Snow and Ice Accidents
The weather is a force beyond our control, but a careful response to potentially hazardous weather conditions is critical. Business owners need to take appropriate measures to keep their property in a reasonably safe condition for customers. Motorists need to drive in a manner that takes into consideration the challenges that come with winter weather conditions like snow and ice. Even governmental entities need to make decisions in a way that accounts for potentially dangerous weather events. If you or someone in your family has been injured because of a snow or ice accident that was caused by someone else, the experienced Boston personal injury lawyers at the Bellotti Law Group can help you in your efforts to seek fair compensation for your injuries.
Under the negligence laws of Massachusetts, an injured person may seek compensation for harm suffered due to someone else’s breach of a legal duty, such as the duty of a motorist to drive at a safe speed, given various factors such as hazardous weather. There are four elements in a lawsuit seeking compensation for injuries suffered because of a snow or ice accident. The defendant must have owed the plaintiff a legal duty, the evidence must show that the defendant breached this duty, the defendant’s careless conduct must have led to the plaintiff’s injuries, and the plaintiff must be able to provide documentation or testimony showing their damages.How Snowy or Icy Conditions Can Affect a Personal Injury Case
Unfortunately, not everyone takes the weather into consideration in making decisions about property maintenance, the safe operation of an automobile, and other actions. Accidents often happen as a result. Rather than admitting to being careless or reckless, some defendants and their insurers will try to blame the weather or blame the plaintiff. Under Massachusetts law, a defendant is only liable in situations in which he or she is at least 50% to blame for an accident, and a defendant is only liable for damages equal to his or her percentage of fault. For example, if John and Jane are each found to be 50% at fault in a snow or ice accident, neither may recover any compensation from the other. If John is 51% at fault, however, Jane may recover 51% of her total damages from John. Thus, defendants are quick to blame the plaintiff for their own actions in snowy or icy weather.
Another obstacle in seeking fair compensation for injuries suffered in snow and ice accidents is the spoliation of evidence. While critical evidence can be lost in any case, the fact is that snow and ice disappear naturally. Without acting promptly, the plaintiff may be hard-pressed to prove the conditions that existed during his or her accident on the defendant’s property or at the time of a motor vehicle or bicycle accident. Thus, it is important that an accident victim contact a qualified injury lawyer as quickly as possible after a snow or ice accident. They also should try to document the scene with photographs, if possible. Having a friend or family member go back to the scene and take pictures can even be useful, if the plaintiff’s injuries prevent him or her from doing so. It is also important to keep records of all of the medical expenses and lost wages resulting from the accident. These can be sought as damages in an eventual claim.Retain a Boston Attorney to Fight for Fair Compensation
At the Bellotti Law Group, our seasoned attorneys assist accident victims in cities such as Boston, Cambridge, Lowell, Malden, Medford, Somerville, Newton, Waltham, Concord, Revere, Braintree, Quincy, and Weymouth. We know what it takes to fight for the compensation that you deserve following a snow or ice accident. For a free consultation, call us at 617-225-2100 or contact us online. We do not get paid for our work on a personal injury case, such as a car accident or premises liability claim, unless we are able to recover compensation for a client.