New Bedford, MA Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents are often unexpected and can happen nearly anywhere. For instance, harmful crashes are regularly suffered on highways, parking lots, and city streets. Furthermore, they can happen in crowded urban areas and quiet residential neighborhoods. In many cases, these accidents happen because of drivers’ negligence.
You may be able to sue an at-fault driver for the car accident injuries you suffered. However, there are several important elements that must be satisfied in order for your case to prevail. Fortunately, you can call our law firm for help evaluating the strength of your potential lawsuit.
In the aftermath of a collision in New Bedford, MA, get help from our experienced car accident attorneys at the Law Office of John J. Sheehan by dialing (617) 925-6407.
Who Can File a Car Accident Lawsuit in New Bedford, MA?
Massachusetts courts abide by no-fault car insurance rules. This means that after many accidents, victims will have to seek compensation for their injuries by filing claims with their own insurance companies. However, under specific circumstances, injured motorists may be able to sue the drivers who caused their collisions.
In order to sue another driver, you must have sustained a serious injury because of your accident. Specifically, you must have suffered at least $2,000 in medical bills or suffered a qualifying injury. Injuries that qualify include those that cause significant and permanent disfigurement, broken or fractured bone, or substantial loss of hearing or visual acuity.
Plaintiffs in car accident lawsuits may have access to certain monetary damages that cannot be recovered from their own insurance companies. During a free assessment of your potential case, our car accident lawyers will determine if you can file a car accident lawsuit against another party.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in New Bedford, MA
A high number of car accidents happen as the result of drivers’ negligence. These accidents can result in serious harm.
As an example, one of the most common sources of car crashes is speeding. While travelling at high speeds, motorists are often unable to react in time to avoid collisions when vehicles in front of them stop or slow down. Speeding drivers are also prone to losing control of their vehicles and straying outside of their lanes. Unfortunately, high-speed accidents are also more likely to result in devastating injuries.
Additionally, many car accidents in New Bedford happen because of distracted drivers. Drivers can become manually, visually, or cognitively distracted. Examples of activities that cause distraction behind the wheel include texting, eating, picking music for the stereo, and talking with passengers. Some activities such as texting can involve multiple forms of distraction. Thankfully, distracted drivers may be held responsible for the harm caused by their accidents.
A high number of car crashes also happen because drivers commit improper left turns. When motorists fail to yield the right-of-way before making a left turn, devastating collisions can occur with vehicles in other lanes of travel. In many cases, drivers make improper left turns because they simply do not notice other vehicles travelling towards them. These actions are particularly common at intersections during periods of high traffic congestion.
Finally, car accidents regularly occur because of drunk drivers. While intoxicated, motorists will exhibit poor reaction times, reckless decision-making abilities, and blurry vision. Accidents caused by drunk drivers most often happen at night. Still, they may occur at any time of day. If you were injured because of a crash involving a drunk driver, then you may be entitled to significant compensation for the harm you incurred.
Can You File a Lawsuit if You Share Fault for Your Car Accident in New Bedford, MA?
There are scenarios where fault for car accidents is shared. For instance, if you were speeding when you were struck by a distracted driver, then you may share some of the blame for your collision. If you are partially at fault, you may still file a car accident lawsuit against another party. However, the amount of damages you are awarded can be limited.
Massachusetts courts abide by the rules of modified comparative fault when apportioning damages in car accident cases. This means that compensation is awarded based on each party’s percentage of responsibility. As an example, if you were 10% to blame for your accident while the defendant is 90% at fault, then the defendant will be liable for 90% of the damages you incurred while you are left to account for the leftover 10%.
However, if your share of responsibility for an accident exceeds 50%, then you will be unable to sue another driver. The defendant in your case may attempt to shift blame and argue that you are at fault. Thankfully, there are several different types of evidence that can be used to support your case. Do not let a defendant’s counterarguments deter you from recovering the full range of payment you deserve.
Should You Give Your Medical Records to Another Driver’s Insurance Company After an Accident in New Bedford?
In the aftermath of your car accident, you may receive a request from another driver’s insurance company seeking information from your medical records. However, you should never give up your medical records without first consulting with our attorneys. If your medical information falls into the hands of another party’s insurer, your case may be jeopardized. Our legal team can help prevent you from mistakenly disclosing information that could hurt your claim.
When to See a Doctor After Suffering a Car Crash in New Bedford, MA
If your car accident injuries require emergency care, you should call an ambulance and be taken to the hospital in the immediate aftermath of your accident. If your injuries do not require immediate care, you should still visit a doctor as soon as you can. If you wait for your injuries to heal on their own, you can complicate the settlement process.
Car Accident Victims in New Bedford, MA Can Call Our Law Firm for Support
Seek help from our experienced car accident lawyers by calling Law Office of John J. Sheehan today at (617) 925-6407.