Generally in any type of personal injury claim there may be more than one party to pursue. Sometimes there are several parties responsible for the same personal injuries. This is known as “joint and several liability” and here in Massachusetts, the law is structured to ensure that an accident victim receives the damages he or she is owed, even if one of the defendants is unable to pay part or all of the reward.
Specifically, Massachusetts General Law chap. 231B, sec. 2 was enacted to protect victims by ensuring that, so long as the victim was less than 51 percent responsible for the accident and the resulting injury, they’re entitled to be paid damages in full from any or all of the defendants found at fault – even of one or more of them is unable to pay. Put another way – if two individuals are found at fault and one cannot pay any or all of their share of the award, the other defendant is responsible for the award in full.
In circumstances that point to joint responsible parties, it is important to protect and pursue claims against all possible parties in the event that one cannot pay. A thorough, experienced personal injury attorney will conduct research into all possible parties who can be identified as responsible for all or part of an accident and injury. It is imperative to research the relationship between all possible parties to determine any relationship issues between these responsible parties which could benefit the plaintiff in pursuing compensation for personal injuries.
In short, Massachusetts law protects an injured party who is hurt by multiple defendants by ensuring that the injured party is paid the damages he or she is owed. By mandating judgments based upon joint and several liability among the defendants, Massachusetts law does its best to ensure this outcome.