Auto Accident Law in New Hampshire

Auto accident law in New Hampshire is a complex affair, just as it is in every other state. When it comes to personal injuries caused by car accidents, there's a lot of information to keep track of. In the event of an injurious car accident, it's imperative that you understand what you're entitled to and what your rights are.

What is Add-on No-Fault Coverage?

New Hampshire is one of only a handful of states that uses "add-on" no-fault coverage. No-fault coverage in other states is designed to prevent litigation by requiring insurance companies to pay most accident related costs promptly, regardless of who is at fault in an accident. Under auto accident law in New Hampshire things are a little different. If a person opts to have optional no-fault coverage, they are granted personal injury protection, regardless of fault, in an accident. However, unlike in regular no-fault states, they can still sue, and be sued, for personal injuries caused by car accidents.

What Modified Comparative Fault Means

However, filing a lawsuit isn't that cut and dried. A regulation referred to as Modified Comparative Fault puts some restrictions on how lawsuits work. Auto accident law in New Hampshire states that so long as a person bears 50% or less of the responsibility for an accident, they can sue to collect damages. This means that even if the injured person is equally responsible for the accident (that means both parties were 50% at fault), a lawsuit can still be filed.

Reduced Damages Awarded

Another part of this clause states that the damages awarded to a person are modified by their percentage of fault in the accident. As an example, consider two drivers, Driver A and Driver B. The two get in an accident, and Driver B severely injured. Driver B is ruled to be 30% at fault, meaning he can file a lawsuit. He's awarded $20,000 in damages, but can only receive $14,000 - 30% of the damages are lost due to his percentage of fault.

Even if you opt for add-on no-fault coverage, auto accident law in New Hampshire still leaves you susceptible to a lawsuit - or able to file one. In the event of a severe injury or death caused by an accident, it's recommended that you retain an attorney to handle your case. A skilled law professional can win you the settlement you deserve if you've been injured, or ensure that you're not cleaned out in the event that you've injured another party.