Texting Has Changed How We Communicate And Drive
The first text message was sent on December 3rd, 1992. Since then, it has become one of the most commonly used forms of electronic communication. A frightening 77% of drivers believe that they can safely drive while texting, but statistics show us that this belief is false. Texting while driving increases the chance of being involved in a car accident by twenty-three times. Nearly 1.6 million car accidents are attributed to cell phone use every year.
How Do I Know If The Other Driver Was Texting?
Determining if the other driving was texting may be difficult. It is possible that they will admit to it when the police arrive on the scene of the accident and take statements from all passengers and drivers. But most often this information comes from witnesses to the accident.
In some cases, if you suspect that the person who hit you was texting, it may be possible for an attorney to obtain copies of their cell phone records which may provide the evidence you need to prove they were distracted at the time of the accident. It is important that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible after the accident.
Can An Attorney Really Help Me?
Yes. A car accident attorney can help you navigate the confusing time following an accident, help you deal with insurance companies, and help you to recover financial compensation for your losses. You don’t have to do this alone.
New York City alone saw over 220, 000 car accidents between March 2014 and April 2015, with the largest percentage of accidents being caused by driver distraction. The period of time after a car accident can be overwhelming and confusing, so you want to have someone with experience to help guide you through this trying process.
Can I Be Reimbursed For My Medical Bills?
Yes. If you were seriously injured in an accident and have spent money on medical treatments for that injury, you can recover compensation for that expense.
What Happens If The Doctor Thinks I’ll Need Care For The Rest Of My Life?
If your injury is permanently disabling and prevents you from returning to work or participating in activities that you frequently enjoyed prior to the accident and causes you mental and physical anguish, your personal injury attorney will be able to pursue additional compensation by making it clear that your quality of life has been affected.
Can I Be Reimbursed For The Time I Had To Take Off Of Work?
Yes. Many car accident lawsuit settlements and verdicts provide the plaintiff with full compensation for the time that they were away from work. This may also include compensation for any lost opportunities – such as a bonus, pay raise, or promotion.
Wrongful Death Cases
In the tragic event that the accident resulted in the death of a loved one, it may be possible for you or other family members to pursue a wrongful death claim.
In New York, the only person that may file a wrongful death claim is the “personal representative” of the estate. This representative, however, may file on behalf of the deceased’s heirs, beneficiaries, or devisees.
Every case is different, but it may be possible to obtain damages for:
- funeral and burial expenses
- the medical expenses that relate to the final injuries suffered by the deceased
- the value of the support that the deceased offered to the family
- the value of parental care that the deceased would have offered surviving children
- any conscious pain and suffering that was experienced by the deceased prior to their passing from their final injuries
- earnings and benefits that have been lost due to the deceased’s passing
Should I Talk To The Insurance Companies?
If you have been in an accident, you should report the accident to your insurance company. However, if asked to make a recorded statement with an adjuster, you should inform them that you would like to wait until you have consulted with your attorney.
Any statements made to an adjuster can be used to deny or lessen the amounts you would have received as part of your insurance claim. An attorney can guide you through the questioning and let you know which questions you do or do not have to answer.
They’ve Asked Me To Release My Medical Records – Should I?
Absolutely not. When you release your medical records, this means that the insurance company has access to ALL of your medical records, not just the ones pertaining to the accident. Before you sign any sort of consent giving an insurance company access to your medical records, consult with your attorney.
How Long Do I Have To Decide If I Want To Pursue Legal Action?
Victims must file their complaint within the statute of limitations. Each state is different – New York’s is three years from the date of the accident. If the complaint isn’t filed during this period of time the victim may no longer be able to obtain compensation for their losses.
If I Sue, Will My Case Have To Go To Trial?
Not every case goes to trial – in fact, a majority of personal injury lawsuits are settled out of court. If your case does go to trial, you can rest easy knowing that our team of attorneys will fight passionately for your rights.