Frekhtman & Associates represents victims of car accident injuries within New York State. We have successfully assisted victims injured throughout New York City, Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn in some of the top verdicts and settlements, including a trial jury verdict that awarded $69,225,000. If you or a loved one has been affected by a car accident, regardless of whether it was a small fracture or wrongful death, consult with our experienced and knowledgeable trial attorneys to see how they can help your case. Automobile accidents not only involve personal injury law, but insurance law as well. In New York State, it is mandatory to have auto liability coverage, personal injury protection (PIP), and uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage. In order to receive any compensation, you need proper representation.
Whenever involved in a car accident in New York, never leave the scene and always remain until the police have arrived. Clearly and briefly explain the circumstances surrounding the accident to the officer. The information from the police accident report will include important insurance information pertinent to your case. You will also want to document the position of the vehicles, damage to the vehicles, skid marks, and any apparent injuries via photograph if you are capable of doing so.
If you suspect you have an injury, visit and inform a doctor as soon as possible. In many cases, injuries will not develop until weeks or months after an accident and insurance companies frequently argue that the injuries you are suffering from are unrelated to the accident.
It is also important to contact your insurance company to let them know you have met with a doctor. If you do not disclose this information, they may try to disclaim coverage and refuse to pay for a claim.
In New York State, there are laws that prohibit a person injured in a car accident from recovering any compensation unless they file certain documentation within set deadlines. On a typical negligence case involving a car accident, you have three years from the date of the incident to make a claim. Anything past that date will be dismissed.
If you need to apply for no-fault benefits, you must do so within 30 days of the accident. These benefits allow the insurance company to pay for expenses related to your accident regardless of who is at fault. If not submitted on time, the insurance company may deny payments.
If you are involved in an accident with a New York City police car, ambulance, fire truck, sanitation truck, or other agency vehicle, you must file a lawsuit within one year and 90 days of the accident date.
Additionally, a Notice of Claim must be filed within 90 days of the accident to notify the city or its agencies of the facts and circumstances surrounding your case.
At Frekhtman & Associates, we seek to help our clients navigate the complicated aspects of New York car accident laws and regulations.
Without adequate representation, the insurance companies will seek ways to invalidate your car accident claim and not help cover expenses related to the accident.
Check to see if the other driver or passengers in either vehicle need immediate medical attention. If so, call 911 before doing anything else.
Check the extent of the damages to both vehicles. If the vehicles are endangering or seriously impeding traffic and can be moved to a safe area, do so. Otherwise, leave the vehicles where there are until the police arrive.
Regardless of how minor an accident may appear on first inspection, it is critically important that you call the police. Many insurance companies will refuse to honor a claim without a police accident report. The police will also be able to better evaluate the need for medical assistance, which can protect both drivers against future medical claims.
Nearly everyone has a cellphone with a built-in camera – use this to take pictures of both vehicles and the accident scene as soon as possible after the accident, preferably while both vehicles are still in the same position they where in after the accident. Also, when exchanging personal information with the other driver, take photographs of the other driver’s insurance card and driver’s license. Why simply write this information down when you can have photographic records of both critical documents? This documentation can be critically important if there is any dispute over responsibility for the accident.
Talk to anyone nearby who may have witnessed the accident. If they did, get statements from them as well as contact information. This will be very valuable information if your insurance company has any follow-up questions for them.
Under no circumstances should you admit any fault in the accident to police or to the other driver. Limit any conversation with the other driver to only that which is necessary to get their personal information, and only give police what is needed to complete the accident report. Also, as harsh as it sounds, you should never apologize to the other driver. This could later be construed as an admission of responsibility for the accident, and could have serious financial and legal repercussions for you.
In an ideal world, insurance companies would simply pay for an accident claim, and for any related incidental cost such as medical care or car rentals once legal responsibility has been established by the police. Unfortunately, this is not an ideal world, and insurance companies are more interested in denying claims and protecting their bottom line than in taking care of your needs. For this reason, it is very important that you contact an attorney as soon as possible after an automobile accident. This is equally important whether you caused the accident or the other driver caused it.
Contact us today for more information on what to do after an automobile collision, truck accident, or for assistance with any other legal matters you may have.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in New York, contact our attorneys today at (866) ATTY-LAW.