Are you a victim of car accident in New York? If so, it is important to note that the defense will try to limit their liability by proving that the plaintiff shares responsibility in the accident. Thus, it would be very helpful that you know about the defenses the opposing side may employ to weaken and invalidate your case.
Every person on the road is expected to practice due diligence to protect their own safety and that of others. Instances when a victim may be considered negligent include speeding while driving, riding with someone they know is unfit for driving, or being in a car they know to be defective, distracting the driver of the car, making unexpected movements as a pedestrian, and others.
In the state of New York, fault is divided among parties involved in the case, whether part of the lawsuit or not. The local law tells what percentage of the verdict may be recovered from each at-fault party, taking the victim’s liability share for the accident into regard. It applies even during your negotiation with an insurance company.
Here’s an illustration of how the rule works:
King is making a left turn and hits Lallie, who happens to be jaywalking. Lallie sustains traumatic brain injury so she decides to sue King for negligence. It may be found that King is 70% at fault for the accident. Meanwhile, Lallie shares 30% of the fault for crossing the street despite the red light. If the total compensation/verdict amounts to $200,000, Lallie only gets $140,000 (full compensation less 30%).
In New York, claimant’s injuries may include bone fracture, disfigurement, limitation of the use of an organ/ bodily function, substantially full disability etc. The complaint must be filed within a window of three years from the occurrence of the accident, as set by the statutes of limitations, or else it becomes invalid.
According to a Brooklyn personal injury lawyer, another factor affecting the value of a suit is the victim’s failure to mitigate the damage they’ve sustained. EnlightenMe.com lists failure to get timely medical care as one of the top mistakes car accident victims make. Not following the prescribed medication, engaging in activities that worsen the injury, as well as not keeping track of one’s medical diagnoses and bills are also mistakes that reduce compensation.
If you are a victim, injury lawyers from Brooklyn firms like The Law Offices of Joseph M. Lichtenstein who possess years of experience handling suits of such type, can help you determine the worth of your case. They can also help you win favorable terms for compensation should the case go to the negotiating table.
(Source: Top 10 Mistakes People Make After a Car Accident Injury, EnlightenMe.com)