Res Ipsa Loquitur

Definition - What does Res Ipsa Loquitur mean?

Res ipsa loquitur is a Latin term that means "the thing speaks for itself." This term is commonly used in negligence cases where an injury would not have occurred had the defendant fulfilled his or her responsibilities. In such cases, attorneys may try to make the point that "the thing speaks for itself" because the defendant had a responsibility to prevent injuries.

Justipedia explains Res Ipsa Loquitur

Many times, an individual or a business professional may have a legal responsibility to perform a certain act. If such an act is not performed and an injury occurs as a result, then the person who neglected his or her responsibility can be sued. For example, a construction company may have a responsibility to put up a sign informing passers by of danger. If such a company fails to do this and an injury occurs as a result, they may be sued by a party claiming that they are guilty res ipsa loquitur.

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