light/signal) and you suffered damages or injuries as a result of the other person’s actions. Now, if you were also careless, and that was a factor in the accident causing your damages or injuries, then you may not be able to recover damages under the law of contributory negligence. (In plain language, this means you didn’t exercise ordinary care for your own safety and when combined with the other person’s negligence, you were injured.)
If more one than person is negligent towards you, then each is responsible for the total amount of your injuries or damages under the principle of joint and several liability.
If you’re injured using a consumer product, then the manufacturer of the product may be responsible under “products liability” law. In such a case, you must prove:
The product was defective or there was a failure to warn of a known danger associated with the product, which made it unreasonably dangerous. Also, you must show that the defect or lack of warnings caused your injury and you suffered injuries or damages.