Negligence is a legal concept that falls under the category of torts. These are civil wrongs and are, therefore, not prosecutable as criminal offenses. There is such a thing as criminal negligence, but this is a very different concept.
Negligence is not quite the same thing as carelessness. A person may be as careful as they are capable of, but still be less competent than expected. Negligence is therefore an act that can be considered culpable because it does not follow what a reasonable person would do to protect another person from foreseeable harm.
This is a civil matter, so the person affected by someone else’s negligence becomes a plaintiff in a civil case. The plaintiff must then prove a number of things, known as elements, in order to prove negligence. These elements include:
The plaintiff must prove all of these things for negligence to be the case. The means that the defendant must have owed and breached a duty, causing injury that would not have otherwise happened. On top of this, it must have caused pecuniary damages.
While this does not sound like a difficult thing to prove, negligence can seem very subjective. This makes it fairly difficult to prove negligence.