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Accident Attorneys In New Hampshire

The Haymond Law Firm

999 Asylum Ave.
Hartford, Connecticut 06105


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New Hampshire Motor Vehicle Accident Laws and Safety Requirements

Even though New Hampshire is a relatively safe place to drive compared to other states, well over 100 drivers lose their lives on New Hampshire roads every year, with many more injured. The New Hampshire legal system provides the opportunity for full legal redress for people harmed by car accidents that are the fault of another party. Some of the most important aspects of New Hampshire car accident law are outlined below:

Statute of Limitations: New Hampshire imposes a three-year deadline, beginning with the date of the accident, to file a personal injury or property loss lawsuit. You have six years from the date of the victim’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

When the Victim is Partly at Fault: New Hampshire is a modified comparative fault state. When more than one party is at fault for an accident, the court will apportion fault among the parties on a percentage basis. As long as the accident wasn’t mostly the plaintiff’s fault, the court will simply deduct the amount from the plaintiff’s damages that exactly corresponds to his percentage of fault. If he was 25 percent at fault, for example, he will receive only 75 percent of his damages. If he was more than 50 percent at fault, however, he will receive nothing.

Fault/No Fault Rule: New Hampshire is not a no-fault state – you can file a claim against a driver or his insurance company seeking money damages, without being forced to look to your own insurance coverage first.

Minimum Insurance Coverage: The legal minimum liability insurance coverage in New Hampshire is $25,000 for per victim for personal injury, $50,000 cumulative in personal injury compensation per accident, and $25,000 for property damage.

Uninsured/Underinsured Drivers Coverage: New Hampshire requires its drivers to maintain uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, both with coverage limits of no less than $25,000 per victim and $50,000 per accident.

Types of Damages Available: Full compensatory damages are available. Although punitive damages are technically not allowed, “enhanced compensatory damages” can be awarded when the defendant’s conduct is outrageous or shocking.

Product Liability for Defective Vehicles: No-fault product liability is available except against government defendants (regulatory agencies, for example).

Suing the Government over Defective Roadways (Sovereign Immunity): Claims for money damages against the New Hampshire state government are limited to $150,000 per victim and $500,000 per accident.

Motorcycle Helmet Laws: New Hampshire has no motorcycle helmet law.

Seat Belt Laws: Minors under 18 are required to wear seat belts.

Dram Shop Law: Social hosts and licensed alcohol vendors face third-party liability if they serve a minor under 21 or an obviously intoxicated adult, whose resulting intoxication then injures a third party – if a bar patron, for example, causes an injury accident on his way home.

DUI/DWI Penalties (first offense): In New Hampshire, a first-offense DUI will result in a minimum 10-day jail sentence and a $500 to $750 fine. The offender’s driver’s license will be suspended for 9 to 18 months.

Distracted Driving (texting while driving, etc.): Using hand-held electronic devices or text messaging is forbidden in New Hampshire. Drivers under 18 may not use cell phones while driving even if no hands are required to operate it.