If you are involved in an accident, whether it involved a car, motorcycle, or pedestrian accident, it can be a traumatic and life-changing experience. To ensure that you are fully compensated for your injuries and damages, it is important to keep accurate records and documentation regarding the accident. If you are involved in an accident, obtain information from the other driver(s), vehicle owners, and potential witnesses, including names and addresses. From the vehicle owners, you should obtain their insurance policy information. Other types of information you should obtain from the scene are the position of the cars, photographs of the scene, and weather and lighting conditions.
Additionally, you should report the accident to police, and obtain medical attention for yourself or anyone else who is injured due to the accident. Although you might not feel any pain immediately after the accident, sometimes the pain will manifest itself later. You should also report the accident to your insurance company.
Connecticut generally allows you two years from the date you were injured or the date you discovered the injury to file a lawsuit against the person responsible for causing the accident. To view the Connecticut General Statutes Annotated related to personal injury lawsuits, click on the following link: Connecticut General Statutes
Insurance & Medical Expenses
If you do incur medical expenses due to an accident, it is important to know that Connecticut is a "fault-based, tort liability" state. This means that insurance companies pay damages or expenses according to each party's degree of fault, and there are no restrictions on the insured's right to sue.
If you can prove that the other party was negligent, and thus responsible for the accident, you may be able to recover for your damages caused by the accident. Generally, to prove negligence, you have to prove that the party causing the injury owed a duty to exercise reasonable care, the person at fault failed to carry out that duty, the injured party suffered harm, and the other party's action caused the injury.
The amount that a party can recover by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the other party depends on the degree of fault. In Connecticut, the state operates under a system of modified comparative negligence, which means your action is barred if your negligence exceeds the combined negligence of all the defendants. In other words, the plaintiff can recover if his or her fault in causing the accident does not reach 51 percent. If the plaintiff was 50 percent or less at fault, he or she can still recover damages. However, the plaintiff's amount of recovery would be reduced by the plaintiff's proportion of fault. Thus, if the plaintiff was determined to be 30 percent at fault, the plaintiff would recover 70 percent of the claimed damage amount. To view section 52-572h of the Connecticut General Statutes Annotated, which is the statute on negligence and damages, click on the following link: 52-572h
In a suit for damages, you may be entitled to recovery of the following:
- Past, current, and future estimated medical expenses
- Lost wages, including wages lost from having to attend medical appointments
- Property damage
- Change in future earning ability due to the injury
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
Accidents are an unfortunate and often times, painful and costly aspect of life. Therefore, if you are injured due to the fault of another, you have the right to be justly compensated for the expenses you incurred and the damages you suffered due to the injury and accident. At Kenny, Brimmer and Mahoney, LLC, we have highly experienced trial attorneys who will ensure that you receive the maximum compensation you deserve. Contact us for a consultation today.