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NYC Personal Injury Lawyer

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If another person’s negligence resulted in your injuries, you could be entitled to compensation. To prove negligence and recover damages in New York, you might need a personal injury lawyer.

This article is an in-depth overview of personal injury laws in NYC that could help you get the money you deserve.

Types of Personal Injury Cases in NYC

More than 1.5 million New Yorkers suffer from injuries every year, and about 8,000 of these injuries are fatal. The most common cause of personal injuries in NYC is motor vehicle collisions, and in Manhattan alone, the number of such accidents exceeds 1,700 monthly.  

Car Accidents

With over 2 million cars driving around NYC, it’s not surprising that accidents are widespread. NYC car accident injuries can range from minor to severe. If you’ve suffered serious harm after a car accident in NYC, it’s important to hold the negligent drivers accountable when they break traffic laws or act carelessly behind the wheel. 

Trucking Accidents

More than 89% of New York communities depend solely on trucks to move their goods. That’s why the number of these vehicles on NYC roads is substantial. Due to the size of these motor vehicles, injuries sustained in truck accidents are often severe.

Pedestrian Accidents

On the streets of New York, injuries to pedestrians are among the top 10 causes of injury-related hospital admissions and deaths. If a pedestrian is involved in a traffic accident, injuries are usually severe. Sometimes, pedestrians cause accidents by jaywalking, ignoring traffic signs, or making sudden moves. Proving liability is vital to recovering fair compensation. 

Motorcycle Accidents

About 1,600 New Yorkers receive hospital treatment after motorcycle crashes annually. These accidents account for 14% of all traffic fatalities in New York City. Since motorcyclists aren’t as protected as other motor vehicle drivers, they often suffer serious harm in crashes and need extensive treatment, which can be costly with prolonged recovery times. 

Bicycle Accidents

In 2020, over 5,000 cyclists sustained injuries on NYC roads. While children under 14 must wear a helmet when cycling in New York, adults aren’t held to same requirements, which is one reason why NYC bicycle accidents lead to severe injuries.

Construction Site Accidents

Construction site accidents are still common despite significant advances in safety equipment, technologies, and training. The injury rate in construction is 71% higher than across other industries.   

In many cases, construction accidents result from the employer’s negligence. If the injured party can prove the employer’s liability, they could receive sizable compensation.

One of the obstacles in such cases is solid legal representation from the employer’s side. That’s why employees often need a personal injury attorney to maximize their chances of getting the money they deserve.

Slip-and-Fall Accidents

Slip-and-fall accidents lead to all types of injuries. The common causes of these accidents are:

  • Poor sidewalk maintenance
  • Broken or uneven steps
  • Failure to remove ice and snow
  • Slippery surfaces
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Lack of warning signs

When a person slips and falls on private or public property and proves the property owner’s negligence, they can receive compensation.

Catastrophic Injuries

All the above accidents may result in catastrophic injuries. A catastrophic injury is a severe injury that significantly impacts a person’s quality of life. These injuries aren’t always permanent but may take years to heal.

Common examples of catastrophic injuries are:

Payouts in catastrophic injury cases are usually higher. That’s because current and future medical expenses are more extensive than less severe injuries.

Wrongful Death Cases

If injuries sustained in an accident lead to a person’s death, their family can file a wrongful death lawsuit. The damages involved in wrongful death claims include:

  • Pre-death medical bills
  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Loss of support, inheritance, companionship

To obtain compensation, you would need to prove the negligence of another party.

Deadline to File a Motor Vehicle Accident Report in NYC

If you’ve been in a car accident, you must file an accident report. According to Section 605 of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, if you are involved in an accident where:

  • Someone sustained injuries or died
  • There was property damage to one individual (including you) of more than $1,000

You have ten days from the day of the accident to file an accident report. Otherwise, your license may be suspended.

If a person is injured or killed in a motor vehicle accident, you must notify the police immediately. Leaving the scene of an accident that caused a personal injury or death is a crime.

The accident report is evidence in your injury case. It can be vital to prove another party’s negligence. This report may be used in conjunction with the police officer’s testimony in a personal injury lawsuit.

To obtain a copy of the report, you can:

  • Visit the local police and ask if your account is available.
  • If the DMV has already processed the information, you could order and access it online.

It may take up to 60 days for the DMV to process the report.

How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit in New York?

If you’ve suffered injuries in an accident, you only have a limited amount of time to file a personal injury lawsuit.

According to New York law, the statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits is three years from the date of the incident. In wrongful death cases, the statute of limitation is two years from the date of a person’s death.

The court may extend the statute of limitations if:

  • The plaintiff is a minor – the clock starts running after the accident victim turns 18.
  • The defendant is absent – if the defendant leaves the state for four months or longer, this period may not count toward the statute of limitations.

While the statute of limitation is substantial, waiting too long to file a personal injury claim isn’t advisable. To maximize your chances of getting fair compensation, you might want to contact New York personal injury lawyers, as soon as possible.

Experienced legal representatives recommend:

  • Gathering evidence while it’s fresh.
  • Speaking to witnesses before their memories of the incident fade.
  • Filing a lawsuit before the defendant decides to leave NYC.

In most cases, acting quickly protects your right to compensation if facts warrant a personal injury lawsuit.

How can an NYC personal injury lawyer help me after an accident?

While you aren’t obligated to hire a personal injury attorney after an accident, it’s highly advisable. A personal injury lawyer can:

  • Evaluate the case and compensation possibilities
  • Advise on available legal options based on the facts of your case
  • Collect evidence, gather testimonies, and conduct an independent and thorough investigation
  • Negotiate with the insurance company to maximize settlements
  • Interview eyewitnesses and record their testimonies
  • Subpoena expert witnesses (professionals in medical, psychiatric, manufacturing, and scientific fields) to testify on your behalf and help prove the extent of your damages
  • Represent your best interests in court
  • Share valuable information and answer any questions you may have throughout the process
  • Provide legal and emotional support through the case
  • Protect your legal rights and improve case results

Working with a personal injury law firm with a proven track record can enhance your chances of fair damage recovery.

Personal injury victims who deal with medical issues rarely have sufficient time and energy to handle legal action. An experienced attorney can minimize your efforts while improving the case’s outcome.

Proving Liability After an Injury in NYC

In New York, the amount of monetary damages you receive in a personal injury case depends on your ability to prove the other party’s negligence. To do that, you would need to demonstrate:

  • Legal duty of care – the defendant should have a legal duty of care to the plaintiff. For example, in a car accident, the driver has a legal obligation to act reasonably and ensure the safety of other traffic participants.
  • Breach of duty of care – the plaintiff breached the legal duty of care. For example, the driver ran a red light and endangered other traffic participants.
  • Causation – the plaintiff’s actions caused the defendant’s injuries. For example, the driver ran a red light, hit the defendant’s car, and the defendant suffered whiplash.
  • Damages – the plaintiff’s failure to exercise the legal duty of care caused damages to the plaintiff. For example, the defendant suffered whiplash and needed costly therapy.

It’s important to know that you can still obtain compensation even if you are partially liable for the accident.

Pure Comparative Liability

NY is a pure comparative liability state, and it means that any party involved in a personal injury case can recover damages even if they are 99% at fault.

For example, driver A, who was under the influence, hit driver B, whose taillights were broken. Both drivers sustained injuries and filed personal injury lawsuits for $100,000.

The judge determined that driver A was 90% at fault for the accident while driver B’s liability was 10%. In this case, driver A gets 10% ($10,000), and driver B receives 90% ($90,000).

While the comparative negligence law in NY is lenient, it creates an opportunity for wrongfully placed blame. Having an experienced legal team in your corner can help minimize shared liability and maximize compensation.

Can I sue the City or State of New York after an injury?

In some cases, you can sue the city of the state of New York after a personal injury. For example, if you tripped and fell on a poorly maintained sidewalk or if a city employee is responsible for the accident.

Cases against the government are usually more complex than cases against private parties. The nuances of suing the city or state of New York include:

  • Notice of claim – you must file a notice of claim before you can sue. You have to serve the notice of claim within 90 days of the incident. In most cases, the government denies the claim, allowing you to proceed with the lawsuit.
  • Statute of limitations – you only have a little over a year from the date of the injury or accident to file a lawsuit against NY or NYC.

Even if you sustain a severe personal injury, suing the city or the state of New York is usually complicated, time-consuming, and frustrating. The government has top-notch legal teams on its side. Without experienced injury lawyers, obtaining fair compensation is nearly impossible.

How can the New York personal injury attorneys at Meirowitz & Wasserberg help with my claim?

New York personal injury attorneys at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP can maximize your chances of receiving a fair settlement in an individual injury case. With high-quality legal representation, you can:

  • Improve the outcome during negotiations with the insurance company.
  • Gain access to all the necessary evidence.
  • Receive legal and personal support throughout the case.
  • Get answers to essential questions about the lawsuit.
  • File all documentation correctly and on time.
  • Have peace of mind about doing everything possible to obtain fair compensation.

Samuel Meirowitz and Daniel Wasserberg have a stellar local and national reputation. Over the years, they’ve helped clients obtain millions of dollars in compensation. These attorneys focus on individualized support, making them the top choice for New York and beyond personal injury victims.

Don’t lose your shot at a sizable compensation if you’ve suffered an injury. Protect your rights and contact Meirowitz & Wasserberg for a free consultation today.

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New York, NY 10018


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