Frequent Questions on Workers’ Compensation, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Construction Accidents, and More
We have answered a lot of questions over the years, and want all injury victims to have the benefit of our experience. Browse our FAQ page to find answers on construction accidents, car crashes, work accidents, and wrongful death.
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How do I Know if I Have a Personal Injury Case from my Car Accident?
Some people who are in a car accident are not sure whether they have a personal injury case or not. There are a number of things that must be examined, but the list below is a good start to determining whether you have a personal injury case or not.
A personal injury case from a car accident is a bodily injury claim for the injuries and losses you suffered in the crash. In the case or claim you will be seeking financial compensation for the injuries and damages you suffered as a result fo the crash.
In Massachusetts, generally, you would have a personal injury case if:
- Obviously, you were in a motor vehicle accident either as a driver or passenger;
- You were injured or hurt in the accident;
- The driver of the other car or someone else was at fault for causing the accident;
- The other driver’s negligence in causing the accident was the cause of your injuries;
- You have incurred reasonable and necessary medical expenses in excess of $2,000 or the accident causes death, loss of a body member, results in permanent or serious disfigurement, or results in loss of sight or hearing.
There are other matters that must be considered, such as whether the other driver’s auto insurance policy applies to the accident. Each case is different and must be evaluated based upon the specific facts and circumstances of each accident. The best way to be certain that you have a personal injury case from a car accident is to speak with an experienced car accident attorney.
Speak With An Experienced Attorney Today
If you, or someone you know, have been injured in a motor vehicle accident and you are not sure whether you have a personal injury claim or not, speak with an experienced injury attorney. Mahaney & Pappas, LLP specializes in personal injury law, including bodily injury claims from car accidents. We have represented numerous people hurt in accidents all over Massachusetts and have the experience and qualifications to help you.
Call us at (508) 879-3500 or contact us online to schedule your free, no-obligation meeting and case evaluation. At our meeting we will explain your legal rights and options, evaluate your case and answer all of your questions.
Will I Need to Go To Court For My Car Accident Case?
Before this question is answered we must clarify one thing. When clients ask us this type of question, we usually need to get more specific about what “going to court” really means. When some people say “go to court” they mean whether or not they will actually need to go to the court and testify. Others use it to describe whether a lawsuit will need to be filed. Either way, the short answer to this frequently asked question is “No”. But, each accident case is different.
Most personal injury claims from motor vehicle accidents in Massachusetts are settled with the auto insurance company before you ever need to file a lawsuit or go to court. In other accidents, there may be issues that may result in the injured party needing to file a lawsuit and possibly go to court.
There are a number of different factors in each accident case that will determine whether you need to go to court or not. It is probably better explained by way of examples:
Example 1: We recently represented a young woman, who suffered a neck and back injury in a car crash in Medway, MA. This client was stopped at a red light and was rear-ended by another car. Our client suffered a bulged disc in her cervical spine (neck) and a herniated disc in her lumbar spine (lower back). Because liability was reasonably clear (i.e., the other driver was clearly at fault and his auto insurance company accepted that he was negligent) we were able to settle this personal injury claim without the need to file a lawsuit or ever go to court.
Example 2: In another case, however, our client was driving in Newton, MA and as he proceeded through an intersection, another car took a left hand turn directly in front of him. Our client ended up colliding with the other car and suffered a fractured arm in the accident. The other driver’s auto insurance company denied liability and argued that our client was at fault for causing the accident. In this situation, we needed to file a lawsuit against the other driver. Following the discovery process of a Massachusetts personal injury lawsuit, evidence was obtained that supported our client’s version of how the accident happened and we were able to settle the case before our client ever needed to go to court. So, in this example, we needed to file a lawsuit, but our client did not need to actually go to court to testify at a trial.
As you can see, there are different scenarios that will dictate whether you will need to go to court or not in order to resolve your personal injury claim. In order to be certain whether you will need to file a lawsuit or go to court, you should consult with an experienced Massachusetts accident attorney.
Speak With An Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you have been hurt in an accident in Massachusetts and you are not sure whether you will need to go to court or not, you should consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. This will get you answers to your questions, general information about accident cases and advice on the appropriate and necessary legal steps to take.
At Mahaney & Pappas, LLP, we offer complementary initial meetings where we will review your case, answer your questions, and explain your rights and legal options. To speak with someone on our legal team or to schedule your meeting, please call (508) 879-3500 or contact us online.
Should I Release my Medical Records to the Other Ins Co?
After a motor vehicle accident you can count on the other driver's insurance company calling you and mailing you documents to sign and return. One of the documents will be an Authorization to Release your Medical Records. A question we hear often is: "Should I sign the Medical Records Release that the insurance company mailed me?" The simple answer is NO.
The other driver's insurance company will, without question, try to contact you soon after the accident. They will call you in order to try and get a statement from you. They will also mail you letters with documents, including a Medical Records Release or Authorization to Release Medical Records, for you to sign and return to them. They do this quickly after an accident in hopes of getting the injured party to give them a statement and sign the Release before he or she speaks with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Why? Because they know that if you speak with a qualified and experienced accident attorney first, you will be advised not sign and return the Release and not to give the other driver's insurance company a statement.
The reason they want you to sign the Release is so they can obtain all your past medical records. A Release with no time limitations will allow the other driver's insurance company to obtain any and all of your medical records. They do this so they can dig into your private life for evidence of similar injuries or complaints to downplay the extent of the injuries sustained from the car accident or claim that the injuries you suffered in the accident were pre-existing. With prior medical records, they hope to create an issue with regard to your injuries in order to offer you less money in the end and save money for their insurance company.
Have you Been Injured in a Motor Vehicle Accident in Massachusetts?
When is the best time to hire a car accident lawyer?
The best time to hire an attorney in any case is immediately. In accident cases, the sooner your attorney can start gathering evidence and obtain witness statements the better chance of success in your case. Cases are won or lost on evidence. In addition, there are time limits to file cases after an accident or being injured. You must act quickly to preserve your rights.
After a car accident, an experienced personal injury lawyer can also work with your insurance company to coordinate the payment of your medical bills and help get you lost wages if you are unable to work because of your injuries.
Also, an experienced injury attorney will help protect you from making mistakes early on that can ruin a personal injury claim. Protect yourself and hire (or at least speak with) an experienced personal injury lawyer right away.
Have you Been Hurt in an Accident?