If you’re facing an injury from an accident—such as a car accident, motorcycle accident, commercial truck accident, or slip and fall—you may need medical treatment. You may miss weeks or months of work. You may suddenly become disabled and unable to do the things you once enjoyed or even daily tasks.
An accident can change your life in a second. When you are recovering from your injuries, it’s important to have someone your side who will fight for your legal rights.
That’s where a personal injury lawyer comes in. A reputable New Hampshire injury attorney will ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.
They will do what it takes—even if it means going to trial—to make sure you are fully compensated for all your damages.
New Hampshire Personal Injury Law
If you were injured in an accident in New Hampshire, you have important legal rights.
Under the state’s laws, you may be entitled to recover substantial compensation.
To help ensure that your rights and interests are properly protected, our experienced New Hampshire personal injury lawyers offer a detailed look at some of the most important aspects of the personal injury laws in the state.
Common Examples of Personal Injury Cases
Serious injuries can occur in a wide variety of ways. While New Hampshire’s personal injury laws apply broadly, there are some special considerations that will be involved in certain types of cases.
As such, victims should always work with a top-rated personal injury lawyer who has prior experience handling claims that are similar to their own case. At Sabbeth Law, we have experience handling all types of injury cases in New Hampshire, including:
- Car accidents;
- Motorcycle collisions;
- Commercial truck accidents;
- Pedestrian accidents;
- Bicycle crashes;
- Premises liability cases;
- Workers’ compensation claims;
- Defective products claims; and
- Medical malpractice cases.
The Deadlines to File a Personal Injury Claim in New Hampshire
Under New Hampshire law, there is a three-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims. This rule applies to all claims, including medical malpractice claims and wrongful death claims.
To be clear, your personal injury lawsuit does not need to be settled within three years; instead, the claim must simply be filed within this time period.
Notably, the three-year statute of limitations clock does not always begin running on the actual date of the accident.
New Hampshire operates under a discovery of harm rule. This means that the statute of limitations will start running from the time that the victim knew or should have known about their injuries.
How to Prove Liability in New Hampshire Personal Injury Case
Personal injury claims are governed by state law. In New Hampshire, liability for a personal injury lawsuit must be established under the state’s comparative fault rules. The comparative fault legal standard has many important implications for a victim’s case. Specifically, this standard controls:
- How fault must be proven; and
- How liability is to be divided.
Fault is Based on Negligence
In most New Hampshire personal injury cases, fault must be established by proving that the defendant’s negligence, in some way, played a role in causing the victim’s injuries. In the broadest terms, negligence is defined as the failure to take proper care.
Of course, what constitutes proper care will vary based on the individual circumstances of the case, the most important factor being the legal duties that the defendant owed the victim at the time of the accident. Ultimately, to prove negligence, your New Hampshire accident lawyer will need to prove each of the following required elements:
- The extent to which the defendant owed to the victim a duty of care;
- That the duty of care was breached by the defendant;
- That the defendant’s breach duty contributed to causing the victim’s injuries; and
- That the victim sustained real damage in the accident.
Liability is Divided in a Proportionate Manner
As New Hampshire is a comparative fault state, it is important to highlight how liability is divided. In some cases, the division of liability is straightforward. For example, if a drunk driver ran through a red light, hitting a pedestrian who otherwise was safely crossing the road at a crosswalk, that driver would likely be at fault for the entirety of the crash. Therefore, they would be held liable for 100 percent of the victim’s injuries.
However in many real-world personal injury cases, dividing liability is far more complex. This is because sometimes two or more parties share the blame for the same accident. In shared liability personal injury cases, each party’s precise level of fault must be determined so that liability can be divided and assigned in a proportional manner.
A victim can even be held partially liable for their own injuries. For example, imagine that you were involved in a commercial truck accident, and you sustained $30,000 in damages in the crash. After investigation, it is determined that the trucking company is at fault for 80 percent of the crash, but that you are also to blame for 20 percent of the wreck.
In this example, you would be held liable for 20 percent of your own damages, or $6,000. Therefore, your financial recovery from the trucking company would be limited to $24,000, instead of $30,000. Clearly, the division of fault is a key factor in New Hampshire personal injury cases. If fault is disputed in your case, it is critically important that you get a qualified lawyer by your side as soon as possible.
Compensation Available for Injured Victims in New Hampshire
In New Hampshire personal injury cases, victims are legally entitled to seek compensation that is equal in value to the value of their damages. To get full compensation, victims must be able to prove their losses. Unfortunately, the defendants, often large insurance companies, are known to fight hard to limit how much injured victims can recover.
At Sabbeth Law, our team has a deep understanding of New Hampshire’s personal injury laws and vast experience with the general claims process. We can help ensure that you are able to recover the compensation that you truly deserve. In the majority of personal injury cases, a settlement is reached; though, in some cases, it becomes necessary to fight all the way through a trial. Depending on the specific nature of your claim, we can help you seek monetary relief for:
- Emergency medical expenses;
- All other medical bills;
- Physical therapy or psychological counseling;
- Incidental economic damages;
- Lost wages;
- Long-term disability;
- Pain and suffering;
- Emotional distress;
- Loss of lifestyle enjoyment; and
- Wrongful death damages.
How to Hire the Best NH Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Case
You may see or hear numerous ads for injury and accident lawyers. How do you find the right one for your case and your specific situation? Read on to find out what qualities you should look for and how to find lawyers that meet your needs.
Hire an Injury Attorney Who is Local
This may seem pretty obvious, but many law firms you see advertised on TV are actually nationwide. They vet calls from all across the country and have various lawyers take on these cases. These law firms get hundreds of clients and try to settle these cases as quickly as possible. They offer no personalized service and no local office to help. This means you may have to settle for a lowball offer.
Don’t let this happen to you. Choose a law firm that actually has experience working cases in New Hampshire. That way you can meet with the lawyer in person and can a feel for his or her personality.
Hire an Injury Lawyer Who Will Properly Value Your Claim
You should ask your lawyer how he or she will value your claim. This is an important skill that all good lawyers need to know. The right lawyer will calculate both current and future economic damages. They will also account for emotional damages. If the accident has caused a permanent disability, that will also add to your claim.
There are many calculators available to help with valuation. If your lawyer isn’t interested in helping you get the most money possible, and simply wants to hurry up and settle, find a different lawyer.
Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer with Experience Handling Your Type of Accident
Each state has different laws, but New Hampshire personal injury lawyers know the laws of that state. They know how long you have to file a claim and what your chances are of winning. They have likely dealt with hundreds or even thousands of cases similar to yours. They know what evidence to look for and how to deal with insurance companies. They can determine whether you should seek a settlement or opt for a trial. They have the various protocols down pat.
Experience is also important. There are many types of personal injury. For example, if you’ve suffered an injury in a car accident, you want an attorney experienced in those types of cases. Each type of case is different, so you want to be sure to work with an attorney who will do the best work for you.
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney Who You Like as a Person
In a sense, finding a lawyer is like finding a date. You want someone whose personality you mesh with. While you won’t be spending romantic dates with your lawyer, you will likely be spending a lot of time together over the next few months.
The lawyer you choose has an obligation to protect your legal rights. This person will need you to open up to them and tell them your side of the story so he or she can build a solid case for you. If you don’t feel comfortable with your lawyer or have a hard time communicating with them because they don’t explain their answers, it’s time to find someone new.
Hire an Injury Lawyer Who Has a History of Solid Results
You might find a lawyer who is nice and willing to work with you, but how far will that take you? You are depending on your injury attorney to get you the compensation you need. If your lawyer is so nice that he’s afraid to go to court for you, that’s a red flag. You want someone who is willing to go the extra mile for you.
Ask about recent settlements and verdicts before committing to a lawyer. If the lawyer has only a few or none at all, or the award amounts are quite small, find someone who can prove they have what it takes to help you recover compensation.
Get a Free Case Review from a New Hampshire Personal Injury Attorney Today
Our New Hampshire personal injury attorneys are standing by, ready to help. At Sabbeth Law, we serve victims throughout the Upper Valley of New Hampshire, including in Hanover, Lebanon, Enfield, Orford and Lyme. For immediate assistance with your personal injury claim, please do not hesitate to call us today at (802) 457-1112 to set up a free review of your case.