One of the great privileges of living in America is that its citizens can travel freely across the nation. Many people drive to neighboring states or longer distances for work, events, vacations, and to visit family. An unfortunate fact is that car accidents can happen to anyone, whether you’re close to home or several states away.
This fact brings some questions to mind: if you have a car accident in another state, will your auto insurance policy cover you? Should you hire a car crash lawyer from your state or the state where the accident occurred?
Will Your Auto Insurance Policy Cover Accidents in Other States?
Every state in the U.S. has minimum required coverage amounts, which can vary significantly. Most insurance companies will meet another state’s minimums, but it’s a good idea to check your policy before traveling.
Most states are “at-fault” states, meaning that the responsible driver(s)’ are liable to pay compensation for damages. In these states, some fault guidelines govern who can seek compensation after a car crash and who eligible victims can recover damages from. At-fault states use pure comparative fault, modified comparative fault, and contributory negligence rules.
However, some are “no-fault” states and require personal injury protection insurance. These policies should cover many, but not all, accident-related expenses regardless of who is at fault.
Insurance claims are handled differently depending on the state in which an accident occurs. These claims can become complicated very quickly. Before You Deal With the Insurance Companies on Your Own, You Better Phone Stone®.
Where Should You Hire a Lawyer?
To pursue a lawsuit in a specific state, an attorney must be admitted to that state’s bar. If your accident happened in a neighboring state, your area’s attorneys likely have the proper bar admission to handle your case. However, long-distance accidents present some complications when it comes to hiring a lawyer.
You would have two options if your accident occurred a few states away from your home. You can try to find an attorney in your home state to obtain special permission from the other state, known as pro hac vice admission. If you choose this option, it’s best to search for a local lawyer who has experience handling out-of-state claims.
The second option is likely the better one: hire an attorney from the state where the collision happened. There are a few reasons for doing so:
- Attorneys should be familiar with their state’s laws and procedures regarding car accidents.
- The overall costs of the case will likely be less.
- A lawyer in that state already has admission to the bar.
- Attorneys can handle investigations and personal injury lawsuits more easily when they’re located in the appropriate jurisdiction.
What Other Complications May Arise?
Prepare for further complications if a commercial or state-owned vehicle caused your accident.
When you sue a corporation like a trucking company, laws require that lawsuits be filed in the state where the corporation’s headquarters is located. This situation can become even more complex if the commercial driver’s residence is in a different state.
If the vehicle that caused your accident belongs to the state or another government agency, any claim is subject to strict procedures and timelines:
- The statute of limitations for filing a claim is typically significantly shorter than for other personal injury claims.
- You must prepare your claim correctly, without errors, according to that state’s guidelines.
- You have to file your claim with the right person or agency.
- You must follow state rules that specify how notices of claim should be delivered.
This is only a partial list of the complications when filing an insurance claim or lawsuit against a government agency. It’s best to hire an attorney in that state because your lawyer needs to be familiar with these regulations.
Other Government Involvement
At times, poorly maintained roads or malfunctioning traffic lights can cause collisions. Because government agencies are responsible for these factors, those agencies may be found liable for causing your accident. The same complications you see when a government-owned vehicle causes a crash apply in this instance.
Do You Know What To Do After a Car Crash?
Especially if you’re out of state, you’ll benefit from following these steps.
If your injuries don’t prevent it, attempt to assist others injured in the accident. At the least, you can familiarize yourself with the number and severity of injuries.
Notify the Police
The knowledge you gain from assessing other people’s injuries can help 911 dispatchers decide how many first responders to send to your accident scene. Just because someone else has notified the police doesn’t mean you don’t need to call them.
Use Your Phone
Because you’re at the scene immediately after your accident, you have a unique opportunity to capture and preserve evidence. This evidence is particularly useful for out-of-state accidents. Use your phone to take photos and videos of details like:
- Injuries and vehicle damage
- Those present at the scene, including witnesses
- Witness statements and your own account of how the accident occurred
- Light, weather, and road conditions
- Skid marks, potholes, and roadway obstructions that may have contributed to causing the crash
- Any other pertinent details
Your Jason Stone Injury Lawyers attorney will thank you.
Accept or Seek Medical Attention
Your health condition after a car accident needs to be assessed immediately. Some injuries aren’t visible, and a professional assessment can diagnose them. In addition, your attorney will use the report from your exam as evidence in your claims.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
A personal injury attorney can provide invaluable advice about your legal standing and things you should and shouldn’t do.
Why Should You Choose Jason Stone Injury Lawyers?
If you’re involved in a car accident in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, or New York, you’ll want to hire a local attorney with full knowledge of state laws and proven experience in handling car accident claims successfully. Regardless of your home state, you can meet with the attorneys from Jason Stone Injury Lawyers via video calls for your convenience.
Every client benefits from our Stone Cold Guarantee. We guarantee that we will:
- Guide you throughout your recovery process.
- Respond to calls within 24 hours.
- Provide case updates every two weeks.
- Have someone available to speak to you 24/7.
- Meet with you face to face within 24 hours of a request.
- Fight with insurance companies to keep them from taking advantage of you.
These are only some of our promises to you. Jason Stone Injury Lawyers is dedicated to helping injured accident victims to recover physically, emotionally, and financially. You can trust us to do everything we can to provide assistance after your car accident.
Do You Need To Hire a Car Accident Attorney?
Because we focus on personal injury law, Jason Stone Injury Lawyers is well-equipped to navigate your car accident claim and recover the maximum compensation you deserve. We have won over $60 million for our clients, and we’d like to add your award to that amount.
We’ll begin with a free consultation. There’s no obligation, just information ®. You won’t owe us any fees until we’ve won compensation for you. Contact Jason Stone Injury Lawyers 24/7 to request assistance. Better Phone Stone at (800) 577-5188, use live chat, or submit an online contact request.