Fault in Massachusetts Car Accidents
Involvement in an accident is an unpleasant experience, mainly if the accident took place due to the negligence of other drivers.
In Massachusetts there is a no-fault insurance law. This law stipulates that you can be held responsible for a crash if it is believed that you are at fault for it. If you are involved in a car accident, your motor insurance will cover lost wages and medical expenses up to a certain amount, regardless of the person who caused the accident.
Theoretically, your insurance company is expected to pay your accident-related expenses and lost income without any need for you to prove fault on the other driver. However, you can still sue the other driver for personal injury claims when you meet the Massachusetts tort threshold.
A fault is an issue in Massachusetts if you meet the tort threshold, and you can sue the other driver to recover all the losses incurred and injuries suffered. The state uses a modified comparative negligence system in allocating fault. This implies that you can be paid for damages if it is established that you are less than 51 percent at fault in the crash. If you are 1 percent at fault, you will recover nothing, and if you are not at fault, your recovery entitlement is 100 percent.
Therefore, it is vital to collect and preserve evidence following a car accident in Massachusetts. If you are eligible, you need to prove that it was the other driver who was negligent and that you were at a minimum fault.
Before the presentation of the claim to a jury, it is first shown to the insurance firm of the driver at-fault. If you and your Boston car accident lawyer can convince the other driver’s insurance firm that it is their client who was at fault, then the entity chooses to make an out of court settlement. If the insurance firm disputes which is at fault or the amount to be paid as damages, then you must present the legal claim to a jury for determination.
There are different kinds of evidence that helps in proving fault in a car accident:
Having the names and contact details of witnesses is very important in proving fault. The witnesses give valuable testimony about the incident.
The report shows whether the other driver has been mentioned by the police for any violations. At times, the reporting officer leaves an opinion on who caused the accident. The opinion is crucial in negotiating for settlement with the other driver’s insurance company. However, a police officer’s opinion is inadmissible as evidence in a suit.
It is important to take pictures of the incident from different angles. The photos help in preserving the appearance of the road in case any changes are made in the future. Also, they provide evidence of the visibility and site lines. When you take pictures of the damaged vehicle, it can help in proving the location of the impact between cars.
The basis of belief of the site of the accident and the motor vehicles can help in a situation whereby the Boston car accident lawyer must hire an expert to put together the chronology of events and give an opinion of how the accident took place.
If you are involved in an accident in Boston, you could file a suit to receive compensation if the other driver collides with a parked vehicle, fails to signal before turning, or operates in the wrong direction. Also, the other driver is deemed to be at fault if he or she collides with your vehicle while backing up or fails to continue with due caution from a traffic control sign.