Auto accidents can be life changing events for many individuals who suffer long-term injuries. They can also be complicated legal issues as well when there are multiple vehicles involved. Each driver will hopefully also have insurance protection, which means that each driver will have a personal insurance company legal team that is trying to protect the interests of the insurance company bottom line and their client. Many insurance companies thoroughly investigate all auto accident claims looking for any technicality that they could use as a defense in a legal filing. And, the investigation intensifies if the insurance adjuster thinks the claimant will not retain a lawyer. This potential for a strongly defended personal injury claim exists in practically every injury situation. That is why having your own Staten Island car accident lawyer representing your case is vital.
Negotiating an Equitable Settlement
One of the most complicated and frustrating elements of dealing with an insurance company adjuster personally is arriving at a settlement. Many times insurance companies will be reluctant to agree to begin insurance coverage if they think they can settle a case quickly for a lower amount if the claimant does not retain an attorney. Your Staten Island car accident lawyer is a trained professional negotiator as well, and can contest any typical “bad faith” bargaining tactic by the insurance adjuster. Insurance adjusters commonly attempt to use comparative negligence as a defense, which essentially is an assessment of the injured plaintiff’s contribution to the accident causation. This is not necessarily a problem for injured passengers, but injured drivers could have difficulty negotiating a settlement when the insurance adjuster is over-estimating the driver’s personal negligence.
Establishing Your Legal Claim
Regardless of whether you were driving or just a passenger in a vehicle involved in a crash, the process is essentially the same. Your Staten Island car accident lawyer must present documentation that you were injured in the crash and the injury was the result of the negligence of the respondent. In some cases, there could be multiple negligent actors as well, such as when being involved in a wreck with a commercial vehicle making both the driver and shipping company potentially liable. The initial proceeding establishes standing to sue for personal injury damages.
Gross Negligence and Punitive Damages
Typical injury claims that can be calculated in terms of discreet dollars are termed as compensatory damages, including non-economic damages for pain and suffering due to the injury. However, when an insurance company bargains in bad faith as determined by the court or the driver intentionally causes the accident, the opportunity for punitive damages could be available. Punitive damages can only be awarded by a jury, which means that receiving an equitable and maximum damage award will require taking the injury claim to a full jury trial. Of course, taking a case to a jury trial always requires an experienced and aggressive Staten Island car accident lawyer who can demonstrate gross negligence on the part of the driver, and potentially prove “bad faith” regarding insurance company unwillingness to negotiate fairly and timely.
The novice injured accident victim often does not realize the true value of their injury claim because of certain factors with each accident. Serious car crashes could result in catastrophic injury coverage as well as product liability claims. Vehicles components malfunction regularly on the highways, but it always takes an in-depth investigation to reveal product liability. Product manufacturers are held to strict liability when their products do not operate properly and your lawyer will not need to prove direct negligence by the manufacturer.
Anyone in the Staten Island area who has been involved in an auto accident should contact us for a full free case evaluation. It is never a good decision to handle your accident injury claim personally, and we will be able to conduct a full investigation for your damage recovery potential.
Each time you enter your car to take even a short drive, you put your life at risk. It’s not something many people think about as car accidents aren’t as widely reported as other accidents, but vehicles are the most dangerous form of transportation in the country. Car accidents are small, have relatively little effect on many people, and they simply don’t garner much attention unless there are many deaths or serious injuries suffered by someone famous. It’s plane accidents, boating accidents, and train crashes that make the news with their multiple deaths and infrequent occurrences.
Being in the car accident is terrifying. It’s confusing for most people, and those with injuries suffer for days, weeks, months, and even the rest of their lives depending on the type of injuries they sustain. If you or your loved ones are injured or killed in a car accident, don’t wait to call an experienced Staten Island car accident attorney. Aside from handling the legalese on your behalf, our friendly staff helps you understand what damages you’re entitled to, how the process works, and what you can do to help improve your future despite your current state of worry and uncertainty.
What Staten Island Car Accident Attorneys Do
Our clients come to us in a time of confusion and fear, and we help them understand the statute of limitations in car accident injury cases in New York. You have three years from the date of the accident to file a complaint against the party at fault, and then the statute ends and you cannot sue any longer.
When a client comes to us with the suspicion they were involved in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, we work to prove it’s true. We begin with the accident report filed by the police. We take witness statements recorded by the police, we analyze them, and we have professionals go over photos to recreate the scene of the accident. It’s the job of the attorney to prove the accident was caused by someone else, and that the injuries the victim or victims suffered is a direct result of their breach of duty.
– Distracted driving
– Driving under the influence
– Not obeying speed limit signs
– Not stopping for lights or signs
– Not using turn signals
– Equipment failure
– Vehicle manufacture defects
Someone else could have caused the accident that injured you, even if it was caused driving through a construction site without adequate warning signs and your vehicle was the only one involved. Once a breach of duty to care is proven, damages are discussed.
Damages from Car Accidents
Not every car accident victim is injured severely. In many Staten Island car accidents, fender benders do little more than scratch a bumper in slow traffic, drive-thru lines, or in parking lots. In many cases, however, car accident victims are injured severely and their lives change.
– Broken bones
– Spinal cord injuries
– Brain injuries
When this occurs, victims incur many medical bills, they’re unable to work, and their future becomes uncertain in many ways. Damages are paid to the victim by the party at fault or their insurance company. These damages are designed to help victims pay for the medical bills they’ve incurred since their injuries were sustained, and to help pay for the medical care the victim might need for the rest of their lives.
– Medical expenses
– Loss of wages
– Loss of ability to work
– Pain and suffering
– Long-term medical care
– Wrongful death
It’s no one’s first instinct to seek legal counsel when a car accident occurs. There are police reports, accident reports, hospital paperwork, and many serious injuries with which to contend first and foremost. When this calms down and the shock of an accident beings to wear off, it’s time to contact an experienced car accident attorney in Staten Island. Our legal team works with our clients to ensure they are given a fair chance at being able to get through their life without the financial ramifications of a car accident. Let our legal experts help your family recover.
How long will it take to get money in my case?
One of the first questions that many people ask when entering a personal injury claim is; “how long will this claim take?” There is no definitive answer to that question. All claims are different and there are various issues within the claims. We must consider all the facts before making a personal injury claim. Sure, we understand that you need money to pay for medical bills and cover lost wages. However, we don’t want to rush these proceedings. It is important that every step of the process is covered correctly.
Establishing Grounds For A Case
We, typically, look at two things to establish grounds for a case. First, the liability is accessed, and then the medical evidence is evaluated. When dealing with liability, the other party must be guilty of causing the accident. Who did the police cite for the incident? Were there any witnesses? With regard to the medical evidence, we must be able to prove that the accident in question caused your medical injuries. Any previous injuries will be used by the opposition to discredit or claim. We will use medical reports to assess the damage you have been caused from the wreck.
Be Careful When Settling A Claim Too Quickly
There is no reason to settle your claim until a full recovery is made. If you have obtained life-altering injuries, then you need to recover as well as can be expected. We will need a report from an independent medical expert that confirms the extent of the injuries, and we need to know when you are likely to recover. It is important to wait to settle the claim as medical bills can still be mounting. Once we settle, and you receive a compensation package. From that point forward, any further medical bills will be your responsibility. After a case is settled, you cannot go back and add anything to it.
To calculate how much you will get for your pain and suffering, we use a report that is prepared by a medical expert. This report will compare your injuries with clients in previously settled cases with injuries like your own. The Judicial Council guidelines are also a great reference for determining how much a claim is worth. The general rule is that the more complex the injuries, the longer it takes to settle the case. This is because it takes longer to get all the medical expert evidence. The opposition may also want a medical expert of their own to give a report on your injuries.
The More Severe The Case, The Longer The Case Takes
It takes time for the more severe cases to reach a point of settlement. However, it is not uncommon to request interim payments to help you cover things like lost wages. As the case continues to process, it is understandable that you may suffer financially from being off from work. These interim payments are an advance payment of the final compensation of your case. At the end, it will be deducted from the compensation package. For instance, if your claim fronted you $3,000 for lost wages, and your total payout was $15,000, then you would receive $12,000 at the end of the case.
Responsibility and Acknowledging Liability
Responsibility may be acknowledged straight away by your Opponent. Once this happens, then the claim can progress in a forthright style. Nevertheless, if accountability is fought, and your Opponent is disagreeing that you or someone else was responsible for the accident, then comprehensive arguments are expected to be bartered between numerous legal councils.
As part of the research into the liability, it may be essential to get witness accounts, review extensive documents or closed circuit footage. Contingent upon the strength of the existing evidence and the difficulty of the matters, liability deliberations do not happen overnight. There are usually many discussions, which in turn may increase the time it takes to settle your case.
Personal Injury Settlement Negotiations
When definite medical evidence has been attained and evidence collected in a provision of your other ‘special damages’, your attorney may be in a place to start settlement negotiations. It is vital to note that Court proceedings must be issued within three years of the accident date, so this is typically the last backstop date in any discussions.
So, giving a definitive answer on how long your case will take is next to impossible. Like every other case, you must go through all the steps, and make sure that you give each part of the judicial practice is given adequate attention.