Car Accident Liability
Car accidents have been occurring for as long as people have been driving. Many times, when a car crash occurs, neither driver will take responsibility for causing it. The majority of accidents are preventable, however, and would not have happened without the negligent actions of one or more parties. If you suffered injuries or property damage due to an accident, you may be entitled to recover damages. It is essential to your recovery, however, that you show that another party is liable and should be held responsible for your losses. At Peter Thompson and Associates, our attorneys have more than 60 years of experience in establishing car accident liability. Our knowledgeable New Hampshire car accident attorneys can anticipate any potential obstacles to your recovery and can work diligently on your behalf to help you obtain a favorable outcome.Proving Liability in a Car Accident Case
While there are exceptions, in most car accident cases, you must prove that the defendant’s negligence caused the accident. The defendant is often the other driver involved in the accident. Under New Hampshire law, to prove negligence, you must show that the defendant owed you a duty of care, the defendant breached the duty, the breach was the proximate cause of the accident, and you incurred damages.
A breach is the proximate cause of an accident when it is both the cause in fact and the legal cause. A cause in fact means that the accident would not have occurred without the defendant’s actions, while a legal cause means that the defendant’s actions were a substantial factor in causing the accident. For example, all licensed New Hampshire drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles safely and reasonably and to obey the New Hampshire Motor Vehicle Code. If a driver fails to follow the speed limit or runs a red light, for example, there is a strong argument that a resulting accident would not have occurred if the driver had obeyed traffic rules, and the failure to do so was a substantial factor in causing the accident. An experienced car accident attorney will look for evidence through discovery to support the position that the other driver’s negligence caused your accident and that the other driver should be held liable.Potential Obstacles to Recovery
The defendant may argue several theories to attempt to escape car accident liability. A common defense is that it was not the negligence of the defendant but your negligence that caused the accident. New Hampshire is a comparative negligence state, which means that even if you are found negligent, as long as your fault does not exceed 50%, you can still recover damages.
If you are found negligent, any damages awarded to you will be reduced by the percentage of your fault. For example, if you are found 25% at fault, and a jury awards you $100,000, you can recover $75,000. If car accident liability is disputed, you may need to engage the services of an accident reconstructionist to offer an opinion as to why the accident occurred. The defendant may also attempt to avoid liability for your injuries by arguing that they were caused by a condition that existed before the accident, in which case your attorney may retain a medical expert to offer an opinion as to the cause of your injuries.Damages Recoverable Following a Car Accident
If you suffered injuries or property damage in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be able to recover monetary compensation for any costs incurred and for your pain and suffering. You are entitled to compensation for any medical bills and the anticipated costs of future medical treatment, in addition to expenses incurred in repairing or replacing damaged property. If you could not work after your accident, you may be able to recover compensation for lost wages, and if you were married at the time of the accident, your spouse may also be entitled to damages.Discuss Your Case With a Skilled New Hampshire Attorney
If you suffered harm in a car accident caused by the negligence of another party, you should be able to hold them responsible for any damages that you incurred due to the accident. At Peter Thompson and Associates, our lawyers have the skills and experience needed to set forth a case that will provide you with a strong chance for a successful outcome. Our aggressive advocacy has enabled us to maintain a high success rate and a record of favorable verdicts. We have offices in Bedford, Nashua, Portsmouth, and Manchester and represent clients throughout New Hampshire. Contact us at 800.804.2004 or via our online form to schedule a free consultation.