When operating machinery at any kind, you trust that you were properly trained to handle such equipment and that the equipment itself has been properly inspected and maintained for safety. Sadly, this is not always the case, and innocent workers are left vulnerable to suffering serious injury.
If you or a loved one has suffered damages as a result of malfunctioning work equipment, speak with a professional injury attorney about your case. A Wakefield faulty machinery lawyer could advise you about how to move forward with your claim and provide you with legal guidance through the proceedings.
Establishing the Defendant’s Negligence in Wakefield Faulty Machinery Cases
Negligence occurs when a person or entity does not exert reasonable care to do something, and thereby causes injury or damage to another party. In the case of faulty machinery, there are numerous parties who could be found negligent for a victim’s injuries. Examples may include the retailer or manufacturer that rents or sells the equipment. Both of these parties have an obligation to use reasonable care to provide the injured party with equipment that was in good-working order and properly maintained.
The elements required to establish negligence in an injury case include the following:
- There was a duty to act with reasonable care
- The inaction or action on the part of the defendant failed to meet the standard of care that a reasonable person would meet in similar circumstances, known as the breach of duty
- The plaintiff suffered a loss or injury which could have been foreseen by a reasonable defendant
- The plaintiff’s loss or injury stemmed from the defendant’s breach of a reasonable standard of care, referred to as causation
If the accident occurred at work, an individual could be eligible to pursue a third-party liability claim. This would require the plaintiff to establish that the manufacturer of the equipment was negligent in its design, production, or marketing, thereby causing the individual’s injuries and losses. A Wakefield faulty machinery lawyer could provide valuable assistance to help an injured party build a strong claim for damages.
The Impact of the Comparative Negligence Doctrine
Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 231§85 outlines the State’s comparative negligence doctrine. A plaintiff in a faulty machinery case could be barred from recovering damages if they are more responsible than the defendant for the accident that caused their injuries.
According to the comparative negligence doctrine, a plaintiff could still recover damages even if they are partially to blame for their injuries, so long as they are less than 51 percent responsible. Assuming the plaintiff was found to be partly responsible for the accident, the number of damages they could recover would be diminished proportionate to their percentage of shared fault. For example, if the plaintiff was determined to bear 45 percent of the responsibility for their accident, they could still recover 55 percent of their total damage award.
In Massachusetts, there is no affirmative defense of comparative negligence for product liability claims based on breach of warranty. Also, even when comparative negligence applies, comparative negligence does not apply to loss of consortium claims by the injured worker’s spouse or dependent children.
Seeking Damages in a Wakefield Faulty Machinery Case
It is critical that the injured party speak with a faulty machinery attorney in Wakefield in the aftermath of an incident. A plaintiff could be entitled not only to worker’s compensation damages (if the injury occurred while the individual was on the job), but also to damages from a third-party personal injury lawsuit.
A third-party personal injury lawsuit is one brought against a party for injuries incurred by the plaintiff. While worker’s compensation coverage could reimburse the injured party for medical costs and a portion of their lost wages, these benefits would not cover damages for losses such as pain and suffering and future lost income. However, such damages could be sought in a third-party personal injury lawsuit.
Contact a Wakefield Faulty Machinery Attorney Right Away
Injuries stemming from a faulty machinery incident could take months or years to fully heal, leaving the individual strapped with medical bills, lost income, pain, and even emotional struggles. A skilled Wakefield faulty machinery lawyer could help you recover financially and physically by pursuing just compensation for your losses. Call today to schedule a case review and learn more about your legal rights to pursue a claim.