The facts behind common auto accident myths

Blogs from July, 2020

Attorney Mark Rufo PC

It can be difficult to determine the best course of action after an auto accident injury. This is especially true because of the rampant misinformation about getting financial compensation for the costs of this type of injury. 

Before accepting an insurance company settlement, learn the facts behind these common myths about handling the aftermath of an auto accident. 

Myth: You cannot seek damages if you shared fault 

Actually, New Hampshire abides by a modified comparative negligence structure for auto accidents. If a judge or jury determines your fault percentage in an accident is less than 50%, you can recover damages minus your fault percentage. For example, if your settlement is $50,000 and you had 20% fault for the accident, you would actually receive $40,000 in the lawsuit. 

Myth: You can sue for car crash injuries at any point 

The New Hampshire statute of limitations applies to auto accident cases involving personal injury. If you want to sue another driver for his or her involvement in the crash, you must do so within three years of the accident date. If the defendant is a government employee, your deadline is just two years from the accident date. 

Myth: New Hampshire requires car insurance 

While other states have penalties for uninsured drivers, New Hampshire does not require its motorists to have an auto insurance policy. However, certain drivers must show proof of insurance, including individuals who have a history of: 

  • Driving while intoxicated 
  • Reckless operation 
  • Poor conduct after an accident 
  • Leaving the scene of an accident 

If a driver has insurance and causes an accident in which you suffer an injury, you can file a claim for damages with his or her insurance policy. If the driver does not have insurance, you can bring legal action against him or her to cover your expenses in this situation. 

Myth: If you sue, you have to go to court 

In fact, many personal injury lawsuits end in a negotiated settlement rather than litigation. However, you should not sign any offer from an attorney or insurance company unless it covers the full extent of damages from the accident. 

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