Connecticut Car Accident Introduction
Connecticut is a state by the sea, and this is noticeable throughout the state. Sailing and other aquatic activities are popular, and the town of Mystic is famous for its Seaport museum documenting the history of seafaring. Connecticut (more specifically, the town of New Haven) is home to the Ivy League Yale University as well as the acclaimed Peabody Museum of Natural History. All this is available to the 3.5 million people who all Connecticut home as well as those who choose to visit the state.
Residents to Connecticut and visitors to the state should always keep in mind that car crashes can occur in Connecticut and elsewhere without a moment’s notice. In the aftermath of an injury car accident, there may not be enough time for an injury victim to think about what he or she should do next. That is why it is important to prepare ahead of time and learn what steps one should take after being injured or having a loved one killed in a traffic crash.
Car Crashes in Connecticut
The federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) maintains records on the number of fatal accidents that occur in every state each and every year. These statistics are used by NHTSA to make policy recommendations to state and national leaders as well as to inform the public about the danger car crashes pose to the general public. NHTSA reports the following statistics for Connecticut from 2015:
- In that year, a total of 266 people lost their lives in fatal Connecticut car crashes;
- This number represented an increase over the number of fatalities in 2014 (wherein 248 people were killed in roadway collisions);
- The vast majority of fatal collisions take place in urban areas as opposed to rural areas;
- Speed or alcohol consumption played a role in a total of 176 fatalities.
Although these numbers are dwarfed by the number of fatalities in other, larger states, these numbers are a cause for concern for the small state of Connecticut. As the NHTSA statistics suggest, many fatalities (and, by extension, injury incidents) can be attributed to a careless or reckless decision by one or more people involved in the crash. Reducing the number of car crash injuries and fatalities begins by helping Connecticut drivers understand that their careless and negligent decisions to text and drive, drink and drive, or disobey traffic laws contributes directly to the number of injuries and fatalities in the state.
Connecticut is a “Fault-Based” Insurance State
Connecticut requires motorists who live in the state to obtain sufficient “fault based” insurance coverage before driving in the event they cause a car crash that injures or kills another. The coverage is considered “fault based” because before an insurance company will pay the claim of an injured party, the insurance company will need to ascertain that its insured client is responsible for causing the crash and the resulting injuries. If the insured client is not responsible for the crash (or, at least, the insurance company does not believe its insured is responsible for the crash), then the insurance company is not likely to pay the claim submitted by the injured party.
Fault-based insurance states typically allow injured parties who either have their claims for compensation denied or who are unable to obtain sufficient compensation from the insured’s insurance carrier to file a claim for compensation and pursue monetary damages from the at-fault party. Fault is important here, too, as Connecticut law will not permit an injury victim to obtain any compensation if it is shown that the injury victim was more than 50 percent at fault in causing the crash. If the victim is partly to blame for the crash but his or her responsibility is less than 51 percent, any compensation award received by the victim will be reduced in proportion to the amount of fault attributable to the victim.
Connecticut Statute of Limitations in Car Crash Cases
Car crash lawsuits in Connecticut must be filed before the expiration of the statute of limitations, which is two years. This does not give injury victims much time to investigate their cases and determine what course of action they are going to pursue in order to obtain monetary damages for their losses. If a case is filed after the statute of limitations period has passed, a court is empowered to dismiss the case and the victim will receive nothing. Injury victims should, therefore, ensure their car crash lawsuits are timely filed.
A Car Accident Lawyer in Delaware is Available to Assist You
Contact Stern Law, PLLC today if you or a loved one were injured in a car crash incident. We will help you understand your rights and what you must do to preserve your ability to obtain compensation. Contact Stern Law, PLLC today at (844) 808-7529.