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How Shared Blame Affects New Mexico Car Accident Lawsuits

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Q: Can I sue for damages in a car accident if I was partially to blame?

New Mexico car accident attorneys can help seriously injured victims recover damages, even if they were partially to blame for the car accident. 

What do car accident attorneys do for accident victims? 

The shock, pain, and disruption to life experienced by car accident victims brings physical, emotional, and financial burdens that may last a lifetime. Car accident attorneys are advocates for victims and in addition to explaining the law to them, they can provide the following assistance: 

  • preserve evidence and interview witnesses in an effort to establish liability
  • ensure victims receive proper medical care
  • help victims document injuries and access necessary medical records to strengthen their case for compensation
  • negotiate a fair settlement with insurance companies that addresses all future medical and financial needs
  • aggressively litigate to obtain generous compensation awards if the settlement is not possible.

New Mexico personal injury lawsuits arise where the victim is seriously injured by the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions or inactions of another person or entity. If the victim dies as a result of injuries sustained in the accident, a wrongful death lawsuit may be appropriate by the victims closest surviving relatives.

While circumstances differ on a case-by-case basis, victims may be entitled to compensation for current and future medical expenses, current and future lost wages or diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and property damage. 

A personal injury attorney knows how to evaluate a claim to assure the victim receives the maximum compensation possible, so it’s advisable not to accept a settlement offer without legal representation. It’s in an insurance company’s best interest to offer a low-ball initial settlement, but attorneys routinely negotiate substantially higher settlements above the initial one.

Can a car accident victim collect damages if they were also at fault? 

State laws differ but in New Mexico, the answer is “yes”. As a pure comparative negligence state, New Mexico car accident victims can still recover damages even if they were partially responsible for the accident – but the amount of their award will be reduced according to their share of negligence as indicated by a percentage determined by a jury or judge. That means, if a jury or judge awards a victim $100,000 but assigns the victim 10% of the blame, the victim’s award would be reduced by $10,000 leaving a total award of $90,000. 

If you or a loved one has been injured, or a loved one has been killed, in a car accident or any other accident as a result of someone else’s negligence, the Hunt Law Firm can help maximize the compensation to which you may be entitled. Contact us today for a free consultation. 

From our office in Santa Fe, we have been providing injured victims and their families throughout New Mexico with compassion, personal attention, and powerful legal representation for nearly 20 years.