In Need of a Car Accident Lawyer in New York City, NY?
The auto accident attorney at David Resnick & Associates, P.C., understands the dangerous driving conditions that New Yorkers face every day. We know what factors contribute to collisions in New York City. This helps us fight for the rights of victims who have been injured in traffic accidents.
If you have been hurt in a New York City accident, or if you have lost a close family member in a car crash, you may be entitled to compensation for your car accident injuries or your loss. For a free initial consultation of your case, call David Resnick & Associates, P.C. now or fill out our online contact form.
Why You Need a New York Auto Accident Lawyer
In New York City, several factors contribute to dangerous driving conditions, including heavy traffic, road construction, a high volume of pedestrians, bicycle traffic, and tourists. The result is a higher risk of a car accident than in any other city in the state of New York. Resulting in the importance of representation from an experienced New York traffic crash attorney.
Our lawyers can help you after being involved in an auto accident by:
- A lawyer can help you understand your rights. New York car accident claims are complex because New York has a no-fault system. This means that every driver has to buy personal injury protection (PIP) coverage and has to rely on this coverage to pay medical costs and lost wages in the event of a crash that causes only “minor” injuries.
Getting your insurer to pay a PIP claim can be complicated, especially since there are strict time limits. A New York City auto accident lawyer can help.
Car accident victims with serious injuries must show that they are eligible to file a personal injury claim outside of the no-fault system. This adds another layer of complexity to auto accident lawsuits. A car accident lawyer in New York City can assist you with all aspects of a claim when your injuries are serious, from proving your eligibility to following through with your case so you can recover the maximum compensation available under the law.
- A lawyer can assist you in valuing your claim. When you make a personal injury claim after a car accident, the case could be resolved in different ways. One way is to settle out of court for an agreed-upon sum. Another way is to sue and let a judge or jury decide what you deserve.
In order to determine whether you should settle – and for how much – you need to know what your claim is actually worth. This can be hard to determine. While every case is different, there are certain things you should be compensated for in an auto accident lawsuit, including medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. A lawyer who is familiar with car accident claims in New York can help you estimate the value of your claim. Knowing the value of your case is essential because you want to make sure that you do not leave money on the table and that you get enough compensation to allow you to rebuild your life after a serious car crash.
- A lawyer can help you investigate the cause of the accident. In order for an auto accident attorney in New York City to settle a claim for serious injuries, you need to show that another driver was legally responsible for the accident. Proving legal responsibility involves showing negligence and causation. Negligence means the other driver broke a safety rule or was unreasonably careless. Causation means that the negligence was a direct cause of the crash, which was a direct cause of your injuries.
It is often unclear exactly who was to blame for an accident, especially if you and the other driver have conflicting stories about what happened. A New York City car accident attorney can help you gather the evidence you need to prove that your crash was caused by another driver.
The sooner you contact a lawyer and start to gather this evidence, the stronger the case you can build.
- A lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company. Those companies are not your friends. They are not looking out for you. They are not trying to make sure you are fairly compensated for all of your losses. Insurance companies want to hold on to their money so they can be profitable, and they have a team of lawyers and experts who help them do that. This is true both when you are trying to get money from your own insurance and when you are trying to get money from another driver’s insurer.
You deserve to have your own knowledgeable advocate who can deal with them on your behalf. A New York City personal injury attorney understands auto accident laws and insurance laws. Your attorney can review and interpret your policy and value your claim. Your attorney can then use negotiating skills and legal knowledge to fight to get you a fair settlement from your insurer.
Settling out of court could be preferable to avoid the time, stress, and expense of a trial – as long as a fair settlement is reached.
- A lawyer can take your case to court to get you the money that the law entitles you to. When the insurance company will not offer a fair settlement or when it acts in bad faith, you need to go to court to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Car accident lawsuits can be complicated, and there are many legal rules and procedures that must be followed. You also have the burden of proving your case to recover damages.
Dealing with court rules and presenting evidence are not things you should try to do on your own. Instead, you should turn to a legal professional who knows the New York court system and knows how to build and present a case, giving you the best chance of obtaining full and fair compensation after your crash.
Maximizing Your Recovery in an Auto Accident Case
If you were injured in a car accident in New York City, you may be entitled to recover compensation for the injuries caused by the accident. This may include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages represent out-of-pocket expenses such as medical bills and lost wages, while noneconomic damages are intended to compensate a victim for the pain and suffering caused by the accident.
Because New York has a “no-fault” insurance law, not all victims are entitled to pain and suffering damages. The no-fault laws require a victim’s own liability insurance provider to compensate the victim for economic damages up to a certain point regardless of who was to blame for the collision. If the victim suffered “serious” injuries in the crash, then the victim may also be entitled to pursue additional economic damages as well as noneconomic damages through a traditional personal injury lawsuit.
Contrary to what many people believe, there is no “magic formula” for determining the amount of compensation a victim is entitled to in an auto accident case. There are, however, numerous factors that can affect a victim’s recovery. The New York City car accident attorneys at David Resnick & Associates, P.C., understand how each of these factors works together to maximize a victim’s recovery.
How Our New York City Auto Accident Attorneys Will Build Your Case
The first step in maximizing a car accident victim’s recovery is to ensure that all evidence relating to the accident is preserved. Evidence comes in many forms, and all of it may add to the strength of a victim’s case.
Some common forms of evidence that should be preserved in an NYC auto accident case include:
- Physical evidence – Preserving physical evidence may mean taking photos of the damage to the vehicles or securing the vehicles for inspection. While you may need to have your vehicle repaired after an accident, always be sure to take plenty of photographs that include a time and date stamp on them and have one or more professional repair shops provide a detailed written estimate of the damage prior to repairs. Along with photos of the vehicle, you should take photos of yourself if you have obvious physical injuries from the accident.
- Witness statements – Neutral witnesses to an accident can go a long way toward proving negligence, or fault, in an accident. Although a police report may include witness identification and contact information, it is best not to rely on a police report. If you are able to speak to witnesses at the scene of the accident and get contact information, it will likely be very helpful. If not, it may be necessary to send an investigator to try to locate witnesses from nearby establishments or residences to corroborate your version of events.
- Weather and road conditions – Sometimes factors such as road or weather conditions play a role in an auto accident. A poorly designed or maintained roadway, for instance, may have played a role in the accident. Likewise, a malfunctioning traffic light might have triggered a crash. The weather could also be an important factor if another motorist fails to adjust his or her speed for adverse conditions. These potentially relevant conditions must be documented through photos, official reports, or records.
Proving Fault in a New York City Car Accident
In some cases, the cause of the accident is clear to everyone involved. More often than not, though, causation is one of the main issues in a New York City auto accident case. Because the other parties wish to avoid liability, they will ordinarily not admit to causing the accident.
We may use a variety of tools and tactics to prove causation to a jury, including:
- Accident reconstruction experts – Accident reconstruction experts spend a considerable amount of time studying an accident to determine how the accident occurred. An accident reconstruction expert is a highly educated and trained scientist or engineer, as a rule, who can explain to a jury exactly how an accident occurred with a great degree of accuracy.
- Video accident recreation – Often, creating a video that depicts how the accident occurred can help a jury envision what caused the crash and who was to blame.
- Demonstration exhibits – A demonstration exhibit may be a video or audio recording of the conditions just prior to an accident or could include an example of the weather or road conditions existing at the time. Basically, it includes anything that “demonstrates” a factor contributing to the accident for the jury.
- Experimental tests – In some cases, we may be able to present an experimental test to the jury where we recreate conditions that existed at the time of the accident to show what likely occurred.
Some common factors to prove negligence include:
Negligence, or fault, in a New York auto accident, could lie with another motorist, a municipality because of poor road design or maintenance, a vehicle manufacturer, or other parties that contributed to the accident. More than one of these potential parties could share the fault in an accident. To ensure maximum recovery in a car accident, it is imperative to explore the potential liability of all potential defendants in the investigation process.
Auto Accident Injuries
In legal terms, injuries (including pain and suffering and lost wages) are referred to as “damages” in a car accident case. Proving the number, extent, and severity of your damages is crucial to maximizing your recovery. To do this, we may employ medical experts to discuss your physical injuries, as well as to provide us with an estimate of the future medical expenses you are likely to incur as a result of your injuries. We may also use economists and financial experts to discuss the financial impact the crash had on you and your family. Finally, we may turn to life-care planners and psychologists to convince a jury of the pain and suffering you experienced as a result of the collision.
New York Car Accidents Statistics
New York State and New York City record a large number of auto accidents each year. To get a better idea of how dangerous the streets of New York can be, consider the following statistics released by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles for a single recent year:
- There were 304,804 collisions throughout New York State.
- 52,621 of the car crashes were in New York City alone.
- 1,188 people lost their lives in a New York motor vehicle crash, with 281 of those fatalities occurring in New York City.
- There were 169,177 non-fatal injuries reported as a result of crashes throughout New York State.
- 42,062 of those injuries were a result of New York City car collisions.
- Motorcycles were involved in 5,180 crashes in New York State, 1,519 of which happened in New York City.
- There were 6,328 bicycle/vehicle crashes in the state, with 3,927 happening in New York City.
- Pedestrian/vehicle crashes accounted for 16,432 collisions across the state, and more than two-thirds of them, or 11,501, were in the city.
- In New York City alone, 183 pedestrians and 9 bicyclists were killed in motor vehicle accidents.
New York City borough accident statistics:
- 3,828 motorists were injured in Brooklyn
- 3,194 motorists were injured in Queens
- 2,174 motorists were injured in The Bronx
- 1,053 motorists were injured in Manhattan
- And 502 motorists were injured in Staten Island
7 Mistakes to Avoid After an Auto Accident in New York City
Protecting your rights in a car accident claim is very important; it’s crucial to follow a checklist to ensure you’re legal protection.
Here are seven mistakes to avoid so you do not do anything to jeopardize your case:
- Not getting a medical examination. You need to get a medical exam as soon as you can after a crash. Not only could seeing a doctor potentially save your life if you suffered serious injuries with no outward symptoms, but it can also help preserve your right to make a claim. Your doctor needs to document all injuries that you sustained so you will have proof that the injuries resulted from the auto accident.
- Admitting blame. The person who is at fault for causing a car accident could be held responsible for paying for damages that result from the crash. You do not want to tell police or others that you are at fault, even if you believe you did something wrong. There are many factors involved in causing a crash, and all of the evidence may not be apparent to you in the stressful aftermath of the accident. Instead of speculating about fault, provide simple, factual answers to the questions the police ask.
- Not calling the police or notifying your insurer. After an auto accident, you should make two phone calls as soon as possible. The first call should be to the police and the second call should be to your car insurance company. You need to call the police so they can investigate the accident and write a report about what occurred in the crash. This report can be very valuable in case there is a dispute about how the accident happened.
You need to call your insurance company for several reasons. First and foremost, you want to ensure you do not do anything to jeopardize the coverage provided by your insurer. This can be very important even if the other driver was to blame because the other driver might have insufficient insurance or none at all. Your insurer could potentially pay out in such cases through uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.
Another reason to report the accident to your insurer is that New York has no-fault insurance rules. This means that those who suffer “minor” injuries in auto accidents are limited to making a claim with their own insurer for medical costs and lost wages. There is a very limited time frame for getting benefits through no-fault.
- Trusting your or the driver’s insurance company. Many people trust them after a car accident, and some even trust the other driver’s insurer. This is a big mistake. While you purchase an insurance policy to protect you from loss, their goal isn’t to protect you. Instead, they want to pay out the absolute minimum they can – or even pay nothing at all – to protect their bottom line.
Insurance companies try many different tactics in order to pay as little as they possibly can, even when it is clear that an accident claim should be covered. If you trust them, you could end up getting much less compensation than you deserve for your auto accident losses.
The other driver’s insurance agent will most likely pin the accident on you if possible to avoid paying a claim.
They may try to find inconsistencies in your story or try to trip you up when asking you about injuries in order to suggest that you are exaggerating your losses. You should never agree to provide a recorded or written statement to anyone without the advice of a lawyer. The best way to deal with them is to have a lawyer help you with all interactions. With an attorney, you can be sure you have someone looking out for you.
- Signing anything without understanding your legal rights.One of the tactics that insurance companies sometimes employ involves trying to get you to sign something that waives your rights. For example, they might offer you some limited amount of compensation in exchange for signing a release absolving them of liability. If you sign something without understanding it, you could give up some of the money or benefits that the law entitles you to.
- Settling your claim before you know the full extent of your injuries.When you contact a car accident attorney in New York to settle your claim, you need to sign a release of liability in exchange for receiving an agreed-upon amount of compensation. Once you sign a release of liability, you are barred from making any additional claims based on the accident. It doesn’t matter if your injuries turn out to be more severe than you thought – you have already given up your rights to pursue additional compensation by signing a release. In many cases, what first appear to be minor injuries turn out to be more serious or long-lasting. You should always be sure that you have a clear understanding of all medical problems resulting from the crash before you settle.
- Not contacting an attorney. Car accident claims are complex, especially with New York’s no-fault system. You need to have an experienced advocate who understands the law and who can advise you on how best to proceed with your auto accident claim. Your attorney can be an advocate who takes on the insurance company on your behalf. Those companies have lawyers and experts representing their interests, and you deserve to have a New York City car accident lawyer stand up for your rights.
Our Attorney Also Focuses on The Following Areas in Car Accident:
Call Our New York City Auto Accident Lawyer to Help You Recover Maximum Compensation
If you have been injured as a result of a New York City auto accident, or have lost a close relative in a car accident, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries or your loss.
Maximizing your recovery is crucial for both you and your family to ensure that you are compensated for the full financial and emotional impact of the collision.
The New York City auto accident attorneys at David Resnick & Associates, P.C., represent car accident victims in New York. For a free initial evaluation of your case, contact the firm today by calling 212-279-2000 or filling out our online contact form. The aftermath of an auto accident can be a challenging time for a victim, which is why you need an experienced attorney.
Car Accidents Resources:
The Following Are Questions Frequently Asked By Clients Who Have Been Involved In Car Accidents:
What should I do if I am involved in a car accident?
One of the best things you can do is to acquaint yourself ahead of time with the best steps to take when you have an accident. Click to read our car accident checklist.
What happens if you don’t report an accident within 24 hours?
We recommend calling the police at the scene of the accident. After assessing the accident and verifying the health of all involved, this should be your course of action. Some states give you up to 10 days from the date of the accident to file a report; this includes New York. However, it is best to have the police rush to the scene. We strongly recommend that you call the police when you, the other party and witnesses are present.
New York State law requires you to contact the police “as soon as possible.” If you don’t have a cell phone, use your cell phone to report or borrow one. Or you can use the nearest public phone. If these options are not available, you can drive to the nearest police station (if your car is available). If this is not possible, the last option is to call the police as soon as you get home. If the passenger is in the car, you can also file a report. If you are not the owner, so is the owner. However, the 10-day rule still applies to these situations.
You must also report any vehicle accidents to DMV within 10 days and report to your insurance company within 24 hours. This has nothing to do with submitting a police report. Some people think that DMV or their insurance company will contact the police and the police will submit a report. This is not the case. You should contact the police at the scene of the accident.
What happens if you don’t call the police after an accident?
You are required by law to file a police report, particularly in certain circumstances. This includes if one car was considerably damaged or one or more people were hurt or killed. Not doing so could result in a fine or even jail time.
I have heard New York is a “no fault” state. What does that mean?
In a “no fault” state, your own insurance company pays for your injuries and damages (up to preset policy limits) regardless of which driver is at fault for the accident. In some states, who pays for the expenses related to the accident is determined by who caused the accident. “No fault” laws are intended to lower insurance rates and reduce the time it takes to get payment for your damages.
What if my insurance won’t cover all my expenses for my injuries and the damage to my car?
If the accident was the other driver’s fault, then you can make a case that the other driver’s insurance should pay your expenses. In New York, you can sue the other driver if your case meet certain conditions. The best way to determine if your injuries qualify for additional compensation is to consult an experienced car accident attorney. Click for more information on New York car accident insurance.
Do I absolutely need to contact a lawyer after a traffic accident?
Although you may be able to handle your claim without the help of an auto accident attorney, it will be much harder to do so. Automobile accident lawyers have invaluable experience dealing with insurance companies, accident investigations, witness interviews and settlements. You should definitely contact a car accident lawyer if the injuries were serious, likely to be permanent, or resulted in a loved one’s death. An attorney should also be consulted if fault is not a clear issue, the police report is incorrect, the limits of your liability insurance are low, you have no insurance or your insurance company involves its own attorney in your case.
How soon after my accident should I contact a lawyer?
If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, you have a limited amount of time in which to file a claim. This time period, known as a statute of limitations, varies from claim to claim and from state to state. In New York, the deadline is generally three years from the time of the accident. If you miss the deadline, you may be unable to recover compensation for your injury. This is one reason why it is so important to talk with a lawyer as soon as you suffer an injury.
Why do so many traffic accidents occur?
New York City has the highest rate of traffic accidents in the state of New York. Given typical driving conditions in the city and the millions of drivers, this is not surprising. While some accidents are unavoidable, the majority of traffic accidents happen because drivers are behaving carelessly. Many drivers are distracted by other activities and may not be paying full attention to the road. They may be talking to passengers, eating, drinking or talking on cell phones. Drivers are also distracted by numerous technological devices, such as navigation systems and DVD players. Even when drivers are paying attention, they may make improper turns, fail to obey traffic signals, speed or drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In those situations, they may be liable when they cause an accident. Some car wrecks are caused by bad weather and poorly designed or maintained roads. Accidents can also occur due to defective car designs or defective parts, such as faulty car tires. In those instances, a product liability lawsuit may arise against the carmaker or tire manufacturer.
Should I say that a traffic accident was my fault?
Even though New York is technically a “no fault” state, you should not volunteer such information. If you have serious injuries due to the other driver’s actions, you do not want to damage your case by initially claiming that the accident was your own fault. Even if you think you were at fault, you may find out later that the other driver was as much or more at fault. You should first talk to a lawyer who has extensive experience with automobile accident claims and personal injury cases.
Do I have to wear a helmet when riding my motorcycle?
Motorcycle accidents tend to result in severe injuries due to the fact that, by design, motorcycles are unable to provide much protection. Head injuries are the leading cause of death from motorcycle crashes, which has led many states to enact helmet laws. The laws of New York require that a helmet and eye protection be worn at all times while riding a motorcycle.
How can I be more noticeable when riding my motorcycle?
Choose riding gear that will increase your visibility in addition to providing you protection in the event of a crash. Wear brightly colored clothing. Leather clothing such as a jacket provides some protection to skin during a spill. Use reflective materials on your clothing, motorcycle and the helmet, especially at night. In New York, riders are required to have a 4-inch square of reflective material on the back of their helmets.