NYC Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
According to the New York City Department of Health, 497 pedestrians died in New York City from 2012 to 2014. Pedestrians accounted for more than half of all traffic-related deaths in this time period. Pedestrian collisions happen most often on NYC’s arterial roads (67%), such as SR-24 and SR-25. If a pedestrian survives a collision, he or she will often suffer injuries such as broken bones or brain injuries. After an injury or a loved one’s death in a pedestrian accident, call (833) 726-6326 to get help from an NYC pedestrian accident lawyer at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP.
Compensation for Injured Pedestrians in NYC
Pedestrians involved in New York City car accidents can suffer serious and debilitating injuries. At Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, we believe pedestrians should recover money damages for these injuries. Compensation might not reverse the damages you’ve suffered, but it could help you move forward without worrying about your family’s financial stability. The first step toward obtaining compensation for a pedestrian accident is to hire a personal injury attorney.
The New York civil justice system permits accident victims to use legal representation during injury claims. An NYC pedestrian accident lawyer can make sure a driver’s insurance company doesn’t take advantage of you or convince you to settle for less than your case is worth. An attorney can also help you navigate the state’s no-fault laws, which may limit your recovery to your insurance company only – even if you didn’t cause the collision. Entering into settlement negotiations with a lawyer in your corner can significantly improve your odds of financial recovery.
You can seek compensation from your auto insurance company after a pedestrian accident, even if you weren’t driving. If you don’t have car insurance, the driver’s insurer may be liable for damages. If neither one of you has insurance, you may not be able to recover for your damages. A consultation with an NYC pedestrian accident attorney, however, can help you discover hidden opportunities for compensation – such as filing a claim against the city for an unsafely designed crosswalk.
Available Damages in Pedestrian Accident Cases
The type and amount of your compensation award will depend on the extent of your damages. An evaluation of your injuries by an attorney can help you determine the value of your specific case. The types of compensation available, however, stay the same in New York. Injured pedestrians in NYC may be eligible for the following compensation categories:
- Pain and suffering. Non-economic pain and suffering damages can deliver thousands of dollars to victims if they suffered catastrophic injuries in the accident. Unfortunately, uninsured motorist insurance typically does not include compensation for pain and suffering. If you’re using this type of coverage, therefore, you might not be eligible.
- Medical bills. Almost all pedestrian accident claims result in compensation to cover past and future medical bills. This award can include hospital stays, ambulance fees, medical devices, doctor appointments, prescriptions, treatments, and lifelong medical care for an injured pedestrian.
- Lost income. The nature of most pedestrian collisions puts the victim out of work for days or weeks while he or she recuperates. Broken bones, for example, often require multiple doctor visits and weeks in a cast or splint. An employee who loses income because of his/her injuries can seek recovery for wage damages.
- Punitive damages. Drivers in NYC are often guilty of road rage, drunk driving, distracted driving, and other acts of extreme negligence. A New York judge may award punitive damages to punish a reckless driver for his/her misconduct.
The negotiation skills of your attorney can change the amount you receive for a pedestrian accident claim. The NYC pedestrian accident lawyers at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, have achieved outstanding results for past clients and may be able to do the same for you. We can immediately go to work on your claim, investigating who or what caused the collision, whether your insurance will cover damages, and if the at-fault driver has insurance. We can then file your personal injury claim, negotiate with insurance companies, and even go to trial if necessary for maximum compensation.
What Is Your NYC Pedestrian Accident Case Worth?
You can’t plan a legal strategy until you calculate your losses and understand the potential value of a personal injury claim. Many cases settle successfully without needing to go to trial. However, others may benefit the most from going to court. A conversation with one of our NYC pedestrian accident attorneys can give you an accurate idea of what your claim could be worth.
What to Do After a Pedestrian Accident in NYC
Protect your rights, right from the beginning. Take immediate action to safeguard yourself from common recovery roadblocks such as hit-and-run, insurance fraud, and denied claims. The actions you take right from the scene of your accident can determine how easy your legal journey is ahead. We at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, recommend taking the following steps if you’ve suffered injuries in a New York City pedestrian accident:
- Call 911. You should always report a car accident to police in NYC if it results in injuries or deaths. Since the probability of injury is high in a pedestrian collision, play it safe by dialing 911 from the scene. Explain that you were in an accident and that you may need an ambulance. Give police your side of what happened when they arrive. Don’t let the driver do all the talking, or he or she could end up swaying the police report against you.
- Get the driver’s information. Talk to the driver who hit you while you wait for police to arrive, getting important information such as the driver’s name, contact information, insurance company information, and license plate number. If the driver starts to take off from the scene of the accident before police arrive, take his or her picture if you can. A photo of the vehicle can help police catch the driver.
- Take photos of the scene. Take out your phone or camera and take photos of the scene of the accident, your injuries, damage to the driver’s vehicle, and other important details. Photographs can hold irrefutable evidence of the driver’s fault or negligence. A picture of food wrappers in the driver’s front seat, for example, could help you prove distracted driving.
- Request medical attention. Whether you notice any injuries or not, get an expert medical opinion. The adrenaline of a car hitting you could mask the fact that you have injuries. Tell police you aren’t sure if you’re injured and go to the hospital right away. You may have broken bones, a slipped disk, or a hidden traumatic brain injury. Keep track of all medical bills, records, receipts, and treatment plans.
- Report to your insurance company. Since New York is a no-fault state, your first outlet for recovery will be your own insurer, regardless of who was at fault. Call your insurance company as soon as you can to report the incident. Waiting too long could hurt your chances of financial recovery. Do not admit fault for the collision to your insurance company. Stick to the facts, but don’t speculate about fault.
- Create an accident folder. Start keeping track of information, data, and evidence surrounding your pedestrian accident case. Keep copies of medical bills, photographs, police reports, and other integral information in an organized file to make things easier for your claim later.
- Contact an NYC pedestrian accident lawyer. Request a free consultation with a local pedestrian accident attorney as soon as you’re well enough to do so. Consulting with a lawyer can help you understand your rights as a pedestrian in NYC, as well as your potential legal opportunities against the driver that hit you. Working with an attorney on your claim is the easiest way to maximize compensation.
If all else fails, remember to call Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, for help. Call us from the side of the road, the inside of an ambulance, a hospital room, or your home – we’ll be there to answer your questions and provide legal counsel day or night. Contact us no matter what steps you have or have not taken after an accident. We’ll take over any stage of your accident claim and immediately go to work on obtaining compensation.
Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Your recent pedestrian accident is unique, but that doesn’t mean you’re the first person to experience such a thing in New York City. The high number of pedestrians interacting in the same space as vehicles, taxis, and bicyclists, unfortunately, means collisions are inevitable. Certain injuries are more common than others in vehicle-pedestrian accidents. The type of injury you suffer will often depend on the speed of the vehicle and the point of impact. If you have any of the following injuries, speak with an NYC pedestrian accident lawyer:
- Bone fractures, especially in the lower body. The impact of a motor vehicle against a pedestrian’s hips, pelvis, knees, shins, or feet can break the bones. Bone fractures can be painful, debilitating, and take months to heal. Pedestrian accident victims with broken bones may qualify for significant compensation.
- Soft tissue injuries. Victims may sustain a range of soft tissue injuries, including bruising, muscle sprains or strains, neck and back injuries, and dislocations. Soft tissue injuries can happen upon initial impact with the vehicle, or when the pedestrian collides with the ground. These injuries can take months to heal or cause chronic pain.
- Cuts, scrapes, and lacerations. Lacerations are common in pedestrian accidents, especially when the victim comes in contact with broken glass or asphalt. Lacerations can take weeks to heal, come with a risk of infection, and leave behind permanent scars or disfigurement. Lacerations to the face and scalp are common, as it’s likely the victim’s head will strike the windshield in the collision.
- Traumatic brain injuries. If the pedestrian strikes his or her head on the hood of the car, the windshield, the ground, or other elements in a collision, a traumatic brain injury is possible. Head and brain injuries can cause long-lasting or permanent effects on physical and mental capabilities.
- Spinal cord injuries. Spine injuries are some of the most serious that may arise out of a pedestrian accident in New York City. Spinal cord fractures can cause permanent loss of movement and feeling below the point of injury. No cure for spinal cord injuries exists. Victims with these injuries may qualify for millions of dollars in lifelong damages.
- Amputation. In some cases, injuries to crushed or damaged limbs are too extensive for physicians to salvage the part. Surgeons may have to amputate a foot, leg, hand, arm, or fingers if it’s in the best interest of the patient. Serious infections, for example, may lead to amputation of an injured limb.
- Internal organ injuries. A victim’s internal organs may sustain serious, irreparable damage in a vehicle collision – especially if the vehicle rolls over the pedestrian. Internal bleeding, hematoma (bleeding in the brain), and collapsed lung are examples of internal injuries that could be fatal.
- Fatal injuries. Not every pedestrian in NYC survives collisions with motor vehicles. Head, spine, and organ damage could be fatal, taking the victim’s life on the spot, or later in the hospital. The loss of a loved one is devastating. A wrongful death claim against the at-fault driver could give your family the closure and future financial stability you need during this difficult time.
No matter what type of injury you suffered in an NYC pedestrian accident, call our firm to discuss your case at (833) 726-6326. We can investigate your accident, gather medical bills and records, analyze your injuries, determine fault, and fight for fair compensation. Our NYC pedestrian accident attorneys know how to litigate pedestrian injury claims against drivers, taxi companies, and insurers in the state of New York. We aren’t afraid to do what’s necessary for the best results possible, including taking your case to trial. Start your journey toward injury recovery today.
Frequently Asked Questions About Pedestrian Accidents in New York City
Our law firm has assisted hundreds of New Yorkers with pedestrian collisions since our founding years ago. We’ve seen firsthand how devastating these types of accidents can be to pedestrians and their families. Our New York City personal injury lawyers also recognize that victims can have many questions in the aftermath of a harmful or fatal crash. Here are five frequently asked questions we receive at our NYC office:
- When do I have right-of-way in NYC? Pedestrians have right of way in crosswalks, intersections, and sidewalks in New York City. If a pedestrian crosses at any point other than a crosswalk or intersection, he or she must yield right of way to vehicles.
- Could I be partially at fault for the accident? A common defense is to say that the pedestrian is partially responsible. The driver could allege that you weren’t paying attention, you left the curb before you had the “Walk” signal, or that you were jaywalking. In New York State, you could still be eligible for compensation, even if you were 99% at fault for the collision, thanks to pure comparative negligence laws.
- Should I settle with my insurance company? Talk to an NYC pedestrian accident lawyer first. Your insurance company may offer a settlement that’s less than the value of your claim. A discussion with a lawyer can help you understand the value of your damages, and whether or not to accept an insurance settlement offer.
- What if the driver fled the scene? As a pedestrian in a hit-and-run accident, you may be able to recover from your own insurance company through the state’s no-fault laws. If not, the NY Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation may offer compensation through its hit-and-run program.
- Can I file for my deceased loved one? In New York State, the only party that can file for wrongful death is the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This may or may not be a family member. An NYC pedestrian accident attorney can help you go through the probate process and assign the representative for a claim after a fatal pedestrian accident.
Pedestrian accidents can be complex, but don’t let this dissuade you from pursuing the compensation you believe you deserve. A competent lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your claim.
Free Consultation With a Qualified NYC Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one was injured in a pedestrian accident in New York, do not hesitate to contact the lawyers at Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP. We have years of experience in handling personal injury lawsuits and will work tirelessly for you from the start to secure fair compensation for you and your family. Schedule a free legal consultation to speak with one of our attorneys where you can ask additional questions and receive information about your specific pedestrian accident case, at no obligation to retain our firm. To get in touch with Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, call our office in NYC at (212) 897-1988 today.