New Hampshire is unique in that it is one of the only states that does not require motorists to carry car insurance. In instances where a New Hampshire’s driver’s negligence results in property damage or bodily injury, the driver must pay for the other party’s damages. In some circumstances, the liable party refuses or cannot pay the costs; in those cases, the state will suspend the driver’s license until they can arrange a payment plan or obtain coverage. However, in some situations, the at-fault motorist may not pay, and New Hampshire drivers should retain an experienced car accident attorney to help them recover for their damages.
Although New Hampshire does not require motorists to obtain car insurance, they must still offer uninsured/underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. They must allow drivers to purchase an amount that equals the driver’s liability coverage. This coverage generally covers the policyholder as a driver, pedestrian, or passenger in another vehicle. Additionally, it protects passengers and other authorized drivers. Some policies even apply to passengers that suffer injuries when the driver is an authorized driver in another vehicle. However, the insurance company’s main objective is their financial interest, and there are situations where they will deny coverage.
For instance, a state appellate court issued an opinion addressing issues that frequently arise in New Hampshire personal injury lawsuits and claims against insurance companies. In that case, a special needs child suffered abuse while he was a passenger on a school bus. He evoked his mother’s uninsured motorist provision to recover for the injuries he sustained because of the abuse. The insurance company refused to pay out damages and stated that the provision only applies to injuries that “arise out of the ownership, maintenance, or use” of an uninsured vehicle. The court ultimately found in favor of the insurance company and refused to cover the child’s injuries.
This situation, although unique, highlights the issues that many New Hampshire injury victims face when trying to collect damages from an at-fault party or their insurance company. Insurance policies are generally vague regarding what “arises out of” means, and it is often up to the courts to determine whether a situation lends itself to coverage. Although determinations are made on a case-by-case basis, generally, courts will look to the causal connection between the injury and the action.
Have You Been Involved in an Accident With an Uninsured Motorist?
If you or someone you know has suffered major injuries after being involved in an accident with a negligent driver, you should contact the experienced New Hampshire car accident attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates. The attorneys at our law firm have extensive experience handling claims against uninsured motorists and adversarial insurance companies. We have successfully recovered substantial settlements and awards on behalf of our clients. Our clients have received compensation related to property damage, medical bills, ongoing medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Battling an insurance company can raise many challenges, and it is crucial to retain an experienced attorney from our firm to represent you. Contact our office at 800-804-2004 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney at our law firm.