Car accidents can happen for a variety of reasons. While the liable party is usually another driver, you may also have claims against the state, the five boroughs, or other government agencies responsible for maintaining roads that have dangerous conditions such as potholes or failing traffic signals.
An insurance company is the first place you will turn to after a crash. However, the company is going to do everything they can to avoid paying you the full amount you deserve.
1. Know Your Rights
In New York, it is vital that car accident victims know their rights and act accordingly after a crash. While the majority of car accidents in New York are minor fender benders, some cause severe injuries and permanent damage to property. These situations often require access to compensatory damages for medical bills, lost income, and other losses. Unless a victim knows their rights, it may be difficult to obtain these funds through an insurance claim or lawsuit.
New York law states that drivers must stop after a crash and exchange information with other parties. This includes identifying their driver’s license, insurance information, and vehicle registration. This ensures that all parties involved in a crash receive the compensation they need. It also makes it easier to identify a negligent party if they flee the scene.
It is also important for car accident victims to seek medical treatment immediately after a collision. Doing so will help confirm the severity of their injuries and establish a correlation between their injuries and the crash. It will also provide documentation that could be used to pursue a settlement or verdict in court.
A New York car accident lawyer will be able to explain the various types of damages available for victims. They will be able to help them calculate the total costs of their losses and determine the best way to recover those amounts.
2. Contact an Attorney
Driving is a necessary part of life in New York, and while everyone strives to be safe on the road, accidents are not uncommon. Most car crashes are minor and result in a few repairs and the involvement of insurance companies, but some can be much more serious. In these cases, it is important to hire an attorney to make sure you are properly compensated for your injuries and losses.
An experienced New York car accident attorney will be familiar with the state’s unique laws regarding car accident compensation. The attorney will also be aware of how to evaluate the extent of your losses and injuries and what types of damages you may be entitled to. This can include things like lost income, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.
In addition to evaluating your damages, the attorney will help you get the best possible settlement from the insurance company. They will do this by consulting with medical experts, accountants, and actuaries. This will ensure that they are calculating not only your current costs but also your expected future expenses.
It is also important to note that if you are involved in a car accident with an uninsured driver, you can still seek compensation. Every car insurance policy sold in New York must contain a portion that covers the driver and any passengers for injuries caused by an uninsured motorist.
3. Do Not Give a Statement to the Insurance Company
The insurance company may ask you to give a recorded statement about the accident. It’s important to know that anything you say can and will be used against you in court. Insurance adjusters are skilled at asking questions that seem innocent enough but are designed to lead you into saying something that will hurt your case later. They will try to get you to admit that your injuries were not as severe as they are or that you weren’t driving recklessly when the crash occurred.
If you are asked to give a statement, talk with your attorney first. An experienced New York car accident lawyer can help you decide whether or not it’s appropriate to provide a statement or not. They will also help you understand your role in the crash and how much fault you might share for the accident.
A good car accident lawyer will help you recover the full amount of your economic damages, including your medical bills and lost wages. They will also advise you if your non-economic damages are worth pursuing. New York is one of a few states that allow you to pursue compensation for harms that are not easily measured in dollars, such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. A car accident lawyer will advise you if your injuries meet the threshold for a claim for non-economic damages.
4. Hire an Attorney Right Away
Car accidents can be stressful, especially when you are dealing with severe injuries and property damage. In many cases, you will be required to file a claim with an insurance company to obtain compensation for the damages you are facing as a result of the crash. This can prove difficult to do, as the insurer may try to complicate matters or make it hard for you to receive the reasonable compensation you deserve.
A lawyer can assist you in the process of filing a car accident claim, and will help to guide you down the right path. They can also protect you from making mistakes that could hurt your case, such as missing the statute of limitations or misfiling a claim.
The other reason why you need to hire a New York City car accident attorney is that they can handle the complicated legalities involved with an injury lawsuit. There are specific rules that you must follow in order to recover the money you are owed, including the statute of limitations.
Additionally, if you suffer an injury from the crash that is not covered by your car insurance policy, you can still recover from another source. The attorney you hire can help you identify the other parties that may be responsible for your injuries and property damage. This can include manufacturers of vehicles, as well as manufacturers of parts and equipment that are designed to fail.