New Hampshire's glorious autumn shades can distract even the most diligent drivers, which can result in car accidents, personal injuries and other negligence cases. Then it's a game of finding out who is liable and whose insurance covers what. Maybe it was you who experienced a car accident, or maybe it was a family member or friend. Whatever happens during your New Hampshire adventures, if you need guidance for your personal injury case, Enjuris has the answers.
New Hampshire Personal Injury Cases & Accident Info
New Hampshire statutes online
This is where you’ll find New Hampshire's revised statutes. The website has details about how long you have to bring a case, monetary limits on personal injury cases (which are also known as damage caps), and other important information.
New Hampshire's car accident statutes of limitation
In New Hampshire, you have three years to bring both a personal injury and a property damage claim. That means you have three years to file your paperwork with the court, not that your case has to be completed in that time frame.
The initial meeting with a personal injury attorney is normally free of charge. (Note that other legal specialties, such as white-collar crime law or intellectual property law, are different.) After that, lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means that they will take a third of the eventual reward or settlement, plus whatever office expenses they incur along the way.
If your case ends up going to trial, the percentage could rise to 40% of the eventual reward or judgment. These numbers aren't determined by law, so don't be surprised if your lawyer suggests something else.
These are some cases of legal significance that came out of New Hampshire's courts:
Rideout v. Gardner, No. 15-2021 (1st. Cir. 2016): This is the infamous "ballot selfie" case that slid into home plate right before the 2016 election. The 1stc US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the government had not demonstrated a compelling need to restrict voters' First Amendment rights to take selfies of themselves in the voting booth, as no voter fraud had been established. Cameras had been in use for 15 years at the time, and New Hampshire had not received a single complaint of vote buying or intimidation related to a voter's publishing of a photograph of a marked ballot during that period. Meanwhile, Snapchat submitted a "Friend of the Court" brief that said taking selfies was essentially a God-given right.
Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 315 U.S. 568 (1942): This case was a very important limitation on First Amendment rights, because it established the "fighting words" doctrine. Walter Chaplinsky, a Jehovah's Witness, was passing out literature in town and saying that organized religion was a "racket." When a police officer attempted to calm things down, as a crowd was forming, Chaplinsky shouted that the officer was a "God-damned racketeer" and a "damned Fascist." He was arrested and charged under New Hampshire's Offensive Conduct law. Chaplinsky claimed this violated his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights, and also that the law was hopelessly vague. A unanimous Supreme Court upheld his arrest, writing that certain "well-defined and narrowly limited" categories of speech are not protected by the Constitution, such as "the lewd and obscene, the profane, the slanderous," or "fighting" words that do not contribute any "social value."
Perry v. New Hampshire, 565 U.S. _____ (2012): An eyewitness saw the defendant breaking into her car and was able to identify him at the scene of the crime, but she was unable to pick him out again from a lineup or from photographs. She was also unable to describe him to police investigators. However, a second eyewitness was able to identify the defendant, picking him out from an array of photos. Perry attempted to have the identification suppressed because the photograph used was "unnecessarily suggestive." The court upheld his conviction, as judicial examination of eyewitness testimony is only required in the event of police misconduct.
There are many issues you can solve without the help of an attorney, surprisingly enough. If you don't know where to begin, a law librarian can help you. They are usually legally trained, and they can help you both with texts or online research engines like LexisNexis or Westlaw.