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What is a Tort Case, and What does it Involve in New Hampshire?

Another word for tort is injury.Tort cases in New Hampshire are a part of civil cases in the state. A case constitutes a tort when an individual suffers injury because of the failed responsibility on the part of the liable party. Liable parties may be private or public entities. There are laws of the state and Courts that govern and handle respectively, the adjudication of tort cases in New Hampshire.

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching simpler, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for a specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
  • The location or assumed location of the record or person involved. This includes information such as the city, county, or state that person resides in or was accused in.

Third-party sites are independent from government sources, and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party sites may vary.

What is New Hampshire Tort Law?

Tort law in New Hampshire refers to a system of legal interpretations and instructions that form the framework of cases involving personal or property injury in the state. A unique feature of the New Hampshire tort law is that of modified comparative negligence. This is to say that New Hampshire laws on tort impose that an injury caused is not 100% the fault of the liable party. In other words, the law shares the fault between the injured party and the responsible party. Therefore, only 65% of the damages claimed gets awarded to the injured party. The law also gives stipulations as to the limitation of statutes which place a time limit during which injured parties must make their claims official. The official time limit is three years from the date of the incident for a court filing, and 180 days for a notice of claim. As is with all torts, there are at least three categories: negligence, intentional, and strict liability tort. New Hampshire is a sovereign state, therefore there are restrictions on what type of tort the state can accept as a liability.

What Kinds of Cases are Covered by Tort Law in New Hampshire?

All three categories of tort cases are heard in New Hampshire Courts or received as tort claim notices by delegated establishments. Some of them include:

  • Strict liabilities such as dog bite and products liability
  • Negligence such as construction errors, auto accidents and medical malpractice
  • Intentional tort such as intentional abuse of process, false imprisonment, maltreatment, etc.

What are the Differences Between Criminal Law and Tort Law in New Hampshire?

Although criminal law and tort law have a commonality of an injured victim, there are clear differences between the two systems:

  • In tort cases, the law attempts to adjudicate between both parties while sustaining equity and justice. On the other hand, the law guiding the adjudication of criminal cases direct the case towards the punishment of the offender
  • Wrongdoing in tort law is defined in civil terms. That is to say wrongdoing in tort law is a simple or minor violation of civil rights. It is different in criminal law, as wrongdoing is an offence against the society that is punishable by law.
  • A main feature in tort case resolutions is compensation, while punitive measures constitute the most part in a criminal case judgement.

What is the Purpose of Tort Law New Hampshire?

The laws of tort in New Hampshire aim primarily to compensate injured members of the society. In some cases such as intentional torts, the legal procedures pose a deterrent to members of the society prone to such activities. Ultimately, tort law sustains the necessary sense of dignity and respect for human rights in the state.

What is a Tort Claim New Hampshire?

A tort claim is an official notice by the injured victim to the authorities (government-owned entities) of the injury caused by the liable party and a demand for compensation.

Tort claims apply only to government agencies, whether state or local. A tort claim is a necessary prerequisite to filing a personal injury suit against a government entity in New Hampshire.

How Do You File a Tort Claim in New Hampshire?

Injured parties wishing to file a tort claim in New Hampshire must note the following:

  • Determine who the liable party is: identifying who is responsible for the injury is the first step to filing a tort claim in the state. Private entities ( individuals or private businesses) can easily be identified by the names and ground address. When it comes to a public entity, it is important to identify who the liable party should be. A personal injury lawyer will be of tremendous help at this point. The business directory of the state provides the list of registered businesses in the state.
  • Define the type of injury based on the law: the injured party must be able to place the type of injury suffered under one of the definitions of tort in the state. It is also important to determine if there is a government protection from such liabilities. This applies to government entities in the case of intentional torts. Intentional torts usually involve the representing employee.
  • Calculate the damages incurred by the incident: there are restrictions by state laws on maximum financial values based on the type of damage. Again, it is important to get a lawyer’s advice for this.
  • Identify the administrative pathway for filing a tort claim: the small claims court in New Hampshire handles personal injury matters of values not more than $7500. All cases with monetary value over $5000 must undergo mandatory mediation. Some counties allow for electronic filing. Contact the local courthouse for more information about the procedure. Prepare to pay filing fees. For claims notices to the state, the Board of Claims reviews cases of not more than $5000. Here is the address:

New Hampshire Board of Claims

107 N. Main Street, Rm. 204

Concord, NH 03301

Call (603) 271–3242, or send an email

For higher monetary values, file the notice with the Superior Court. File a claim with the courthouse where either the plaintiff, the defendant or the site of the incident is located.

  • For tort claim notices filed against government entities, identify the administrative pathway for the process. Although the principle is the same there are different agencies or departments that receive tort claims on behalf of different government institutions in the state.

What Does a Tort Claim Contain in New Hampshire?

There is no one standard form for tort claims in New Hampshire. However, there is basic information that is common to all, among which are:

  • The names and contact information of the claimant
  • The full names or business name and contact address of the liable party
  • The date and location of the incident
  • A brief but clear description of the incident
  • A brief outline of proof of injury
  • A monetary estimate of damages claimed by the injured party

Most of the time, an attorney representation is required from inception, in the event that the case does not get an approval from the government entity involved.

What Happens after a Tort Claim is Filed in New Hampshire?

What happens after a tort claim is filed in New Hampshire depends on the type of claim and the processing institution for it. For small claims, the liable party gets handed the papers of the lawsuit and must respond within 30 days from the date of service. Subsequent action would depend on the response of the liable party. When it comes to government entities there is an investigation process on the tort claim. When the relevant authorities confirm the incident and acknowledge liability, the injured party gets a notification. Otherwise it could be a dismissal of the claim. Injured parties may take steps based on the feedback.

Why Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer for a Tort Claim?

In small claims courts, the services of a personal injury lawyer are not required, although the injured party may decide to consult an attorney unofficially for expert advice. For larger claims or cases involving corporate entities or government institutions, it is important to get the services of an attorney both for advice and representation. When it comes to government entities the rules of immunity and protection from liability can complicate what should otherwise have been a simple matter. The services of a personal injury lawyer are invaluable in this regard.

How Can I Find a Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me?

Interested parties can look up a personal injury lawyer by searching through online directories using the keywords of state and area of expertise. Most local attorneys and firms in New Hampshire have website addresses and are therefore visible online. The use of personal reference from settings that have had tort claims in the past they also help. Alternatively, visit the New Hampshire Judicial Branch for links to a register of licensed lawyers in the state.

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