Bronx, NY’s Car Accident Lawyer
For the legal help needed after car accidents, residents of Bronx, NY have trusted The Law Office of Evan W. Kohn to get their just compensation.
Car Accident Page
Experienced Car Accident Attorney in The Bronx
Evan W. Kohn is an experienced and dedicated personal injury lawyer offering professional services with offices in the Bronx, Astoria, and Kew Gardens. Our staff speaks English, Spanish, Greek, Albanian, and Bengali to serve the diverse population of our great city. We only accept payments when your case is won, and your initial consultation is free.
With over 30 years practicing personal injury law and representing individuals injured from car accidents, Mr. Kohn has helped clients in a variety of situations. If, as a result of your injury, you cannot drive or use public transportation to meet Mr. Kohn, he will meet you in your home or the hospital for your appointment. When visiting our offices, parking is free and conveniently located.
Types of Car Accident Cases We Handle
Car Accidents can be divided up into different types, it is important to consult with a Bronx car accident lawyer who will be able to protect your rights and work hard to litigate any claims to get you the best outcome possible.
- Single Car Crashes: When only one vehicle is involved in an auto accident, it is classified as a single car crash. These incidents may involve a driver striking a tree or telephone pole.
- Fender Benders: Typically not serious, fender benders are auto accidents that can result in property damage rather than injury. It is possible, however, for a driver or passenger to experience whiplash from the wreck.
- Head-on Collisions: When the front end of one vehicle strikes the front end of another vehicle, a head-on collision occurs. Fatalities or serious injuries are common among head-on collisions, especially when they happen on a highway that has higher than average speed limits.
- T-Bone Crashes: T-bone car accidents are also known as side-impact collisions and happen when any part of one car strikes the side of another. Damage to the vehicle during this type of auto accident is guaranteed; however, injuries depend on where the car was hit and where the occupants of the vehicle were sitting.
What Causes Most Car Accidents in The Bronx?
Any number of factors can play a role in causing a motor vehicle crash. In general, if you sustain injuries or other damages that result from negligence, carelessness, or recklessness of some sort, you may have the basis for an auto accident claim.
All motorists on the road share a responsibility to drive safely and attentively, and failure to do so could be considered negligent. Likewise, car manufacturers and those maintaining roadways have a responsibility to provide safe vehicles and safe driving conditions. Consider the following negligent behaviors and related circumstances that could cause an accident:
- Speeding or ignoring other traffic laws/signs
- Becoming distracted by passengers or scenery
- Falling asleep at the wheel
- Talking or texting on a mobile phone
- Eating or drinking behind the wheel
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- A vehicle that malfunctions due to a flaw in design or production
- A dangerous roadway with no effort given to eliminate hazards and/or alert drivers
Common Car Accident Injuries in The Bronx
The types of injuries that can happen in a car accident are as various as the cars on the road. However, some of the most common injuries from car accidents that we seek recovery for include:
- Whiplash. When a vehicle comes to a sudden stop or sharp turn the head can “whip” back and forth, injuring tendons and muscles in the neck. Most whiplash heals with time, but some cases can be more severe.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI). A concussion is a TBI that heals in a short period of time, but often bruising, tearing and other injuries to the brain can cause debilitating problems.
- Broken bones. The sheer impact and blunt force of car accidents often causes broken bones in the extremities, such as the arms, legs, feet and hands. As people age, broken bones take longer to heal and can cause lasting disabilities.
- Internal bleeding. The impact from an accident can tear or rupture internal organs, causing internal bleeding that requires surgery, and in worst-case scenarios, is fatal.
- PTSD. Being involved in an accident can be a scary, stressful and sometimes horrifying experience. As a result, people often suffer from psychological and emotional injuries long after the physical injuries have healed. This can include symptoms like depression, anxiety, stress, and a reduced interest in life.
Steps You Should Take After a Bronx Car Accident
There are few sounds more frightening than the squeal of tires and the crunch of metal against metal. When you are involved in an accident with another vehicle, your first instinct is to make sure that you and anybody else who may be in your car did not suffer any injuries. Then what?
There are a number of steps you should take to ensure that you are protected now and in the future: medically, legally, and financially.
1. Stay at the Scene
If you are able to do so safely, pull off the road and put on your hazard lights—but never, ever leave the scene. In particular, if there are any injuries, leaving can get you arrested for hit-and-run with penalties that cost thousands of dollars and a substantial prison sentence.
2. Check on all Passengers and Drivers Involved in the Accident
Even an injury that seems insignificant now can turn into something more serious. Knee and shoulder injuries and whiplash may that feel like a minor ache can turn to chronic pain. Moreover, traumatic brain injuries are not always evident right away. If you or anybody else may have sustained any injury, no matter how slight it may feel at the time, call 911 for medical assistance.
3. Call the Police
If you’ve already called 911, the police will show up. If there are no injuries, it still pays to call law enforcement. Getting a police report will be critical when filing an insurance claim. If there is extensive vehicle damage (and yes, damage to guardrails, trees, telephone poles, buildings or other structures are likely covered under car insurance) a police report will be required. Police will note pertinent information and most importantly, get statements from all drivers and any possible witnesses. When questioned by the police, be courteous…and never admit guilt, even if you think you may have caused the accident.
4. Exchange Information
Although the police report will contain much of the information needed, you should exchange information with all drivers who were involved in the accident. In addition to names, make sure you see their insurance card and include the policy number, the name of the insurance company and the date of expiration. If they do not have an insurance card, make sure you get their contact information including name, phone number and all information listed on their drivers’ license, including the number and date of expiration. Also get the make and model of the car and the license plate number.
5. Take Pictures
A picture is worth a thousand words, and this is seldom truer than when documenting damage done in an auto accident. If you can do so safely (meaning you are not in the way of active traffic, for instance), take pictures of damage to vehicles and property.
6. Consider Hiring a Bronx Car Accident Attorney
Do you know all your rights following a car accident? Many of us don’t, and that’s why seeking legal advice may be in your best interest. If the insurance company denies or lowballs your claim, your Bronx car accident lawyer will work to make sure you get what is fair. If you were injured, your attorney will file a claim on your behalf to make sure you get the medical care you need and other compensation you deserve. And if you are sued, your lawyer can mount a legal defense.
Get Legal Guidance From a Skilled Bronx Car Accident Attorney
Anytime there are injuries or significant vehicle or property damage, it is imperative that you get legal help. If you’re not sure of all your rights, consulting a knowledgeable car accident lawyer in the Bronx from Law Office of Evan W. Kohn can help you get the fair compensation and peace of mind you deserve. Contact us today at 718-409-5500.
What Not to do After a Bronx Car Accident
Getting into an auto accident while driving in the Bronx can be a shocking, overwhelming experience. Whether it is a small fender bender or a serious injury accident, it is important to know what steps to take and what to avoid after a crash.
Do Not Block Traffic
After a car crash occurs, it is important to protect the accident scene. Move the vehicles out of the way if possible and turn on emergency hazard lights. If vehicles, debris, or injury victims block traffic or pose a risk for additional car accidents, dial 911 and move to a safe location.
Never Just Drive Away
When you are involved in an accident in the Bronx, it is important to stay at the scene. Driving away makes the accident a hit-and-run, also called leaving the scene without reporting. This is a violation of New York vehicle and traffic law and may result in a fine and even imprisonment. Drivers are required to exchange information, including names, addresses, and insurance information. You should also contact your insurance company. If the accident damage exceeds $1,000, you must file a report within 10 days.
Do Not Forget to Record the Scene
Recording accident information promptly is the best way to ensure it is accurately reported to insurance companies. This information may also help protect drivers, passengers, and other injured parties during possible future lawsuits. As long as you are able, take steps to record the scene, including:
- Take photographs of the accident and your injuries
- Draw diagrams
- Write down what happened
- Interview potential witnesses
- Give accurate details to police
- Seek medical attention
Make sure that all information is accurate and not merely speculation. Never say, “It was my fault.” Fault is a legal term and can easily be misused with unfortunate consequences. New Yorkfollows a no-fault insurance system. However, accident victims with serious injuries under New York law may pursue a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit to recover damages.
Do Not Avoid Medical Care
Do not put on a brave face and attempt to minimize the seriousness of injuries or assume that you will not feel the effects of the crash later on. Often, shock and adrenaline mask initial injuries and pain may surface after the accident. Victims with concussion or other brain injuries may not show symptoms until days or even weeks after the accident. Seek prompt medical care to ensure that all accident injuries are covered by insurance or through a lawsuit later on.
Avoid Social Media
Nowadays, everything we do ends up on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. Posting accident details on social media is never a good idea. In fact, it is better to stay off social media entirely. Even an innocent post of you lifting a child or repairing a tire may be used by an insurance company or during accident litigation as evidence that your injuries are not as serious as claimed.
Determining Who is at Fault for Your Car Accident in the Bronx
In the Bronx, car accidents happen quickly and unexpectedly. Drivers, passengers, and pedestrians may disagree about what exactly happened and who was at fault. But fault may not matter for insurance purposes because insurers are supposed to cover injuries regardless. However, damages often exceed what insurers pay out and in serious injury cases proving who was at fault is the key to recovery.
New York is a No-Fault Insurance state
Under New York State law, every driver must have a minimum amount of auto insurance, including no-fault coverage of $50,000. No-Fault insurance coverage pays individuals up to the policy limit for injuries caused by auto accidents.
What Is “No-Fault” Insurance in New York?
New York no-fault insurance helps people injured in motor vehicle accidents
New York no-fault insurance is also known as personal injury protection. It is designed so that insurance will pay for those who are injured, no matter who is at fault for the accident. Damages refers to the cost of injuries, including medical bills, lost wages, and other medical expenses related to the accident. No-fault insurance covers a minimum of $50,000 for each injured person.
Who is covered by New York no-fault insurance?
The New York no-fault insurance laws were enacted in the 1970s to provide reimbursement for the cost of damages in car accidents no matter who is responsible for the accident. To be eligible for New York’s no-fault insurance benefits, you must meet the following criteria:
- Your insurance policy has to be issued by an insurance company that is licensed to conduct business in New York
- The vehicle involved in the accident must be a car, bus, taxi, or truck
- You must be a driver or passenger of the insured vehicles, or a pedestrian or bicyclist that was hit by an insured vehicle
- The accident must take place within New York State
- The insured vehicle must be registered in New York State
- You must be a resident of New York when the accident occurred
- You have no other automobile insurance available to you
Who is NOT covered by New York no-fault insurance?
Typically, no-fault insurance does not apply to:
- Owners of uninsured vehicles, their spouses, and passengers in the uninsured vehicle
- People who drive motorcycles, scooters, Vespas and similar vehicles and their passengers
- People involved in an accident with their car who do not have insurance coverage
- Drivers who have insurance policies that are not purchased in New York
- Drivers who have insurance policies issued by a company that is not licensed to conduct business in New York
- Drivers operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs are not covered.
How do I file a no-fault claim in New York?
To file a no-fault insurance claim, you must meet the specific criteria above. You must also be covered under New York’s no-fault law and file a police report within 24 hours of the accident. Depending on the type of accident, you have either 90 or 180 days after the accident to submit a Notice of Intention to the Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation (MVAIC).
Created in 1958 by the New York State Legislature, MVAIC now operates as a non-profit organization providing no-fault and bodily injury coverage to eligible people. You can check your eligibility here.
No fault insurance includes drivers, passengers, bicyclists, and pedestrians. It does not matter who is at fault or whether there was negligence. This law limits when an injured party can sue for personal injury resulting from a car crash, even when economic losses exceed insurance benefits or there are non-economic damages such as pain or suffering.
Serious injuries under New York law
In order to sue an at-fault driver after a car crash, injured parties must be able to show that injuries were serious or that the accident resulted in death. New York’s no-fault law lists serious injuries that qualify for potential personal injury litigation, such as:
- Significant disfigurement
- Loss of a fetus
- Permanent loss or limited use of use of a body organ, member, function, or system
In addition, the law provides a catch-all for other serious injuries, including those that limit daily activities for at least 90 days during the 180 days after the injury and accident.
Fault in personal injury or wrongful death
Once it is established that injuries meet the seriousness threshold, the next step in personal injury litigation is to prove who was at fault in causing the accident. In the Bronx, and throughout New York State, a personal injury plaintiff can sue to recover damages to property, for injury, or for wrongful death, even if he or she was partly at-fault.
This is called contributory negligence. Under this law of negligence, the plaintiff’s monetary recovery is reduced by the proportion that he or she was at-fault in causing the accident. Proportion of negligence may be fairly subjective and proving fault percentages takes knowledge and experience.
Filing a claim after your accident in The Bronx
The statute of limitations on car accidents in the Bronx and throughout NY is three years—that means that you have three years in which to file a lawsuit should you choose to do so. But the sooner you file, the
sooner you might obtain some relief from the undue financial stress your accident caused.
The process may seem relatively straightforward, but it often involves in-depth investigations and analyses, acquisition of documents, expert testimony, negotiation, and other stages that your lawyer will know best how to execute to your advantage.
The damages you can receive in a claim may be quite extensive, depending on the details of your unique case. Consider the following payment you may be entitled to after an auto accident:
- Reimbursement of current medical bills and estimation of future medical costs
- Lost wages from missed work due to injury
- Coverage for vehicle and other property damage
- Consideration for emotional anguish, pain and suffering
- Punitive damages in cases of DUI, reckless driving, or other gross negligence
- Death-related expenses if you lose a loved one
As a “No-Fault” state, a driver who is injured in a car accident will turn to his or her automobile insurance company to pay some or all medical expenses, no matter who is at fault for the accident.
In some states, there is a limit to what the insurance company will pay. To get compensation from an at-fault driver, you must qualify for a serious injury and file a lawsuit.
Disputes with Insurance Companies
Insurance companies habitually deny valid claims by manipulating and interpreting the language of your policies. It is important to have a lawyer who is familiar with the laws and policies of your insurance companies, as well as experience working with them for your best interest.
Expert Bronx Car Accident Lawyer
The Bronx is an area with consistent traffic issues that often lead to unfortunate accidents. These auto accidents can have lingering legal effects including medical bills, expensive car overhauls, and disputes with insurance companies. Let us fight for you to get the money you deserve from insurance companies and at-fault drivers.
Your best choice for legal help with auto accidents is Evan W. Kohn. Now serving The Bronx and Upstate areas including Ulster County & Delaware County. Our offices provide personal injury legal experience, affordable rates, and a history of quality representation. Se habla español. Call our office today to schedule your free consultation. Zoom and Skype consultations are also available during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Our Bronx Office
2000 White Plains Rd,