The experienced Farmington car accident lawyers of Peter Thompson & Associates can help if you have been injured in a car accident. One common difficulty in recovering damages in Maine and other states arises when a defendant asserts that the plaintiff was partially or fully to blame for a lawsuit and therefore should not be able to recover. If there is a dispute about who caused the accident, we can investigate what happened, getting help from experts in accident reconstruction and other tricky elements of your case as necessary. We can evaluate the defendant's assertions and determine how best to pursue your claims to obtain the greatest possible recovery.What is Comparative Negligence?
Each state has its own rules regarding how much a plaintiff's own negligence impacts his or her case. Maine follows the doctrine of modified comparative fault. You cannot recover any damages in Maine if a judge or jury determines that you were 50% or more responsible for the accident and ensuing damages. You can recover if you are 49% or less at fault at fault in the accident. However, your recovery in that case will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
Suppose, for example, you are speeding a few miles over the speed limit. Another car runs a red light and hits your car in a T-bone collision, leaving you with very serious injuries, including medical bills that total more than $100,000. The defendant may assert that you are partially at fault because you were speeding. The jury will evaluate all the evidence, determine the amount of damages and allocate both your percentage of fault and the defendant's.
If the breakdown is that you are 15% at fault for speeding and the defendant is otherwise responsible for the accident, you can recover. This means that if the jury awards $200,000 in damages, you can recover $170,000 of that.What Damages May Be Recovered?
How does the jury come up with the damage award? Your attorney will present evidence about all that you have suffered and lost as a result of the accident. This includes medical expenses, out-of-pocket expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, the cost of household services you are no longer able to perform, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
Some of these damages can be proved by presenting bills, but others will require more investigation. For example, you may need to present evidence that you used to do particular activities that you are not able to do anymore because of your injuries from the accident. A skillful attorney may also retain economists or accident reconstruction experts if their expertise could help you prove some aspect of your case or make sure you are not barred from recovering by the comparative negligence rule.Consult Diligent Farmington Car Accident Attorneys
An experienced Farmington car accident attorney will build up a strong and sound case on your behalf. Although Maine has a 6-year statute of limitations, most insurers and attorneys would prefer to investigate the facts of a case immediately following the accident. Since some evidence—including eyewitness testimony—may not remain intact for long periods of time, it is crucial to make sure you consult and retain an attorney as soon as you become aware you may have a claim. Contact Peter Thompson & Associates at 1.800.804.2004 or via our online form for a free consultation.