Personal Injury Lawyer in Massachusetts
According to the CDC, in 2014 almost 40 million people were injured so severely, they required medical attention. Across the country, these victims and their families are too often taken advantage of by the lawyers of insurance companies, landowners, or businesses who will do anything to escape their responsibility for causing the injury.
No personal injury victim should have to go through this alone. More importantly, if you are the victim of an accident, you should never try to settle a claim without representation.
Snook Law Office Will Fight for Your Recovery
Attorney Douglas Snook, a highly skilled and experienced personal injury lawyer in Massachusetts, has developed a solid reputation in the state for his aggressive and knowledgeable litigation skills.
In personal injury cases, insurance companies most often deny recovery or attempt to offer victims unreasonably low settlements and pressure them to accept it. Attorney Snook understands these struggles that victims face. Although he is often able to obtain compensation for his clients without having to go to court, he is prepared to take cases through to trial to fight for the recovery you deserve.
You Don't Pay Unless We Win
Attorney Snook does not charge his personal clients on an hourly basis. Instead, our office will only charge our clients a percentage of what we recover for them. This fee structure will help reduce stress so that you can focus on recovery.
Visit Our Personal Injury Practice Pages
Motorcycle accident claims often involve debilitating or sometimes fatal injuries. Snook law can help combat unfair biases against motorcyclists and recover a fair settlement.
Motor vehicle accidents are the most common personal injury cases. Attorney Snook is highly skilled in vehicular claims and litigation.
The more serious the injuries, the more consequences that result. If retained, our office will help negotiate a settlement that protects your future interests.
Proving liability in slip and fall cases is notoriously more complicated than other personal injury practices. If retained, Snook Law will analyze your case and advise you on your best course of action.
Our office is well prepared to counsel families through what is likely the most difficult time in their life.
Personal Injury Basics
What is Personal Injury Law?
Personal Injury law concerns physical and emotional injuries that someone has suffered as a result of the wrongful conduct or negligence of another person or entity. Wrongful conduct can be criminal wrongdoing such as assault and battery, or the acts of a company that markets and promotes a product that it knows can cause serious side effects without warning anyone of the risks. Negligence is careless or reckless conduct that led to an injury.
Most personal injury claims involve negligence or instances where the responsible party failed to act reasonably or to a certain standard of care concerning the injured party, such as a pedestrian, bicyclist, another motorist, a consumer, or patient.
Certain elements must be proven by the injured claimant, or plaintiff in a lawsuit, by the civil standard of proof by a preponderance of the evidence or that it is more likely than not that the particular element has been proven.
The elements of a negligence claim are:
The defendant owed a duty of care to the injured party (e.g., to exercise ordinary care)
The defendant’s conduct breached the duty of care (by careless or negligent conduct)
The breach was the legal cause of the injured party’s injuries
The injured party suffered damage
Personal injury lawyers specialize in both recovering damages for injured parties and defending parties against personal injury claims.
Types of Personal Injury Claims
Personal injury includes the following types of accident claims:
How Do I File a Personal Injury Claim?
You can file a claim with the insurance company of any insured party responsible for the injury. In most cases, a personal injury lawyer will be able to settle the claim with the insurance company without having to engage in formal litigation.
Uninsured or Underinsured Parties
In some cases, parties may be either uninsured or underinsured. In the case of uninsured parties, recovery may be achieved in other ways, including seizure of personal assets. Parties may also have insurance, but not enough to cover the injured party’s damages. Personal injury lawyers will counsel their clients on how to move forward in such clients.
Attorney Snook has helped countless clients recover fair personal injury claims against people and companies who are either uninsured or underinsured.
How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Claim?
In Massachusetts, injured parties have three (3) years from the date of the accident or incident to settle their claim or to file a complaint in the appropriate court. Failure to file it before this time will generally bar you from recovering any compensation from the responsible party. In law, this deadline is called the “statute of limitations.”
Exceptions to the statute of limitations for personal injury cases are very rare and difficult to prove. It’s important to file a claim as soon as you become aware of your injury.
Damages in a Personal Injury Case
Damages in a personal injury case can include:
Past and Future Medical Expenses
Medical expenses must be reasonable and related to the care of the claimant and are proved through medical records and bills, and the testimony of treating medical providers. Loss of income is shown through wage records.
Past and Future Income Loss
If the injured party loses earning capacity due to the personal injury, a forensic economist may be retained to prove the value of the loss.
Emotional stress can be demonstrated by medical and therapist records where a claimant may be exhibiting post-traumatic stress disorder, a drug addiction, or other mental pathology related to the trauma of the accident.
Pain and Suffering
The highest damage awards are usually for pain and suffering, which can also include the degree to which the injured party’s enjoyment of life has been diminished.
Spousal Claims for Loss of Consortium
In many personal injury cases, an injured person’s spouse can recover damages from the loss of consortium. Loss of consortium is the “deprivation of the benefits of a family relationship.” This can include affection, love, sexual relations, companionship, among other benefits.
Any award for personal injury depends on the nature and extent of the claimant’s injuries, the damages sustained, and the effect on the claimant’s life. Your personal injury lawyer’s experience and knowledge are instrumental in proving all the elements of a personal injury case including damages so that you have the best opportunity for obtaining the most compensation available.