Will the law just let you sit back and let someone get beaten to death? You may have wanted to ask your lawyer if you are legally obligated to help someone in trouble. You may have asked your lawyer, if you can get sued for failing to stop a fight from breaking out while walking in the park. Your lawyer probably looked at you funny and told you that you can’t get sued for this. The only exception if you are the person’s parent and the person is a minor. Then you have a legal obligation to protect the kid. Your personal injury lawyer will explain this aspect of personal injury law in the following way:
There is no such thing as a broad duty to help
According to personal injury law, you do have a duty to act to a certain degree of care when driving. But, your personal injury lawyer in Mountain View will inform you that this does not apply to arbitrary situations. In other words, you are not obligated to help out a personal stranger. Thus, if you see a person who has suffered from a slip and fall accident in the store, you are not legally obligated to help him or her. The only exception is if you were a store employee who mopped the floor and then failed to dry it properly. Personal injury law also requires you to call for medical attention and the police if you see a car accident while driving.
Another exception is a special relation – this can trigger a duty to help
There are many exceptions to the general broad duty to help rule. These are known as special relationships. There are many different types of special relationships:
● Parents and their biological or legal kids
● Schools and students
● Trains, buses, planes are known as common carriers
● Employers and their employees
● Social hosts and their guests
If your kid falls off of a ladder, the special relationship rule requires you to help him or her. However, you don’t have to do anything if your kid’s friend falls off of a ladder (though your kid may lose a friend). Teachers must help their students. For example, if a teacher thinks his student is being abused by his or her parents, the teacher must help the student immediately.
Bus drivers must help passengers who slip and fall or get injured in other ways either while riding or while boarding the bus. This is because of the special relationship rule. Note that this rule only applies to people who are riding the bus. The driver has no duty to help a passerby on the street who slips and falls.
If you throw a party and one of your guests gets food poisoning or chokes, you have the legal obligation to help your guest. Again, this is because of the special relationship rule. But this rule doesn’t apply to trespassers. Personal injury law does extend the duty of care standard in some instances. As you can see, personal injury law is complex and does extend the duty of care standard in some instances.