New York City Car Accident Attorney

Millions of car accidents happen every year in the United States. Our New York City car accident attorneys see them every day. Driver error, faulty vehicles, poor maintenance, dangerous road conditions, and many other factors contribute to crashes on New York’s roads each year. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a car accident, our attorneys can help.

Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP is a law firm for the people of New York City. We do not represent big companies. We work hard to help citizens recover their losses after car accidents so they can get their lives back together.

Why choose Sam n’ Dan for your car accident case?

  • We handle all car accident cases on a contingency fee basis. We never charge a fee unless we recover compensation on your behalf.
  • Our attorneys have secured over $100 million in verdicts and settlements on behalf of our clients.
  • We understand how car insurance companies operate and will not settle your claim for less than it’s worth.
  • If the insurance company does not treat you fairly, we will not hesitate to take your case to court.
  • We have the resources needed to properly investigate and litigate even the most complex car accident cases.

Call today for a free and confidential case evaluation with our New York City car accident attorneys.  

What to Do After a Car Accident in New York City

After a crash, first assess your condition. If you feel well enough to move around, check on the immediate area and the other drivers involved.

If your injuries are severe, remain calm and stay put until emergency responders arrive. Even if you do not feel seriously injured, it’s important to seek medical care as soon as you can for two reasons. First, some injuries do not immediately manifest symptoms. The adrenaline rush from the accident may dull pain. Failing to seek medical attention quickly could enable an injury to become more serious. Second, if you wait too long to seek treatment, a jury may view this as an indication that your injuries were not as serious as you claim. This could hurt your chances of winning a future lawsuit for your accident.

Notifying the Police

You are required to notify the police of any accident that caused an injury or property damage. Do so as soon as you are able. Make sure that you get an accident report. While you wait for the police to arrive, it’s a good idea to take photos of:

  • The accident scene
  • The damage to your vehicle
  • The positions of the vehicles on the road
  • Your injuries

It’s important to take your photos before the police clear away potentially valuable evidence. If your vehicle is movable and blocking traffic, do your best to clear it out of the way. The police will take statements from everyone involved in the accident and any witnesses. Be careful what you say, as the police may construe even off-the-cuff phrases like “I’m sorry,” or “I didn’t see…” as admissions of guilt. Answer the police officer’s questions honestly and concisely, but do not say anything that could be an admission of fault.

Car Accident Statute of Limitations in New York

Every state has strict deadlines by which all parties must file claims with the civil courts. Statutes of limitations exist to keep lawsuits fair. They prevent accident victims from waiting so long to file claims that important evidence is lost or destroyed. You must file a claim before the statute of limitations for a car accident expires to preserve your right to receive compensation. With rare exceptions, missing your deadline means losing your right to file.

In New York, the statute of limitations for a claim is three years from the date of the car accident. The three-year rule also applies for claims involving property damage only. If, however, one needs to file a wrongful death claim after a car accident, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of death to file. Most courts will toll, or extend, the statute of limitations until the date on which someone discovers his or her injuries. Contact our NYC car accident attorneys to discuss your precise deadline for filing.

New York Car Insurance Requirements

New York is a no-fault car insurance state. Auto insurance laws set out minimum amounts of coverage that all drivers must carry. All drivers should be able to seek financial recovery from their insurers after collisions. Failing to maintain the minimum required vehicle insurance could result in:

  • Legal fines
  • Penalties
  • A loss of driving privileges

The minimums in New York are:

  • $25,000 in liability for injuries to one person, $50,000 for multiple people
  • $50,000 in liability insurance for death to one person, $100,000 for multiple people
  • $10,000 in liability insurance for property damage
  • $50,000 in no-fault coverage per person
  • $25,000 in uninsured motorist insurance for injuries to one person, $50,000 for multiple people

Liability insurance pays for the other party’s damages. It does not cover the policyholder’s losses. No-fault coverage is the insurance that helps the insured person. No-fault insurance will pay for:

  • The policyholder’s medical bills
  • 80% of lost income (up to $2,000 per month)
  • $25 per day for household help
  • $2,000 in death benefits.

Uninsured motorist insurance will help if you get into a crash with someone who doesn’t have insurance or with a hit-and-run driver. Drivers can also purchase optional supplemental uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance up to $250,000 per person and $500,000 per accident.

Compensation for NYC Car Accident Victims

A New York City car accident attorney can fight for fair compensation after a disastrous car accident. What is fair will depend on the extent and costs of your injuries, as well as the impact they will have on your future. The lawyer you hire can determine how much you receive from an insurance company or other defendant. The types of compensation, however, remain the same:

  1. Medical coverage
  2. Lost wages
  3. Pain and suffering
  4. Punitive damages

An insurance claim alone may not cover the full extent of your damages. Under New York’s no-fault laws, you cannot file a civil claim against an at-fault party unless your accident resulted in catastrophic injuries or disfigurement. Help from a qualified NYC car accident lawyer can go a long way toward securing you the financial recovery you need to move on after a harmful accident. Our attorneys can negotiate with insurers and pursue recovery through other means.

NYC Car Accident Statistics

The New York City Police Department recorded more than 135,000 car crashes during 2016. Of those accidents, more than 24,000 accidents resulted in more than 34,000 injuries and 134 fatalities. Those who support redesigning the city’s arterial streets believe that doing so could prevent as many as 50 deaths and 1,200 serious injuries.

New York City Car Accidents and Injuries by Month

What are traffic calming measures?

Another reason the NYC DOT is working so hard to fix the city’s roads is a new ruling from New York’s highest court. This ruling states that the city is liable for injuries and fatalities in areas without any “traffic calming measures.” These are safety structures and road designs intended to prevent speeding and traffic collisions. This ruling puts pressure on the NYC DOT to specifically address the most hazardous roads and intersections in the area.

A driver injured in a New York car accident may be able to sue the city as well as the driver who caused the accident. This depends on whether any “traffic calming” measures were in place or if the NYC DOT knew about the accident location’s hazardous nature. In cases like these, you will need a skilled New York City car accident attorney for help.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in New York

Driver error is the main cause of New York car accidents. Drivers who don’t pay attention to the road, drive while intoxicated, or break roadway rules are all likely to cause accidents. With millions of licensed drivers in the New York City area, it comes as no surprise that car accidents occur so frequently in the city.

New York City Licensed Driver Statistics

Here’s a breakdown of some of the most common reasons for collisions:

  • Driver distraction. In 2016, at least 3,450 people died in the U.S. because of distracted driving. New York law prohibits the use of handheld cell phones behind the wheel to text, talk, read emails, or conduct other business. Unfortunately, many people ignore this rule. Other types of distractions include cognitive distractions, eating and drinking, talking to passengers, and personal grooming.
  • Drunk driving. Every year, hundreds of people die or suffer serious injuries in New York driving under the influence (DUI) accidents. Drunk drivers cannot react as quickly to changing situations as sober drivers. Poor judgment and lack of ability to control the vehicle often contribute to these collisions. Someone is still guilty of DUI below a blood alcohol level of less than 0.08% if he or she is too intoxicated to drive.
  • Reckless Driving. New York has traffic laws in place to prevent collisions. Ignoring roadway rules, failing to yield the right of way, passing too closely, speeding, and running red lights increase the risk of causing car accidents. An investigation may help gather evidence of another driver’s fault.
  • Defective auto parts. Sometimes humans make errors at auto part manufacturing facilities. Defective and dangerous brakes, tires, steering columns, ignition devices, and other parts can cause a driver to lose control of a vehicle and crash. Defective elements can increase the odds of passengers suffering serious injuries.
  • Dangerous roadways. Uneven shoulders, construction zones, potholes, debris in the road, loose gravel, malfunctioning traffic lights, shrubs covering roadway signs, and poorly designed intersections can all contribute to car crashes. In these cases, the city could be liable for injuries for negligently failing to maintain safe roads and prevent accidents.

Contact a New York City Car Accident Lawyer If You’ve Been Injured

If insurance is not fully covering your loses, it’s time to start thinking about a lawsuit. The New York City car accident attorneys at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP work diligently to help clients recover compensation.

Contact us to schedule a free case evaluation. Depending on the location, severity, and details of your accident, we can help you:

  • File a claim against a negligent driver
  • Handle your insurance claim concerns
  • Bring a lawsuit against the City of New York if necessary

“Sam Meirowitz is THE best lawyer in New York! My family and I could not have gone to a better lawyer. Highly recommend!”

Hope