What should I do if I have been injured in a motor vehicle accident?
Seek appropriate medical treatment. If you do not have a personal physician, go to a local hospital's emergency room.
Report the accident immediately to your insurance company. You have and obligation to cooperate with your own insurance company. If you are the victim of a motorist who does not have insurance coverage (it happens often), you must report the accident to your own company shortly (within 24 hours) after your accident.
File an accident report with local police.
If possible, obtain photographs of your automobile, the other person's automobile and the roadway (if there are skid marks).
Remember, if the other person's insurance company contacts you, you do not have to talk to their claims adjusters. Everything you say to them is evidence. These people are trained in accident investigation and probably will not act in your best interests. Do you know how many feet per second your automobile travels at 60 mph? They do.
If you feel overwhelmed by your rights and responsibilities, e-mail or call me, and I will lighten your load. It costs you nothing to tell me your problem and ask me for advice.
How much will it cost me to have a personal injury lawyer?
In motor vehicle accident cases, the fee is 33% of the gross amount of your recovery from the other person's insurance company.
What is “No Fault”?
Massachusetts has a very complicated system called No Fault to administer personal injury claims. Unless you have $2,000.00 in reasonable and necessary medical bills, a broken bone or a serious disfigurement (scar), you cannot collect damages against the other person's insurance company. In theory, your own motor vehicle company will pay $8,000.00 worth of your medical bills. However, if you have health insurance, your motor vehicle company will pay the first $2,000.00 and the rest must be submitted to the health carrier. If your health carrier does not pay for certain treatment, your automobile carrier may have to pay for it. It is not unusual for your own insurance company to refuse to pay your own medical bills. If they fail to pay for necessary medical treatment, you can sue your own insurance company.
What is “Workers' Compensation”?
If you are injured at work and are unable to work for more than five days, your employer's insurance company must pay you 60% of your lost wages. You should notify your employer in writing of your injury and inability to work. Your employer must notify its insurance company and it must pay you benefits within 14 days of notice or deny your claim. If denied, you can file a claim with the Industrial Accident Board. If you need to file a claim and you are successful, the insurance company must pay for your legal fees. It costs you nothing to use a lawyer.
What is “Third Party Action”?
If, while you are working, you are the victim of someone's negligent act, you may sue that person. If that someone is your employer or fellow employee, you cannot file a lawsuit. A lawsuit is very different than a Workers' Compensation claim. In a negligence lawsuit, you are entitled to be compensated for the following: medical bills, lost earnings, pain and suffering (mental and physical) and loss of the enjoyment of your life. A common example of a third party action is a person who drives an automobile as part of his/her employment and gets in a car accident. Another common example is a person injured on a construction site due to the negligence of a general contractor in failing to maintain a safe workplace.
Dracut, Massachusetts Personal Injury Lawyers representing cases involving auto accidents, workers compensation, wrongful death, drunk driving accidents, slip and fall accidents, medical malpractice and negligence serving the greater Dracut, MA communities of North Chelmsford, Tyngsboro, Lowell, Chelmsford, Tewksbury, Andover, Lawrence, North Andover, North Billerica, Billerica, Westford, Dusnstable, Wilmington and North Reading.