Manhattan is a crowded part of the city and it’s common for accidents to occur. These accidents range from minor fender benders to serious events that result in severe injuries. If you or a loved one is involved in a car accident in the city, a Manhattan car accident lawyer can offer assistance.
According to the New York City Police Department, there are thousands of accidents per month in the city. In October 2015 alone there were more than 4600 accidents, a quarter of which involved unfocused and distracted drivers.
New York is an active, bustling city and it’s easy to get distracted while driving. This is in addition to the usual distractions drivers encounter on every road across the country.
Working with a Manhattan car accident lawyer after a collision might help you clarify your situation and determine what to do next.
In addition to physical injuries, there are other things to consider after a collision.
- Many people experience trauma symptoms that require long-term counseling after a wreck.
- Others are forced to miss time from work and earn less while they recover.
- Still others never recover fully from their injuries and are forced to earn less throughout the course of their lives than they would have had it the accident not occurred.
- Most accident victim also experience pain and suffering after their accident, even when their injuries aren’t severe.
A Manhattan car accident attorney understands the aftermath of a vehicle collision and might be able to help you.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact a Manhattan car accident attorney for more information.
New York is a No-Fault State
New York is a no-fault state. This means an accident victim is able to recover expenses from their own insurance company, as well as the insurance company representing the driver who caused the collision. However, no-fault insurance laws do not apply to bodily injuries, which require plaintiffs to meet certain requirements.
There are exceptions to the no-fault guidelines that allow an injured person to bring a third-party car insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit in New York. To do so, you must qualify under the “serious injury” threshold, which means you’ve experienced any of the following because of the car accident:
- Significant disfigurement
- Bone fracture
- Permanent limitation of use of body organ or member
- Significant limitation of use of body function or system
- Full disability for at least 90 days
If any of the above applies, a plaintiff can hold the at-fault driver responsible for an accident and pursue compensation for all categories of losses, including pain and suffering and other non-economic damages.
What to Consider When Hiring a Manhattan Car Accident Attorney
There are several things you should consider before hiring a Manhattan car accident attorney. For instance:
- Consider the experience of the lawyer and how much of that experience specifically deals with car accidents.
- Review testimonials from previous clients. Don’t assume a single negative remark is a justification for not working with an attorney, but if there is a pattern of problems, you might want to look elsewhere.
- Many personal injury attorneys are part of a larger law firm. You might not work with the specific person with whom you initially meet, so make sure you determine how your case will be handled within the firm. You should evaluate the staff, not just the single lawyer with whom you initially consult.
- Ask about the attorney’s membership in local and state bar associations.
- Ask how many auto accidents settle before they go to trial. The majority of cases do settle out of court, but it’s important to assess an attorney’s views on settlements.
- Request information about the lawyer’s current caseload. Lawyers typically work with more than one client at a time, but if someone is already overwhelmed with work, your case might not get the attention it deserves.
- Consider your comfort level with the attorney. It’s important to work with someone with whom you are at ease and able to speak candidly and openly with.
Filing a Timely Manhattan Car Accident Lawsuit
One of the most important factors you need to consider when filing a Manhattan car accident lawsuit is the statute of limitations. This is the time limit the state sets for filing a complaint against a defendant after an event.
Statutes of limitations vary based on the location and details of the case. There can also be a variation based on whether the crash caused property damages or resulted in injuries or death.
In most Manhattan car accident cases, the statute of limitations is three years. This means anyone injured in a car accident, be they a passenger, driver, pedestrian, bicyclist, motorcyclist, or anyone else on the road, has just three years to file a legal claim from the date of the event.
Fatal accidents operate on a slightly different timeline. If a person’s injuries in an accident prove fatal, his or her family have two years from the date of death to file a claim. Keep in mind, the date of death can be the same or different than the date of the crash.
If you try to file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations has expired, the court can refuse to hear the case.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in Manhattan, contact us for more information