The death of a loved one in Ohio by an act of negligence can be shocking and baffling. You believe that the party involved in the death of your relative should have been more vigilant to prevent whatever caused your loved one to die. In such cases of wrongful death, the party responsible has probably engaged in a breach of duty.
FindLaw defines a duty as whatever a party owed the person who was the victim of wrongful death. A person in the normal course of a profession or an activity will owe a certain degree of care to people who are reasonably expected to come into close proximity. A motorist, for instance, owes nearby pedestrians and fellow drivers a standard of driving that takes their safety into consideration. A reckless driver who disregards such standards may end up causing the death of another person through an auto accident.
When a person breaks their duty to others, it is legally classified as a breach of duty. In a wrongful death suit, your attorney will seek to establish that the other party engaged in a breach of duty by not exercising the care that could have prevented the death of your loved one. In the case of an auto collision, a breach of duty establishes that the motorist should have driven within certain parameters but did not do so.
Be aware that in some cases, a jury might find a party did not engage in a breach of duty. For instance, if a worker on a jobsite accidently causes the death of a person that trespassed on the property, the jury might be more likely to believe the worker did not engage in a breach of duty because a duty was not owed to the trespasser.
Because breaches of duty take many forms, this article should not be taken as providing any legal advice. It is only written to educate Ohio readers on the topic of wrongful death.