Ran into at a wedding
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Ran into at a wedding
My wife and I were dancing at a wedding when a really drunk guy ran into her really hard while dancing. She went to the doctor the next day because she couldn’t walk on it and they told her she has ligament damage and a bone bruise. She could have a fractured foot but we didn’t want to get an MRI since they are so expensive. This all happened on the 25th of June and she just went back to the doctor today 7/6/2016because it was still hurting so bad. She will have to do intense physical therapy and if it doesn’t get better she will need an MRI. I am just not sure what to do since she has missed work for 2 weeks and we have racked up some medical costs from her having to go to the doctor. Not to mention she is pain and has been on crutches the entire time which is annoying. We are not sure if we should just talk to the guy ourselves but we are assuming he doesn’t want to fork out a couple thousand dollars to people he doesn’t know. If you have any advice that would be awesome and greatly appreciated.
Asked on July 6, 2016 under Personal Injury, Oregon
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 6 years ago | Contributor
You can try to sue him--the only way to get money from him if he will not voluntarily pay--but may have a hard time winning. That is because you not only need to prove that he was negligent, or unreasonably careless, in causing the injury (which you may be able to do, if he got really drunk and ran into her; getting excessively drunk and losing control can be negligent) but also have to show:
1) That she was not contributorily negligent--i.e. that she was not also careless, such as by not watching out for where she was dancing; and
2) That she did "assume the risk" of some injury happening by dancing at an event where alcohol was present--that is, there is a certain likelihood at an event like this of a drunk person falling into/against you, and under the law, if you are injured by a known and predictable risk of an activity you voluntarily undertake, you cannot collect for it. (E.g the risk of turning an ankle while playing sports.)
Between 1) and 2) while you could win if you sue--and if the cost is high enough, it's worth trying--you can't count on winning: a court could conclude that being injured while dancing is a risk you simply take by dancing at an event where alcohol is served and where the dance floor is (if it's anything like weddings I've been to) crowded.
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