Personal Injury Overview

Personal injury lawsuits are filed by people (or their Houston personal injury attorneys) injured due to the actions or inactions of someone else. Any number of circumstances can lead to a personal injury claim, but some of the most common include slip and fall, automobile accidents, medical malpractice, assault and battery, and product liability. To be legally actionable, those acts of the other party must be intentional or negligent. In some circumstances, a strict liability standard applies.

Intentional acts

To proceed in a lawsuit for damages caused by an intentional act, a plaintiff must show that the defendant acted willfully. To act willfully means to deliberately, intentionally, or wantonly perform an act with actual or constructive knowledge that injury is a likely result, coupled with conscious failure to act to avoid the injury. The defendant’s willful act must be the cause of the plaintiff’s injury. Assault and battery is an example.

Negligent acts

There are four requirements to proving negligence. A plaintiff must show:

  1. the defendant had a duty to conform to a certain standard of conduct to protect the plaintiff from unreasonable risk;
  2. the defendant breached that duty;
  3. the defendant’s breach was the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injury; and
  4. the plaintiff suffered damages.

A slip and fall or an automobile accident may constitute a negligent act.

Strict liability

Under the theory of strict liability, Todd White your Harris County personal injury lawyer will explain that the plaintiff contends that the defendant is liable regardless of fault. To prove a case based on strict liability, three basic elements must be established. A plaintiff must show:

  1. the product was defective;
  2. the defect was the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injury; and
  3. the plaintiff suffered damages.

Product liability cases are typically pursued under a strict liability theory.


The range of damages available include actual economic loss (such as medical expenses and lost wages,) attorney fees, pain and suffering for both physical and emotional injuries, and punitive damages, among others. The damages recoverable depend not only on the facts of your case, but also upon the theory of your case; that is, whether intentional, negligent, or strict liability.

Todd White, a Houston, Texas personal injury attorney, understands the impact a personal injury can have on your life. He is here to provide assistance and counsel so you may recover all you have lost. Mr. White offers a free, initial consultation without obligation. Call (713) 780-1633 today.