When involved in a car accident, the sooner you get legal help, the simpler the legal process becomes. Boston car accident lawyers have the chance to investigate the accident scene, preserve evidence, identify responsible parties, and work toward getting you the compensation entitled by law. Boston car accident attorney John J. Sheehan has been handling auto accident cases since 1993.
For the average person, a car accident is complicated, especially when you are injured. Knowing what to say or not to say to insurance adjusters, figuring out how to cover medical bills, and even just getting your car fixed can be a hassle. An experienced Boston auto accident attorney has the legal know-how to help you deal with all these issues and guide you through the claims process.
Boston Auto Accident Frequently Asked Questions
- What are Comparative negligence laws in Massachusetts
- What You Should Know About Motor Vehicle Insurance
- How does Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance cover auto accidents?
- Although I have PIP insurance, what are my rights to sue?
- If I have PIP, why do I need a lawyer?
- What other damages can you obtain by suing?
- How do you get your car fixed?
Comparative negligence law in Massachusetts
A car accident case is based on the negligence of the driver who is most at fault for the accident. Negligence implies that one party owes another a duty of care, that the duty was neglected, and as a result the other party was harmed. To determine negligence in Massachusetts, the fault of one party is compared to the fault of the other party.
For example, if a driver was drunk and speeding when he or she ran a red light, that party’s fault for the accident would probably be 100 percent. However, if one driver was distracted while talking on a cell phone and the other driver was speeding, both may bear some responsibility in a collision. To recover damages in Massachusetts, your lawyer must prove that the other party was more than 50 percent at fault.
Motor Vehicle Insurance
Massachusetts is a no-fault insurance state, and motorists are required to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. PIP benefits cover up to $2,000 in medical bills. If you have no health insurance, PIP benefits may cover up to $8,000 in medical bills. You are not allowed to sue another negligent party unless damages exceed a certain monetary amount or your injuries meet a certain threshold, such as loss of a limb, blindness, permanent disfigurement, and death.
Motorcycle riders are not covered by PIP coverage, but they may be able to seek medical costs under uninsured motorist or under-insured motorist coverage or private health insurance. However, if another driver’s negligence caused your motorcycle accident, a lack of PIP coverage also means that your ability to sue for damages is not limited.
How does Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance cover auto accidents?
PIP benefits covers up to $2,000 in medical bills and the rest must be covered by your private health insurance. If you have no health insurance, PIP benefits may cover up to $8,000 in medical bills. It also covers 75 percent of lost wages, but up to the limit $8,000, which is a combined limit for medical bills and lost wages.
Although I have PIP insurance, what are my rights to sue?
Under Massachusetts law, you can sue another party in an auto accident case if these conditions exist:
- Medical bills (necessary and reasonable) exceed $2,000
- Your injury consists of a fracture, permanent disfigurement, partial or whole loss of limb, or a loss of sight, hearing, or another sense
- Death occurred
If I have PIP coverage, why do I need a lawyer?
Serious injury usually results in extreme expenses, especially when permanent disability occurs. A Boston auto accident lawyer can investigate and identify other sources of compensation, such as the manufacturer of defective auto parts or government entity for unsafe roads, if these were factors in causing the accident.
What other damages can you obtain by suing?
You can seek economic damages, including property damage, lost wages, and medical bills. You also can sue for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, scarring, mental and emotional suffering, permanent disability, inconvenience, loss of consortium (spousal relations), and loss of enjoyment of life.
How do you get your car fixed?
In an auto accident, the responsible party’s insurance must pay for your towing, storage, rental car, and vehicle repair costs. The defendant’s insurance company can cover these costs or your collision insurance can cover the costs. Attorney Sheehan can advise you on the best way to fix your car.
Responsive legal help
As a Boston personal injury lawyer I work hard to answer all your questions, explain what to expect, and take your calls 24/7. I want you to know that your case is in good hands. I have the professional resources to reconstruct your accident, medical experts available to evaluate the extent of your injury, and the experience to negotiate a fair settlement or take your case to trial. Most cases settle outside of court, but I am always prepared to litigate if necessary.
One call or click is all it takes for Boston car accident attorney John J. Sheehan to fight for you!
Other articles related to Boston car accidents: