Newark Fender Bender Attorney
Hire an Experienced Newark Fender Bender Attorney
We have all heard the term “fender bender” before. The term is often associated with less serious car accidents where the fender of a vehicle gets slightly bent or damaged. The fender, of course, is a cover that protects the wheel well from outside debris. When the front of one vehicle collides with the back of another vehicle, it causes the front fender of the first vehicle and the back fender of the second vehicle to get damaged. The “fender bender” term makes it sound like the fenders are only bent, but the damage can be more significant in these types of accidents. It all depends on how fast the at-fault driver was going.
If you have been involved in a fender bender accident, you are entitled to compensatory damages for any injuries that you have endured. Even if your injuries are not too severe, you could still sue the at-fault driver if they were negligent behind the wheel. Our experienced Newark fender bender attorneys specialize in helping fender bender accident victims seek both compensatory and punitive damages in a court of law. This will not only cover the medical expenses that you have been left with, but it will give you additional compensation for the pain and suffering that you experienced as well. Give us a call at 201-798-8000 to see what we can do for you.
Contact Our Newark Office
One Gateway Center, Suite 2600
Newark, NJ 07201
The “No-Fault” Insurance System in New Jersey
There are a few states that have a no-fault insurance system and New Jersey just happens to be one of them. This system requires accident victims to seek compensation for their medical expenses from their insurance provider before anyone else. For instance, let’s say you’ve been involved in a fender bender accident that was caused by another driver and you sustained a shoulder injury from it. You cannot run out immediately and file a lawsuit against that driver for compensatory damages. The law requires you to seek coverage from the personal injury protection of your insurance policy first. Once you have maxed out that coverage, you could possibly pursue legal action against the driver if you still have more medical bills to pay.
Your legal ability to file a lawsuit will depend on whether you have a basic or standard insurance policy. The basic is a cheaper policy which only provides up to $15,000 in personal injury protection for most injuries. You’d have to be severely injured with a permanent disability to receive any more money from the insurance. You have a limited right to sue under the basic policy too. The law states that under a basic policy, you can only sue the at-fault driver if your injuries are permanent. All other injuries are not covered. As for the standard insurance policy, you have an unlimited right to sue for any type of injury you’ve sustained. You also get up to $250,000 in personal injury protection from your insurance provider.
New Jersey Modified Comparative Negligence Standard
New Jersey has a law called the Modified Comparative Negligence Standard which pertains to cases involving personal injuries. It states that any personal injury victim who is found to be 50% or less responsible for the accident is entitled to compensation. But if the victim is over 50% responsible for the accident, they will not be able to receive any compensation for their injuries. For example, if you are involved in a fender bender accident and the other driver is declared to be 70% responsible, they must pay you 70% of whatever your medical expenses are. If your expenses add up to $200,000, the driver must pay you $140,000 in compensatory damages. However, if they are found to be just 40% responsible for the accident, they don’t have to pay you any compensation.
You’re probably wondering, who determines the percentage of responsibility for each driver? That is up to the civil jury which hears the case in court. As the victim, you will be the plaintiff in the case and the driver who you believe caused the accident will be the defendant. After the facts of the case are presented to the jury, they will decide how much at fault you both were. If the evidence shows that you drove responsibility and did nothing to provoke the fender-bender accident, then you should be declared 0% responsible. In that case, you would be entitled to 100% in compensatory damages.
Also, if the other driver was proven to be negligent in their driving, you could pursue punitive damages from them too. This could equal whatever your compensatory damages were multiplied by five. If you were awarded $200,000 in compensatory damages, the punitive damages could be as much as $1 million.
Contact a Newark Fender Bender Attorney
As a victim of a fender bender accident, you may be confused about what your rights are. So many accident victims fail to seek compensation from the at-fault driver because they feel like the insurance companies should deal with it. But you cannot trust insurance companies to always pay you the maximum coverage under your insurance policy. Furthermore, the other driver’s insurance coverage may not agree to compensate you for your injuries either. In this case, you only have one option and that is to hire a Newark fender bender attorney that will represent you in this matter.
If you call 201-798-8000 to request a free consultation, you will get to meet one of our Newark fender bender attorneys that is experienced in these matters. We will review all your insurance information as well as the police and medical reports related to the fender bender accident. Once we have analyzed all the facts of the case, we can recommend the best way for you to move forward. If the evidence shows that your injuries were the result of the other driver’s negligence, we can pursue a civil case on your behalf so that you can be compensated for your pain and suffering. But even if you feel like you were partially responsible, let us review your case for free anyway. You may still be entitled to some compensation that you may not even realize.