For drivers in most New York vehicle accidents, injury claims are made against their own auto insurance policy. Under this no-fault law, it does not matter who was responsible for the collision. However, personal injury actions are allowed for claims involving serious injuries or death. Serious injuries include fractures, significant limitation of a body function, and injuries that impair the victim's ability to function normally for at least half of the six months following the accident. In these cases, the other driver can be sued for damages including pain and suffering, which are not available in no-fault claims.
Like other personal injury lawsuits, filing an auto accident claim must occur within three years after the accident happened or it will be barred by the statute of limitations. This three-year rule also applies to property damage suits.
New York's pure comparative negligence doctrine often leads to verdicts that reflect shared responsibility for the accident damages. If one driver runs a red light while the other is slightly distracted, a jury or judge determines the extent to which each party is at fault. From there, a recovery by the distracted driver would be reduced by the percentage of responsibility that they bear. If the distracted driver is ruled to be 20 percent responsible, a $100,000 damage award would be cut to $80,000.
If you have been hurt in an auto accident, Goldberg Sager & Associates, Attorneys at Law can help you seek a fair recovery for your injuries and property damage. To schedule a consultation with an experienced Brooklyn accident attorney, call 347.497.3245 or contact us online.