Auto Accident Injury in Springfield, MA
Have you suffered an injury due to a car accident in Springfield? 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 and around Springfield, MA that will fight for your legal rights and help you receive the financial compensation you deserve.
Auto Accident Injury Statistics in Springfield, 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. According to the State Highway Safety Report, there were approximately 100,000 car crashes across the state in 2020. The majority of these crashes involved property damage only, but there were still over 335 fatal crashes. In addition, there were 50 pedestrians who were hit and killed in 2020. In Springfield alone, there were 9 fatal accidents. Fortunately, Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition advocates for the implementation of Vision Zero across the state. Vision Zero is a strategy to eliminate all traffic fatalities and severe injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, and equitable mobility.
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.
Springfield car accidents involving injuries, fatalities, and property damage over $1,000 must be reported immediately to the police. You must stay at the crash scene and call 911. A crash report must then be filed with the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) within five days, unless you are physically incapable of doing so. A copy must also be sent to the Springfield Police Department. You can request a copy of your crash report online from the RMV at a cost of $20.
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
According to the Centers for Disease Control, the total cost of traffic crash deaths in Massachusetts in 2018 was $522 million. The average cost per crash is approximately $3,700, based on 141,935 total crashes in 2018. The bulk of the cost is attributed to work loss costs, with a total price tag of $516 million. The balance of $6 million is attributable to exclusively medical costs. In terms of road user type, 62% of the total cost is attributable to motor vehicle occupants, 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 Springfield
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 is a no-fault state for auto accidents. This means if you have a car accident in Springfield, you must file a claim with your own insurance provider to pay for your medical expenses, property damage and other fees. However, you can bring a personal injury claim against another driver in certain circumstances, such as if there are extremely serious injuries.
According to the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General, Springfield motorists are required to carry four types of coverage. Specifically, you must carry $40,000 per accident for bodily injury, $8,000 in personal injury, $40,000 per accident for bodily injury from an uninsured auto, and $5,000 for damage to another’s property.
Statute of Limitations in Springfield
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. In Massachusetts, the statute of limitations for filing an auto accident suit is three years. If you live in Springfield, this means you only have three years from the date of your crash to file a claim for damages.
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 Near Springfield, MA
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. We can even help you connect with legal help across Massachusetts state lines.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an attorney in your area!