According to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS), almost 80,000 car accidents occurred throughout the state in 2018. They involved over 170,000 people, including 1,341 victims who experienced serious injuries and 381 who died from their accident, more than 6 percent higher than in 2017. Fatalities included:
- Motor vehicle passengers (258)
- Motorcyclists (58)
- Pedestrians (45)
- ATV riders (10)
- Bicyclists (7)
- Other types of vehicles (3)
If you suffered injuries in a car accident or lost someone you loved in a highway collision because of another person’s negligent driving, a Minnesota car accident lawyer can help you seek compensation. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case with our legal team.
Establishing Liability in a Minnesota Car Accident
As a no-fault state, anyone injured in a motor vehicle accident in Minnesota can receive a certain amount of medical and non-medical coverage from their insurance companies for injuries and losses resulting from the accident. Minnesota Statute § 65B.44 requires minimum no-fault coverage of $40,000 per person, per accident. This requirement includes up to $20,000 for medical costs and $20,000 for non-medical damages, such as lost wages.
Exceptions to the No-Fault Rule
After the victim’s PIP runs out and their circumstances meet at least one of the following criteria, they can seek additional recovery from the at-fault driver’s liability insurance coverage.
- More than $4,000 in medical expenses
- Permanent injury
- Permanent disfigurement
- 60 or more days of disability
To pursue a liability claim, the other driver must have caused the accident. Minnesota requires drivers to carry liability coverage of at least:
- $30,000 for one person
- $60,000 for two people
- $10,000 for property damage
If the at-fault driver does not have insurance or has an inadequate policy, the victim can collect from their uninsured or underinsured coverage. Each requires a minimum of $25,000 for one person’s injuries or $50,000 for two or more people’s injuries.
Finally, no-fault coverage does not include property damage. A victim still can file a claim against the at-fault driver’s liability policy for repair bills or replacement costs to their vehicle.
Statute of Limitations on Car Accident Claims
Minnesota Statute § 541.07 sets a two-year time limit to file a personal injury lawsuit for injuries suffered in car accidents, while Minnesota Statute § 541.05 allows up to six years from the date of the accident to file property damage claims against the at-fault driver.
In instances of wrongful death, families could qualify to seek additional damages from the at-fault driver. After proving that the driver acted recklessly or negligently and caused the accident that led to their loved one’s death, immediate family members such as spouses and children can pursue compensation for the damages that resulted from the victim’s death. In Minnesota, families have up to three years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim against the other driver.
If your car accident left you with injuries or caused financial instability due to the loss of a loved one, a Minnesota car accident lawyer can help you build your case. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today, and a member of our legal team can review your case and discuss your options.
Causes of Car Accidents in Minnesota
The DPS states that most car accidents have more than one contributing factor. While police officers can list both vehicular and human error as causes, human error appears more frequently in reports than vehicular issues. Causes and injury severity also depend on the ages of the drivers involved. While older people tend to drive more safely than younger drivers, younger drivers often suffer less severe injuries.
Different types of accidents have varying primary causes. Excluding alcohol impairment, reckless driving constitutes the leading cause of single-vehicle crashes. Following too closely and failing to yield account for almost one-fourth of the state’s multiple-vehicle collisions. In 2018, alcohol-related accidents led to 23 percent of all serious injuries and nearly one-third of traffic fatalities.
Types of Compensation for Car Accident Victims
In addition to the payment entitled to you from your insurance company, you can file a claim to seek additional compensation from the at-fault driver if you meet the conditions to do so. Minnesota allows victims to seek both economic and non-economic damages from the other driver’s insurance carrier. Liability compensation may include payment for:
- Medical bills resulting from accident-related injuries that exceed the amount your personal injury protection (PIP) covers.
- Lost wages or loss of future income if you cannot work permanently or for an extended period.
- Property damage, including the repair or replacement of your vehicle and other personal effects damaged in the accident.
- Pain and suffering or mental anguish for the trauma you suffered because of the accident.
- Loss of consortium, also known as loss of companionship, if your loved one suffered injuries or died in the crash.
How a Minnesota Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You
The laws regarding car accidents, insurance coverage, and filing claims against at-fault drivers contain complicated stipulations, but a Minnesota car accident lawyer can help you navigate the legal system. Car accident victims and their families may feel intimidated by the idea of holding the other driver accountable for their negligence, especially when they must already manage their financial and emotional losses. An attorney can help victims determine the value of their claim and, if they cannot settle with the insurance company, take their case to court on their behalf.
Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Today
If a reckless or negligent driver caused an accident that led to your injuries or the death of your loved one, and your expenses exceed the coverage provided by your insurance company, a Minnesota car accident lawyer can help you file a claim against the driver and pursue the compensation you deserve for your losses.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm works on a contingency fee basis, which means you do not receive a bill for our services unless we recover financial awards for you. Contact us today at (800) 794-0444 to speak with our legal team about your free case evaluation.