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Fairbanks, Alaska

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Ward Merdes
Ward Merdes
Attorney • (866) 452-3741

Accident or Negligence?

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Negligence is stupidity. As a juror, just ask yourself if the defendant could have avoided this situation by being more careful. If your answer is “Yes” – then hold the defendant Negligent and give the injured person enough money to get back on their horse. It’s that simple. If you break it – you buy it.

Jurors are sometimes confused between “Accidents” and “Negligence.” After conducting dozens of focus groups on automobile wrecks, accidents and injury cases, it seems that jurors usually get hung up on whether “Negligence” is involved. Let me help you out by defining terms…

Negligence is being stupid.

Really, it’s that simple. When a defendant is sued for hurting somebody, the first thing you have to do as a juror is determine whether the defendant was acting like an idiot. If the defendant was being stupid when he/she hurt somebody, the defendant was “Negligent” and has to write a check.

Remember, “Negligence” doesn’t mean that the defendant is going to jail. Absolutely not. Instead, if a civil defendant (somebody being sued for money) is found to be “Negligent” – then he/she has to write a check to the person he/she injured. Your job as a juror is to be sure that the defendant is 100% accountable for being stupid.

So, what do you do if the defendant didn’t intend to hurt this person? For example, the defendant stands up and says: “Well yes, I was driving 70 MPH in a 55 MPH zone and hit this other driver from behind because I couldn’t stop in time.” What do you do as jurors?

The answer is simple: “Find the defendant negligent … and figure out how much damage he/she caused.” Hold the defendant 100% accountable for his/her stupidity. Otherwise, if you find the defendant should pay no money to help his/her victim – what is the defendant’s incentive to slow down? What is stopping the defendant from doing 80 MPH on his way home from court? How can you be sure that your spouse, children, parents won’t get killed by this idiot the next time he/she decides to drive too fast? The answer is “Find The Defendant Negligent.”

It’s that simple.

Do your job as a juror. Make a fair evaluation. If you want to make your own town safer, don’t fall for the insurance company BS. Just make idiots accountable for doing stupid things – and it will all work out in the end.

That’s why people buy insurance – to help those they injure.