Facebook Pixel
Get your FREE Immediate Case Evaluation

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Get your FREE Immediate Case Evaluation

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

How Do I Find a Good Car Accident Lawyer?

The first step in finding a good car accident lawyer is understanding what constitutes one. A good lawyer has experience in the field and puts the client’s best interests above everything else. Suppose you suffered an injury or lost someone you love in a car accident. In that case, you have the right to fight for compensation, and an experienced team of car accident lawyers in Massachusetts could help you reach a fast and fair settlement.

What Does a Car Accident Lawyer Do?

Car accident lawyers help victims of negligent drivers recover compensation for their losses. Their expertise is in tort law, and some of the components of their jobs include the following:

  • Negotiating with the insurance company to reach a settlement for their client
  • Investigating the accident to find evidence they can use to substantiate their client’s claim of negligence
  • Gathering the necessary documentation to prove compensatory damages
  • Interviewing their client’s family, friends, and acquaintances to prove claims involving the accident’s psychological impact on their client
  • Accessing experts in various fields relevant to the case to provide expert testimony for the client
  • Drafting a letter detailing the accident, the defendant’s negligent actions, and the client’s list of demands
  • Representing the client and questioning the defendant during the deposition portion of the discovery phase
  • Preparing all necessary paperwork and ensuring there are no mistakes that could inhibit their client’s ability to recover losses

When you hire a car accident lawyer, they take over every aspect of your case, acting as your representative. Often the legal process is overwhelming and too challenging for someone without experience in tort law, especially when suffering from severe injuries or grieving a lost loved one.

When Do You Need a Car Accident Lawyer for Your Case?

You can contact a car accident attorney any time after the accident. Not all cases result in a lawsuit or require the assistance of a car accident attorney, primarily because Massachusetts is a no-fault auto insurance state. When an accident occurs, the law states that victims must file a claim through their own personal injury protection insurance. The minimum requirement is $8,000 of coverage for medical expenses, lost income, and replacement services. It does not cover non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering, and will only cover 75% of your lost income.

For people who suffer severe injuries in a devastating accident, the $8,000 limit is likely not enough. Thankfully, Massachusetts has a threshold for injury that allows you to bypass the no-fault requirement and file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver in your case. The qualifications to do so include $2,000 in medical bills or an injury resulting in severe or permanent disfigurement, loss of sight or hearing, or fractured bones. If you suffered injuries severe enough to step outside the PIP claim requirement and file a lawsuit, you likely want a car accident lawyer to help you build a case and ensure you adequately value your losses.

What Other Massachusetts Laws Govern Car Accident Cases?

Apart from the no-fault auto insurance requirement, other pertinent laws govern auto accident claims in Massachusetts. A good car accident lawyer is well-versed in these tenants of tort law and will help you understand how they might apply to your case. This is especially important if you share fault for the accident.

Reporting a Car Accident

No specific law states that you must report a car accident to the police. However, it is highly advisable if you suffer injuries or substantial damages. A police report can be a valuable source of evidence to back up your negligence claims. On the other hand, state law requires you to report the accident to the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles if someone died or suffered an injury due to the collision or if damage to a vehicle or other property exceeds $1,000. When you file the report, you must also send a copy to the police station where the accident occurred.

Statute of Limitations

A statute of limitations limits the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit. Whether you file a wrongful death claim or a standard car accident lawsuit, you have three years from the date of the person’s death or three years from the accident’s date, respectively. It is essential to be mindful of this deadline because insurance companies will sometimes employ delay tactics to ensure you miss the deadline to file a lawsuit, limiting your ability to recover damages to whatever settlement they offer you. If you attempt to file after the deadline passes, the court will almost definitely dismiss your case.

The Comparative Negligence Rule

Once your attorney drafts a demand letter, including your claims of the other party’s negligence, you can expect the insurance company to respond with counterclaims. The insurance adjuster assigned to your claim will conduct an independent investigation, sometimes coming to conclusions that differ from your attorney’s findings. However, suppose they can provide sufficient evidence proving you are at least partially liable for the accident. In that case, it will impact your compensation because the court applies the comparative negligence rule.

The comparative negligence rule mandates that the court assign percentages of fault to both parties. They will then deduct an amount equal to your percentage of liability from the confirmed value of your losses. In a pure comparative negligence state, your percentage of fault does not affect your ability to recover damages unless you are more liable than the other party. Only a handful of states adhere to this version. Most, including Massachusetts, apply the modified comparative negligence rule. If your percentage of fault is more than 50%, you are disqualified from receiving compensation.

For example, suppose the court determines you and the defendant are equally liable for the accident, and your losses amount to $10,000 in damages. In that case, you can still recover $5,000, which reflects your percentage of fault. If you are 30% responsible, you can receive $7,000, which equals the defendant’s percentage of liability. However, if you are 51% at fault or more, you will no longer qualify for damages according to the modified comparative negligence rule.

Can You Schedule a Consultation with a Massachusetts Car Accident Lawyer for Free?

Personal injury attorneys handle car accident cases every day in Massachusetts. They understand the devastation an accident can cause and how important it is to recover your losses as quickly as possible. As a result, many car accident lawyers offer free consultations and work on contingency so that you have the help you need without adding to your financial burdens. In addition, they will answer your questions and help you find the right path to compensation.

At Jason Stone Injury Lawyers, we commit our expertise to helping personal injury victims rebuild their lives by fighting to protect their right to compensation. If you suffered severe injuries in a car accident in Massachusetts, our legal team could help you rebuild. We understand the financial losses associated with car accident cases, so we offer our services at no upfront cost. The first promise made to our clients under the Stone Cold Guarantee is that we only get paid when you get paid. Contact Jason Stone Injury Lawyers at (800) 577-5188 to schedule your free consultation today. There’s No Obligation, Just Information (R).

Get your FREE Immediate Case Evaluation

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.