Even when you know that car accidents are a serious problem throughout the US, you may not fully understand the dangers until you review the facts. According to New York State Motor Vehicle Crash Data, there are more than 447,000 motor vehicle collisions every year, 881 of which are fatal. Another 121,068 crashes cause injury to at least one person, leading to substantial losses for the victims and families. Though you have legal remedies to recover compensation for these losses, you may not be aware of the complicated laws and rules that apply to your case.
It may come as some relief to know that you can trust a New York car accident attorney to obtain monetary damages for your physical, financial, and emotional losses. However, knowledge is power when it comes to your claim, so you might benefit from reviewing five important laws that affect your rights.
- You have to prove four elements to recover compensation for your losses. Most auto crashes occur because of driver negligence, which has a special meaning in the legal field. Your right to obtain monetary damages depends upon having solid evidence of the four essential elements of a negligence case, which are:
- You need to show that the responsible motorist had a legal duty to drive safely;
- You must prove that he or she breached this duty through careless acts;
- You have to establish a causal link between the breach and the accident, such that it would not have happened but for the breach; and,
- You must show that you suffered losses because of your injuries.
- There are many different types of monetary damages available for victims. If you can prove the above essential elements, you can recover a wide range of damages to recoup your losses. Compensation is meant to reimburse you and make you as whole as possible after sustaining auto collision injuries, so you may be eligible for:
- Your medical costs for treatment;
- Lost wages; and,
- Pain and suffering, which is based upon how your injuries have impacted your quality of life.
- Not complying with legal deadlines could act as a bar to your claim. The New York statute of limitations for personal injury cases applies to car accidents, so you have three years to file a lawsuit in court. The clock starts to run the date of the crash, and it is not affected by any settlement negotiations you may be discussing with the responsible driver’s insurance company.
- You could have legal options if you lost a loved one in a car accident. You may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim after losing a family member in a fatal vehicle collision. It is possible to recover damages based upon how your loved one’s death impacts your personal losses.
- New York has a contributory negligence statute. By law, your compensation could be reduced if you were partly at fault in causing the accident. The contributory negligence statute applies to decrease your monetary damages according to the proportion of fault attributable to your actions.
Talk to Our New York Auto Crash Attorneys About Legal Issues
These are just a few of the many laws that apply to motor vehicle collision cases, but there are many others that can impact your claim. You put your rights at risk and may be undercompensated if you try to go it alone, so trust our team at The Mandel Law Firm to handle the legal details. To learn more about how we can help, please call (646) 770-3868 or go online to set up a free consultation at our Manhattan office.