New Mexico Personal Injury Overview
New Mexico personal injury includes accidents which cause physical injury, such as brain injuries or birth injuries, and other types of cases such as those involving damage to your property or personal harm, such as malicious prosecution.
Personal injury laws are similar in each state, but the nuances can make or break your case. It is always important to work with a personal injury attorney who has experience in your state and understands its unique laws.
When you are partly at fault
The state of New Mexico favors the plaintiff when it comes to responsibility. Pure comparative negligence allows you to receive compensation even if you were 99% to blame for your injuries. Your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault, so if you were 70% to blame, you could still collect compensation for 30% of your losses. In some cases this is a significant amount and can help you get back on your feet.
Damages and caps
Compensation can include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Future lost wages
- Permanent disability
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disfigurement
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Property damage
- Other expenses directly caused by your injury
Damages such as pain and suffering or emotional distress are called non-economic damages. New Mexico does not place a limit on the non-economic damages you may receive.
Punitive damages are not compensatory, meaning they do not compensate you for your loss. They are designed to punish the defendant for wrong doing. In order to receive punitive damages you must prove that the defendant’s conduct was wanton, willful, reckless, malicious, oppressive, or fraudulent.
Collecting when multiple parties are involved
It is not unusual for there to be multiple responsible parties (besides yourself) in a personal injury lawsuit. When this is the case in New Mexico, Several liability says that you must collect your money individually from each party. If one party fails to pay, you cannot collect their portion form the other party or parties.
The time limit for filing your lawsuit is called the statute of limitations. This is one of the most important aspects of your case, because if you wait too long, you will not be able to sue, no matter how good your case is or how much you deserve compensation. You need an experienced personal injury attorney to determine the exact deadline for filing in your case.
Statute of limitations can be very complicated with many factors determining when the clock starts ticking. In some cases the time is tolled from the date of your injury. In others it may not begin until the wrongdoing which caused your injury is discovered or “should have been” discovered. There are sometime special circumstances which extend the deadline, such as injuries to minors.
Most types of personal injury in New Mexico have a state of limitations of three years.
If you have been injured or lost a loved one to someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing in the state of New Mexico, please contact one of our New Mexico personal injury lawyers for a free claim evaluation.