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What are the Differences Between Negligent and Intentional Personal Injury Claims? January 14, 2020

Norwich, New London
What are the Differences Between Negligent and Intentional Personal Injury Claims?, Norwich, Connecticut

Any personal injury claim requires showing fault, but the kind of claim you file will depend on the circumstances of the incident. In some cases, another party may be at fault due to their negligent actions, or they may be at fault due to intentionally causing harm. To learn more about the differences between negligent and intentional personal injury claims, consider the guide below.

What are Negligent Personal Injury Claims?

In a negligent personal injury claim, the party found responsible for the injury did not intend to cause it. For this type of claim, an attorney will have to establish the four factors described below.

Duty of Care

It must be shown that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff. This means that they had a responsibility for that person’s safety under certain circumstances. 

Breach of the Duty of Care

Personal InjuryBreaching the duty of care involves acting negligently, increasing the likelihood of an accident. For example, speeding on a public road or failing to mop up a spill in a store are considered breaches of the duty of care.


The attorney must also prove that when the defendant breached that duty of care, the accident resulted and directly caused the plaintiff’s injuries. It’s essential to make this connection, because the defendant is only responsible for the damages that were directly caused by their negligence. 


Finally, it must be shown that the plaintiff suffered damages that caused a financial burden. Some damages include property damages to the vehicle, treatment for injuries caused in the accident, and loss of wages due to being unable to return to work.

What Constitutes an Intentional Personal Injury Claim? 

To file an intentional personal injury claim, an attorney must prove that a defendant wished to cause harm to the plaintiff. Since the defendant acted with the intention of causing the damages, they will be held solely accountable for those damages. The plaintiff won’t be expected to share the fault for acts purposely committed by the defendant.

The damages awarded in intentional personal injury cases tend to be greater than those awarded in negligent cases. While both negligent and intentional acts allow a plaintiff to recover damages for property damage, medical care costs, and lost wages, an intentional act also allows the plaintiff to recover punitive damages. If the intent to cause harm can be proven, punitive damages are also awarded. While other damages are intended to help the plaintiff recover from the incident, punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant. 



If you’ve been injured as the result of an accident or a deliberate act, you may be able to seek compensation for your damages through a personal injury claim. The Law Office Of T J Morelli-Wolfe PC is located in Norwich, CT, and has more than two decades of experience in handling injury claims. They’re dedicated to serving every client with prompt, reliable, and skilled service. To find out how they can help you, schedule an initial consultation by calling (860) 859-9899, or learn more on their website.

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