Auto Accident Injury in Massachusetts
Have you suffered an injury due to a car accident in Massachusetts? If so, your life may never be the same again. Injuries from a car accident can interfere with your ability both to work and to enjoy everyday activities. They can also be incredibly painful. As such, you need an auto accident attorney who understands the laws in MA that will fight for your legal rights and help you receive the financial compensation you deserve.
Auto Accident Injury Statistics in Massachusetts
According to the National Safety Council, in 2019 about 4.4 million people suffered serious injuries in motor vehicle accidents and an estimated 38,000 were killed.
Between the years 2012 and 2016, the number of non-fatal injury accidents in Massachusetts was on the rise, increasing from 31,185 to 35,061. In 2016, the numbers began to decline. There were 34,854 injury accidents in 2017 and 34,087 in 2018. The number of fatal accidents varied across all five years, ranging from a low of 326 in 2015 to a high of 362 in 2012. Property damage only accidents demonstrated a similar trend as injury crashes, except that the increases continued all the way up to 2017 before dipping down again in 2018. There were 100,846 of these accidents in 2017 and 100,085 in 2018. In 2012, that number was 79,808.
What to Do After an Auto Accident
It’s important to be prepared in the event you are a victim of a car accident. Below are the steps to remember immediately after your crash.
Receive Immediate Medical Attention
What is the most important step that you need to take after an auto accident? You need to receive immediate and proper medical treatment. You may believe that the injuries sustained after an auto accident are minor. Proper medical treatment helps ensure that you have not sustained any internal injuries that you may not be aware of.
File a Police Report
Even if no one sustained injuries, you still need to call 911 and request law enforcement assistance. When officers arrive, jot down each one’s name and badge number. Answer their questions honestly, but don’t volunteer any unasked for information, especially your thoughts on exactly what happened or who caused the car accident. Be sure to ask the officers for the number of their police report. Also ask when and where you can get a copy of it, including how much it will cost you.
The owner of a vehicle involved in a car crash is required to file a Motor Vehicle Crash Operator Report form within five days of the accident when personal injury, death or property damage exceeding $1,000 occurs, unless the owner is physically incapacitated. The form must be filed with the appropriate law enforcement department and with the Registry of Vehicles. Failure to do so may result in driver’s license suspension or revocation.
Gather the Appropriate Documentation
While waiting for officers to arrive after a car accident, collect information from all other drivers involved in the accident, including the following:
- Full name, address, phone number and email address
- Driver’s license state and number
- Auto insurance company name, policy number and phone number
Use your cell phone to take pictures of each driver’s license, auto insurance card, your vehicle and each additional vehicle involved in the car accident. Don’t rely on verbal communication. Having as much information as possible will only help you and your case later on. Try to keep this exchange as civil and friendly as possible. However, do not apologize for causing the accident or indicate in any way that you think you may have caused it.
Recovering Damages After an Auto Accident Injury
After surviving a car accident, the emotional and economic toll it takes can be staggering. You are not only dealing with the mental anguish that comes with being involved in a crash, but you may also be experiencing severe physical harm as well.
Common injuries associated with motor vehicle accidents include:
- Burn injuries
- Back and neck injuries, such as whiplash
- Brain and head injuries
- Broken bones
- Spinal injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
In 2018, traffic deaths incurred a cost of $522 million in the state. The bulk of the cost is attributed to lost work, with a price tag of $516 million. The remaining $6 million came from medical costs. Vehicle passengers suffered the highest rate of burden, with 62% of the total, followed by motorcyclists at 19%, pedestrians at 18% and bicyclists at 1%.
Hiring a car accident lawyer ensures you have the financial ability to cover any losses that have occurred as a result of a crash. An auto accident attorney will also help you handle the paperwork that you will have to complete from insurance companies. This boosts your odds of receiving the insurance compensation you deserve.
Auto Accident Laws in Massachusetts
Liability Laws for MA
When car accidents happen, it is essential to determine who bears responsibility for the resulting damage and medical bills. Determining fault impacts everything from your insurance claim and level of liability to the amount of confusion you may endure during the claims process.
Massachusetts has established a comparative negligence law as part of the state’s set of General Laws. Comparative negligence means that more than one driver can be deemed at fault in a car crash. When damages are sought, the burden for establishing comparative negligence rests on the defendant. The amount awarded then depends on the percentage of fault associated with each party. Thus, if the plaintiff is found to be 30% at fault, they would collect 70% of the damages.
Statute of Limitations in MA
Each state has its own tort laws that determine the statute of limitations on a claim. In some states, this gives you just one year to file a claim in court, while some others may give you up to six years. The Massachusetts statute of limitations for filing an auto accident claim is three years from the date the accident occurred. This is why it is important to consult with an attorney immediately after your car crash. Don’t wait and risk losing out on any compensation they can recover.
Work With an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer In Massachusetts
After a car accident, you have enough to worry about. We can help you find an auto accident attorney for your unique case. Get the financial restitution that you deserve if you’re the victim of someone else’s conduct.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in MA!