If you’ve never suffered a serious injury, you may have given little thought to personal injury law. However, injuries happen unexpectedly, and what you do in the immediate aftermath can have a significant impact on your future. Before filing a personal injury lawsuit in New York, here’s what you should know about New York personal injury law:
1. Personal injury lawyers handle a wide range of cases.
While “personal injury” may bring car accidents to mind, personal injury lawyers help people who have been injured through the negligence of another person or entity. That may mean being hurt on someone’s poorly maintained property, being injured by medical malpractice, suffering an accident at work or a wide range of other types of injury.
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2. The earlier you talk to a personal injury lawyer, the better.
The statute of limitations for most New York personal injury cases is three years, but that doesn’t mean you should delay contacting an attorney. The period immediately following an injury is a maze of opportunities to harm your case, and the sooner you get professional guidance, the better.
3. The insurance company is not your friend.
Shortly after an accident, you will likely be contacted by one or more insurance companies. The insurance company representatives will undoubtedly be friendly and seem helpful, even talking about the need to get you compensation as quickly as possible. You can’t afford to forget that the insurance company representative’s job is to save the insurance company money, and that happens when your compensation is limited.
4. You may be entitled to compensation for future losses and expenses.
In a personal injury case, the injured party may be awarded damages for a wide range of losses, including medical expenses, lost income, property damage and pain and suffering. However, compensation isn’t limited to what has already occurred at the time the case is litigated or settled. If medical expenses, limited earning capacity and other losses or expenses are expected to continue, you may be entitled to compensation for those projected damages.
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5. Every personal injury case is different.
Some personal injury cases involve limited, easily-measurable injuries and can be resolved relatively quickly. Others require extensive investigation and expert calculations. Many personal injury cases are resolved by agreement, but some proceed to trial before a judge or jury, requiring substantial preparation and a significant time investment. Your personal injury lawyer can provide a knowledgeable assessment of your case, but don’t expect a precise timeline or prediction regarding the compensation you’ll receive.
6. There is typically no cost to get started.
Often, people who have been injured are facing financial difficulties, including medical bills and limited ability to work. Our attorneys understand that many injury victims need access to legal representation in order to secure the resources to rebuild their lives. That’s why we handle personal injury cases on a contingency basis, meaning that the client pays no legal fees unless and until we settle the case or win at trial.
7. The right representation matters in a personal injury case.
Working with an experienced personal injury attorney who cares about your future and isn’t afraid to take your case to trial if that’s in your best interest can make a significant difference in how your case proceeds, and in the recovery you can expect. Do your homework and choose your attorney carefully.
If you or a family member has been injured because someone else was careless or didn’t live up to his responsibilities, you owe it to yourself to consult an experienced personal injury attorney. Just call 212-732-2929 or fill out the contact form on this page to schedule a free consultation.