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Negligence Per Se

Negligence per se is the legal doctrine that finds someone necessarily negligent if they violate a law related to public safety. Mostly, these typically refer to accidents caused as a result of traffic violations, but negligence per se can also apply to violations of zoning or contracting law. There are four criteria that must be shown to prove a negligence per se claim:

  • The defendant violated a law. Without a violation of a law, negligence per se cannot be proven. However, other forms of negligence may have occurred.
  • The law was a safety law. Simply violating a law does not qualify as negligence per se. A defendant who injures someone while shoplifting is not guilty of negligence per se, although as mentioned before, they may have committed other forms of negligence.
  • The action caused the kind of harm the law was trying to prevent. If a defendant violated a safety law, but caused a type of harm completely unrelated to the type that the law was designed to prevent, negligence per se has not occurred.
  • The plaintiff was a member of the group that the law was trying to protect. This is typically the easiest of all the criteria to prove, as many public safety laws are designed to protect the “general public”, to which almost every person is a member.

Contact Us

This article is not intended to serve as, or as a replacement for, legal advice. If you have been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, contact a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer  at Stepleton Dugan, LLC, at 513-321-7733.





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Stepleton Dugan, LLC
6071 Montgomery Road
CincinnatiOH 45213
(513) 321-7733
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Stepleton Dugan, LLC
6071 Montgomery Road
Cincinnati, OH 45213
(513) 321-7733

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