Boston Head-on Collisions
Head-on collisions are incredibly frightening. Not only do these accidents leave victims having to deal with catastrophic injuries and debilitating pain, but they also leave victims with extensive medical bills that they simply cannot afford.
If you are in a head-on accident in Boston, you should not have to deal with these terrifying repercussions on your own. You deserve justice for the harm you endured and financial recovery for your injuries. Fortunately, when you work with an experienced car accident attorney, you do not have to figure out how to pursue this compensation yourself. These lawyers are here for you, ready to make your voice heard and fight for the money you are entitled to.
What Happens After a Head-On Collision?
Even though any motor vehicle accident can result in serious injuries, head-on crashes are more likely to lead to devastating harm and fatalities to passengers and motorists in either vehicle. In fact, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) indicates there is a 57 percent rate of fatality for those involved in a head-on collision.
Leading Causes of Head-On Collisions in Boston
There are many reasons a head-on collision can occur, such as a power steering outage or even a brake failure.
Yet, in general, most of these head-on collisions involve a motorist driving on the wrong side of the road because of:
- Distracted driving such as eating and driving, texting while driving, or talking on the phone while driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Unsafe passing
- Fatigued driving
- Poor weather or low visibility
- Ignoring traffic signals and signs
- Some other type of confusion that occurs behind the wheel, for instance, when an elderly individual accidentally enters a road or highway in the wrong direction
If you were injured in a head-on collision, do not wait to get legal help. It is often quite hard to figure out who was at fault for your accident. However, when you have an experienced car accident attorney on your side, they can determine not only what happened and who was at fault for your injuries but also go after all those responsible for maximum compensation.
Common Injuries Resulting from a Boston Head-on Collision
Head-on collisions are known to cause extensive damage. Typically, the most obvious damage is the destruction of your car.
However, these car collisions can also result in serious harm to virtually any part of your body, including:
- Head and neck injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Internal bleeding
- Internal organ damage
- Broken or fractured bones
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Obtaining Compensation Following a Boston Head-On Collision
Massachusetts is a no-fault state. Meaning that if you are involved in a car accident, your own insurance coverage pays for your medical treatments and other out-of-pocket expenses up to a certain limit, regardless of who was at fault for the crash. However, under this no-fault claim, you cannot get compensated for any non-monetary damages stemming from the accident unless you can step outside the no-fault system and pursue a third-party lawsuit or insurance claim against the liable motorist.
In Massachusetts, for an injured individual to hold another motorist or their insurance company liable for a head-on collision accident:
- The injured party must have incurred at least $2,000 in reasonable medical expenses and/or
- The injuries from the crash resulted in severe and permanent disfigurement, substantial loss of sight or hearing, and bone fractures
Once you meet this threshold, you can hold the at-fault motorist accountable for your accident by pursuing a car accident lawsuit or a third-party insurance claim against them and seek compensation for all of your losses, including pain and suffering and other non-economic damages.
How to Prove Another Party Caused Your Head-On Collision
To obtain financial relief from a third party, you must first establish that the other motorist was responsible for your head-on collision. To do this, you need to show that the party’s negligent or intentional actions caused the crash.
Generally, to prove negligence, you need to establish the following elements:
- The liable party owed you a duty of care: Every motorist has a legal obligation to avoid causing harm to others. This includes remaining sober, alert, and paying attention when driving. If a motorist decides not to abide by these obligations and, for instance, is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they are not exercising their duty of care.
- The liable party was negligent: When a driver breaches their duty of care, their actions can be found negligent. Typically, a motorist is negligent if their conduct falls outside of what is expected from a reasonable person. This means that if the individual was driving at excessive speeds, running through red lights, or driving the wrong way, they can be found negligent.
- Damages were a direct and proximate cause of the breach: To bring an injury claim, the victim must show that their injuries were a direct and proximate cause of the liable party’s actions. For instance, the injured party could show that they would not have suffered a traumatic brain injury but for the liable party swerving into their car head-on and causing the collision.
When you are involved in a car accident, the crash’s impact can make it incredibly hard to know immediately what happened and who caused the crash. However, when you work with an experienced car accident attorney, you do not have to try to figure out this liability on your own. These lawyers can retain experts such as accident reconstruction specialists who can recreate the collision to determine the cause of the accident and who was responsible.
What Damages Can You Collect Following a Head-On Collision in Boston?
If you can pursue a third-party lawsuit for the injuries you suffered in a head-on collision, you may be entitled to certain types of compensation, including economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic damages: These damages involve actual and verifiable losses that result from the accident, including:
- Medical bills including past, present, and future medical expenses such as doctor visits, hospital stay, surgeries, and medications
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- At-home nursing care
- Replacement services such as child care services or grocery shopping services
- Personal property damages
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
Non-economic damages: These damages involve rather subjective losses that are difficult to quantify, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life and activities
- Loss of a limb
- Loss of reputation
- Scarring and disfigurement
Punitive damages: Unlike the other two compensatory damages, which compensate the victim for their losses, punitive damages punish the victim for their actions and deter them and others from committing this act again in the future. However, in Massachusetts, these punitive damages are not available in most car accident cases. They are only awarded when a corporation or person’s gross negligence or willful or wanton conduct caused a death.
Actions to Take Following a Boston Head-On Collision
The scene following a car accident is often incredibly taxing, overwhelming, and stressful. However, it is essential to realize that the actions you take following this horrific collision are not only incredibly important to your health and safety but your legal rights as well. That is why if you are ever involved in a head-on collision, take the following steps:
After a head-on collision, you must contact 911 immediately. This is the fastest way to get your accident on record and to notify emergency medical services that you or someone at the scene needs prompt medical attention. Additionally, once the police arrive, they will investigate the accident and write down their findings in their police report. If you decide to bring an injury claim, this report will provide you with necessary information regarding what happened and who was at fault.
Get Medical Help
Even if you do not think that you need immediate medical services, you still must get checked over by a doctor. Quite frequently, severe and often deadly injuries such as brain trauma can remain hidden for a few days to even weeks before it manifests. Yet, the longer you wait to get treatment, the more fatal this injury can become. That is why you must get examined by a doctor immediately after your head-on accident.
Besides, getting your injuries on record can be incredibly vital for your claim. The insurance company will try to find anything they can to deny your claim. By not getting immediate medical attention, the insurance company will argue that your injuries are not that serious or are due to a pre-existing condition.
Fortunately, if you visit your physician immediately after the accident, they can document your injuries in their medical report and provide a direct link between the harm you endured and the accident.
If the area is safe, make sure to collect as much evidence from the accident scene as you can. This should include photos and videos of the crash, the vehicles involved, the position of these vehicles, your visible injuries, any skid marks on the road, the weather conditions at the time of the accident, signs near the accident, road defects, and any other evidence that can show what happened and who was at fault.
Exchange Driver Information
You will need to obtain information from every driver involved in the crash, including their names, numbers, insurance information, and driver’s license numbers.
Get Witness Details
If witnesses are present at the accident scene, make sure to get their name and contact information. Witness statements can provide you with invaluable evidence regarding the accident and also help substantiate your claims. However, if these witnesses do not want to offer you their details, do not force them. Once you retain an experienced car accident lawyer, they can gather this information for you.
Be Careful What You Say
As you talk to the people at the scene, you will want to watch what you say. Do not make any definitive statements regarding the accident, take the blame for anything that happened, or apologize. These types of statements can end up coming back and hurting your claim and the amount of money you can receive. In addition, stay off social media and do not discuss the accident online or in any forums. These posts can provide the defense team with information and details they can use against you.
Keep a Journal
Memories of a car crash will fade over time. Fortunately, when you write down details regarding the incident in a journal, you can make sure that critical facts are preserved. That is why you will want to jot down everything that happened, including how you feel, the extent of your pain and suffering, the medical treatments you now need, and how this incident changed your life.
Consult an Experienced Boston Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer
Car accident claims are incredibly confusing, complicated, and tedious. If you have been harmed in a head-on collision, you are already going through a lot. You should not have to worry about tackling these complex legal issues on your own. However, when you contact an experienced Boston car accident attorney, you will not have to. These lawyers can take care of this complex legal process for you by investigating what happened, gathering critical evidence to show fault and damages, and pursuing maximum compensation on your behalf.
The dedicated, experienced Boston personal injury lawyers at Sibley Dolman Gipe can guide you through all of the above processes and more as we work zealously to protect your rights and recover the compensation you need. You can easily reach Sibley Dolman Gipe at 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH) or contact us online.
Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
76 Canal Street, Suite 302
Boston, MA 02114