In the aftermath of a car accident in Westwood, seeking the counsel of a dedicated Westwood personal injury lawyer can make all the difference. With their local expertise and commitment to serving the community, they provide invaluable support and legal representation.
What Damages Westwood Car Accidents Cause
If you were injured in a car accident in the United States this year, you were one of about 3 million people. The results may have included medical and repair bills.
You’re not alone. Each motor vehicle accident creates damages. In a legal sense, damages refer to the loss caused by one person (or organization) to another person or his property. These come in various forms, including the following.
Your car might be pretty banged up after a collision. An impact can break parts that your car needs to run properly. Other damages affect the appearance, rather than the performance of your vehicle, and lower your car’s resale value.
After an accident, an attorney can request a mechanic to assess for:
- Rear-end damage: If you were hit from behind, you might have to fix your bumper, taillights, truck, or fenders.
- Front-end damage: Getting hit from the front can crumple your hood, crack your headlights, and destroy your bumper, grills, or windshield. Since many of your car’s mechanical parts are in the front, you will need to examine the state of interior mechanical structures. This work should be done by a professional who can take apart your car because some problems may not be visible without some disassembly.
- Suspension damage: An ordinary drive on Route 128 might take you over bumps and potholes. Your car’s suspension system should absorb the shocks and protect other car parts. In an accident, you will need to check this system’s integrity to prevent future problems.
- Dents: Dents can be tricky to fix. If the damage is extensive, you may have to replace your bumper and side panels. Leaving a dent unrepaired can lead to body damage from rust. Dents are sometimes purely cosmetic issues, but they may also indicate problems with lighting, airbags, cameras, and warning sensors.
- Scratches and chips: When a car is hit, the impact of the other vehicle can leave deep scratches in your paint. Shallow scratches have to be buffed out and repainted. Deeper scratches may require part replacement or a more extensive paint job.
- Tire damage: A tire might look fine from the outside, but tires can sustain damages indiscernible to the untrained eye. For instance, you might have hit a curb or worn away tread by screeching to a stop. If you do not repair or replace your tire, you could increase the risk of a blowout in the future.
Like so many others involved in motor vehicle accidents, you might have needed medical treatment for your injuries, such as:
- Broken bones
- Dislocated joints
- Herniated discs
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Loss of limbs (amputation)
- Lacerations, bruises, and road rash from skidding on pavement
- Crush injuries from being caught between 2 objects
A medical professional should examine you after a car accident, especially because some injuries are only apparent after some time:
- Whiplash: Whiplash is a soft-tissue injury to the neck. In an automobile accident, your head may jerk suddenly, causing injury to your vertebrae, joints, discs, ligaments, muscles, and nerves. You may not realize the severity of your symptoms until days after an accident.
- Traumatic brain injury: Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when sudden trauma damages the brain. TBIs vary in severity. For instance, a concussion involves a temporary loss of brain functioning and may be serious but is not usually life-threatening. But during a car accident, severe, potentially fatal TBIs could occur, as in cases where objects pierce the head or objects crush the skull.
If you add up all accident-related hospital stays for auto injury cases, the total would be more than 1 million days per year. While recovering, some people can’t work. Many families struggle to make ends meet after car accidents because they have medical bills to pay on top of their everyday living expenses. An attorney can calculate the value of your average salary to ensure you get maximum compensation for lost employment.
Psychological and emotional distress
All of the previous damages discussed were economic losses. Yet, after an accident, you may find that your mental and emotional health also suffers. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depressive symptoms are associated with accidents. Chronic pain also may make you lose pleasure in activities you once enjoyed. A lawyer can help you seek compensation for the non-economic losses of major car crashes.
Upwards of 100 people die from motor vehicle accidents every day in the US. In Massachusetts, you can recover the costs of funeral expenses for your loved one. These might include medical expenses incurred before death, such as medical transportation in an ambulance or helicopter. In reality, medical costs for fatal injuries mount quickly.
If your loved one lost his or her life in an accident, we want to help. Specific rules apply to wrongful death accidents in Massachusetts. We offer free legal consultations in our law office at 240 Providence Hwy, Westwood, MA 02090. If you feel more comfortable speaking with us virtually, call (800) 577-5188 or fill out the brief contact form to schedule an appointment with a caring personal injury attorney.
According to the CDC, the costs of medical care and productivity losses exceeded $75 billion in 2017. Without a doubt, accidents are financially and psychologically devastating. How can you avoid being crushed by the stress of a vehicle accident?
How a Personal Injury Lawyer Recovers Compensation for Westwood Accident Injury Cases
In Massachusetts, drivers are required to have an auto insurance policy. Mass.gov describes policies as contracts: You pay the premiums and agree to follow the insurance company’s terms and conditions. The insurer is to pay for qualifying accident expenses, but they won’t always want to.
Making sure the insurance company holds up its end
Mandatory coverage includes:
- Bodily Injury to Others: You must have a policy guaranteeing $20,000 per person ($40,000 per accident) to cover the costs if you cause physical harm to others with your vehicle.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP): Regardless of who caused the accident, PIP covers the costs of medical expenses, lost wages, household services, and funeral expenses up to a certain limit. The law requires you to carry a policy worth at least $8,000.
- Bodily Injury Caused by an Uninsured Auto: You must hold a policy guaranteeing $20,000 per person ($40,000 per accident) to cover the costs if a driver without insurance hits you.
- Damage to Someone Else’s Property: This coverage of at least $5,000 per accident covers dents, scratches, and other damage to cars or property.
Just like any contract, your agreement with your auto insurance only works well when both parties keep up their ends of the bargain. Unfortunately, not every insurer is willing to pay what is fair for a car accident.
An experienced personal injury attorney knows what accidents are worth. After all, a capable lawyer understands the fine print about what your insurance company is legally required to cover. If they are not upholding the contract, an attorney can pressure insurance companies to settle legal disputes fairly or defend their dishonest behavior in court.
In addition to your auto accident insurance, Massachusetts Health Care Reform Law requires you to carry health insurance if you can afford it or pay a tax return penalty. Often, adults receive health care plans through their employers or government programs. Dependent adult children can stay on their parents’ plans until they turn 26.
In general, medical insurers cover:
- Hospital visits
- Doctor and dentist appointments
- Medical transportation
- Lab tests
- Medical devices
Appealing your denied claim
Similar to auto insurance companies, medical insurers are for-profit businesses that are interested in making money. They might consider it a win if they pay the smallest amount possible for your accident claim. They may deny your application for reimbursement, even if that leaves you struggling with medical debt.
A rejection letter is not the end of the world. You have the option to appeal the insurance company’s decision. A Westwood personal injury lawyer can help you understand more about your rights to compensation from your medical insurance. Massachusetts law regulates insurance companies, so there is no shame in getting help to protect your legal rights.
Our law office has representatives available to answer your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you want to make sure you are being treated fairly by your insurers, call (800) 577-5188 for a free initial consultation with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer.
You might be thinking that those minimum coverage amounts seemed relatively low considering the notoriously high costs of health care these days. If that was true in your case, an attorney might be able to hold the responsible entity liable for additional losses if your medical expenses exceed $2,000, or if the accident permanently blinded, deafened, or disfigured you.
When the Other Driver Was Negligent
The careless actions of negligent people (or organizations) trigger accidents. In fact, the National Safety Council identifies the leading cause of “entirely preventable” vehicle crash deaths in 16 states as “distraction, speed, and alcohol.” The people responsible for these crashes should be held accountable for the preventable injuries and deaths.
From the moment drivers turn on the ignition, they are expected to operate their motor vehicles safely. If carelessness results in injury or death, the law can hold them responsible for the damages.
Especially if you have lost a loved one in an accident, you know that you lost more than money for medical bills. Nothing can ever replace the companionship and comfort you would have enjoyed if your loved one had lived to his or her full life potential. Wrongful death lawsuits consider the care that the deceased would have provided your family, as well as practical expenses, such as burial costs and the value of lost income for your loved one’s lifetime.
In Massachusetts, a lawyer might file a wrongful death case on your behalf if negligence was the key factor in your loved one’s collision. This is possible if you serve as a representative of the deceased’s estate and if you meet the Massachusetts deadline for filing a wrongful death claim.
How Personal Injury Lawyers Assist Car Accident Victims and Their Families
A personal injury attorney relies on Massachusetts law to get justice for people involved in car accidents. At our law firm, we take the task of investigating the cause of your motor vehicle accident seriously.
We know that you may dread hiring a lawyer or going to court. At our law office, our accident lawyers work hard to use the power of Massachusetts law to maximize your compensation. Many legal cases never go to court because insurers soon see that our clients have a competent team of professionals watching their best interests; instead of spending money fighting a lawsuit, they may be more open to making a fair settlement.
If we do need to protect your interests in court, we do everything we can to make the experience as stress-free for you as possible. A lawyer will handle the heavy lifting without leaving you in the dark. As one client expressed, Jason Stone Injury Lawyers will always tell you the steps and keep you informed.
If you have been in a car accident, contact our law office to speak to an accident lawyer who can answer your questions and address your concerns. There is no obligation to hire us, and you will walk away with a good idea of your legal options.
Visit Jason Stone Injury Lawyers at 240 Providence Hwy, Westwood, MA 02090, or call us at (781) 242-2311. If you live outside of Westwood, Massachusetts, we would be happy to schedule a video conference, or an attorney can meet you at a location convenient to you.