While most drivers strive to be careful and safe behind the wheel, not every driver respects this responsibility on the road. With so many cars and drivers in New York, accidents are inevitable. In 2014, the latest year for which statistics are available, the New York Department of Motor Vehicles reports there were over 299,000 car crashes in the state. These accidents included 966 fatal crashes and over 118,000 crashes that caused injuries to drivers and passengers. In many of the crashes, the failure of a driver to make a responsible choice behind the wheel led directly to the pain and injury of another. In the cases of these preventable crashes, the state of New York recognizes that accident victims should not have to carry the burdens associated with the accident alone. Victims are entitled to file a legal claim to hold the responsible party accountable and to seek compensation to meet the medical, emotional, and financial demands of recovery.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a car accident in New York, you may be eligible to file a claim. Call Oginski Law to speak with experienced attorney Gerry Oginski at 516.487.8207. He can answer your questions and help you understand your rights under the law.
How New York Car Accidents Rules Are Different Than Other States’
New York, like a handful of other states, is what is known as a “no-fault” state when it comes to car insurance. In a no-fault state, anyone who is involved in a car crash must turn first to their own insurance company to pay for the costs associated with the accident, including medical bills, lost wages, and more. This is true regardless of who was at fault for the accident, hence the no-fault moniker. No-fault insurance does not provide compensation for pain and suffering, and many claims are handled exclusively by one’s own insurance company.
However, there are cases in which the victim can move outside the no-fault system to file a liability or personal injury claim against the person responsible for the accident. These claims do allow victims to recover compensation for a wider range of expenses than the typical insurance policy. Some states determine when this is appropriate with a monetary threshold. New York has set a “serious injury” threshold, which sets the standards to allow a victim to file a claim. A serious injury in New York includes:
- Significant disfigurement
- Bone fracture
- Permanent injury that limits use of an organ or limb
- Significant limitation of body function or system
- Full disability for 90 days
Within these guidelines, the definitions can be rather vague. Often, it is incumbent on the victim to show how the injuries warrant a legal claim. A skilled attorney can help accident victims evaluate their unique situation and decide how to best move forward with a claim. New York lawyer Gerry Oginski has been helping individuals hurt in car accidents pursue these cases for years. He brings a thorough knowledge of state law and an understanding of what it takes to mount a successful case. If you have questions about your potential claim, call his Great Neck office today at 516.487.8207 to learn more.
What Kinds of Compensation Is Available to New York Car Accident Victims?
When filing a personal injury claim after a car accident, victims can obtain compensation to cover a number of situations. Victims can be awarded money by the court or accept a settlement offer to cover:
- Medical bills. All costs associated with the treatment of the injury may be covered. This could include hospital stays, surgery and other procedures, medications, therapies, and more.
- Future medical bills. In some cases, the injuries are likely to necessitate continuing medical care. Victims can obtain compensation to provide for expected future care.
- Lost wages and benefits. Often, injuries will force a victim to miss work and lose valuable income. In some cases, the injury will prevent a person from returning to work entirely. Compensation can be awarded for the loss of that income and any associated benefits.
- Property loss. Property that was lost or damaged in the accident can be repaired or replaced, as appropriate.
- Pain and suffering. Victims can obtain compensation for the pain and suffering they experience as a result of the accident. This can include physical pain and mental or emotional anguish.
Call This Experienced New York Car Accident Attorney Today
We’ve all seen those irresponsible drivers race down the road, or we know someone who has suffered when another driver acted negligently. If you have the unfortunate experience of being involved in a car crash, you can suffer any number of physical and emotional injuries, and you should not have to face those consequences alone. Sadly, though, at every step along the process, others will be out to protect their own interest and their own bottom line.
That’s where experienced lawyer Gerry Oginski can help. A passionate advocate for New York victims, he has been working to protect the rights and obtain just compensation for victims for the past 16 years. Gerry started out his career defending insurance companies, so he has a full understanding of their goals and their tactics, which he can use to help you negotiate the maximum settlement you deserve. If your case has to go to court, Gerry’s guidance can help you present the most comprehensive case possible. He can help you locate physical evidence, obtain medical records, secure expert witnesses, file appropriate court documents, and offer your case at trial.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a car accident, don’t delay in getting the help and advice you need today. New York victims have just three years from the date of the accident to file a claim. After that time, the courts may refuse to hear the case. Call Oginski Law today to learn more about your legal options at 516.487.8207, or take a moment to fill out our online contact form for a prompt, personal response.