Eggshell Plaintiff Rule

Eggshell Plaintiff Rule

The Eggshell Plaintiff Rule is a legal principle ensuring that if you are injured in an accident, the party at fault cannot argue against the severity of your injuries due to any pre-existing injury you may have by claiming that an average person would have sustained less severe injuries. 

If you’ve been injured in an accident in Shreveport-Bossier City or the surrounding NWLA areas, whether or not you have a pre-existing injury, it’s time to take action and protect your rights. Contact Lousiana personal injury attorney Michael J. Vergis at the Law Offices of Michael J. Vergis today for a skilled advocate who will tirelessly work to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Call (318) 698-3724 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation today.

What is the Eggshell Plaintiff Rule?

The Eggshell Plaintiff Rule, also referred to as the Eggshell Skull Doctrine, Thin Skull Rule, or the Eggshell Skull Rule, is a fundamental legal principle in tort law that provides protection for accident victims who are medically fragile due to a pre-existing injury or disease. 

The Eggshell Skull Rule states that if the plaintiff’s pre-existing condition is further injured in an incident, such as a motor vehicle accident, the defendant responsible cannot limit liability simply because the victim is more susceptible to sustaining a severe injury. 

For example, if a person with a pre-existing spinal condition is involved in a seemingly minor car accident that results in significant back injuries, the Eggshell Plaintiff Rule ensures that the victim can still seek full compensation for the injuries caused. 

This principle acknowledges the importance of treating each personal injury claim with the understanding that every individual’s health background is unique and ensuring that all accident victims are given a fair chance at justice, regardless of their medical history.

Louisiana Eggshell Rule

Application of the Eggshell Skull Rule in Louisiana Personal Injury Cases

In Louisiana courts apply the Eggshell Plaintiff Doctrine for personal injury cases to ensure justice is served for individuals who suffer more serious injuries due to their unique vulnerabilities. 

This doctrine does not rely on national averages to dictate the outcomes of cases. Instead, it mandates that defendants are responsible for all the resulting consequences of their actions, even if the injuries incurred are unexpectedly severe, resembling the aftermath of what might be considered a “freak accident.”

The courts have consistently held that injured plaintiffs should be compensated for the full extent of their injuries, regardless of their pre-existing condition, emphasizing that defendants must “take their victims as they find them.” 

This principle ensures that each personal injury case is evaluated on its merits, whether the pre-existing condition led to a more severe injury or not, as well as ensures the injured party’s right to a just and equitable assessment of damages.

Impact on Personal Injury Claims

In the context of Louisiana personal injury law, the Eggshell Plaintiff Rule significantly influences the outcome of personal injury claims, particularly in scenarios where an injured plaintiff is at a higher risk of injury due to medical fragility. 

This rule ensures that if an individual’s pre-existing condition makes them more susceptible to injuries, the defendant’s negligence is still considered the legal cause of all injuries resulting from an incident, regardless of the plaintiff’s prior condition or vulnerabilities.

For instance, a person with a known condition that weakens their bones may suffer more severe injuries from a motor vehicle collision or even a minor fall caused by a hazardous condition on a property. In such cases, the Eggshell Doctrine allows for the full scope of damages to be awarded as they would a typical premises liability or car accident victim, reflecting the actual impact of the actions of the negligent defendant on the plaintiff’s health. 

Eggshell Skull Rule

Legal Challenges Surrounding the Eggshell Plaintiff Rule

The application of the eggshell rule often presents legal challenges and controversies, particularly in balancing the interests of plaintiffs and defendants. 

While the rule mandates that a defendant’s negligent behavior that caused the plaintiff’s injuries should be evaluated without regard to the victim’s pre-existing condition or injury, this creates tension in cases where the injured party was at an increased risk of harm due to health issues or medical fragility. 

For example, in an auto accident involving a medically fragile individual who experienced a catastrophic injury, the defendant might argue that an able-bodied person would not have suffered as severely, challenging the extent to which they should award damages. 

Once again, courts strive to uphold the principle that defendants must take plaintiffs as they find them, emphasizing the need for reasonable care to avoid causing harm to others, regardless of their health status. In doing so, courts navigate the interplay between ensuring defendants are not unduly penalized for unforeseeable consequences and recognizing that plaintiffs with a pre-existing medical condition or injury are at an inherently increased risk of suffering more serious injuries.

This principle also underscores the importance of having an experienced attorney who can advocate on the victim’s behalf and effectively argue the extent of damages, ensuring that victims receive fair compensation that accounts for their unique circumstances.

What is the Eggshell Doctrine

How a Reputable Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

An experienced attorney plays a crucial role in personal injury cases, particularly for clients who are physically fragile. An experienced Shreveport personal injury attorney can help prove that the defendant is held responsible for all damages caused by their negligent actions, even when the injured party’s preexisting condition made them more susceptible to injury or future complications. 

They understand the importance of demonstrating that everyone has a duty to exercise reasonable care to avoid causing harm to others, whether they are an incredibly healthy person or are very susceptible to injury. By meticulously gathering and presenting evidence, a skilled attorney can make a compelling case that the injuries sustained were a direct result of the defendant’s actions, ensuring that they fairly compensate their client for all losses and damages resulting from the incident, including medical treatment, lost wages, and emotional injuries. 

This includes not only immediate medical expenses but also long-term care costs, pain and suffering, and any other damages related to the exacerbation of pre-existing conditions caused by the accident. An attorney will work to ensure that the legal system acknowledges and appropriately compensates for the unique challenges and losses the victim suffers. 

What is the Eggshell Doctrine

Call Shreveport-Bossier City Personal Injury Lawyer Michael J. Vergis Today for a Free Consultation

If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence and are facing the confusing, often overwhelming aspect of a personal injury case, especially if you’re dealing with pre-existing conditions, it’s time to turn to a trusted advocate like Attorney at Law Michael J. Vergis

Renowned Northwest Louisiana personal injury lawyer Michael Vergis and his team are here to guide you through every step, ensuring your rights are protected and you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact our law office today by calling (318) 698-3724 or reach out online to schedule a free, confidential consultation.