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Intervening Acts

In a negligence action, for the defendant to be held liable the plaintiff must prove the defendant's negligence was the substantial cause of the plaintiff’s injuries. Occasionally the acts of third parties will intervene between the defendant’s actions and plaintiff’s injury, and the questions becomes, is the intervening act a foreseeable result of the circumstance the defendant established. Whether the defendant will be held liable revolves around the foreseeability of the events. If it is determined that the third parties actions are so independent and remote from the defendant’s actions that it supersedes or severs the defendant’s liability. Alternatively if it found that the third party’s action is within the scope of the original, that is the defendant’s initial negligence, then the defendant can still be found liable.

The foreseeability of certain outcomes are generally decided by a jury, so it is a good idea to obtain an attorney for complex liability cases.

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