What to Do If You Experienced a Motor Vehicle Injury
Motor vehicle injury amounts to 2.3 million hospital visits in the United States yearly. In fact, around 200,000 serious injuries occur each year. While not everyone gets themselves into this predicament, it is important that you understand your rights so that you know what to do in case you find yourself in such situation.
New York State law requires that all drivers involved in a crash to stop and stay at the scene in order to exchange information or provide assistance to the inured. Do not attempt to leave otherwise you will be charged with a hit-and-run and face more severe penalties including being sent to jail or lose your driver’s license.
The first thing that you need to do is to call the New York City Police Department. And while you are waiting for them to arrive at the scene, gather information such as the name of the other car owner, passengers inside the car, or any witnesses to the accident. It is also good to note the weather and traffic conditions to provide as evidence to the responding police officers.
Report The Accident To DMV
After the accident, you need to file a report with the DMV especially if property damages exceed $1,000 or if any person gets injured or killed. Make sure that you file a report within 10 days otherwise your license will be suspended.
State Insurance Requirements
New York is one of the states that has a no-fault insurance program. It is recommended that you get a New York State liability insurance from an in-state provider. The insurance will be able to provide compensation for injury, death, and property damage. Currently, the insurance program pays $25,000 to $50,000 for injury caused by motor vehicle accidents, $50,000 to $100,000 for death, and $10,000 for property damage.
The insurance also covers injuries that you have sustained as a result of the accident as long as you were not under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the accident happened. More importantly, you should not be engaged in criminal behavior when the event happened. On the other hand, when it comes to property damage, it does not mean it covers the damages sustained on your vehicle—it is only meant to cover the other driver’s personal property.
After the investigation, your insurance company will likely attempt to reach for a settlement agreement depending on the type of damages you are claiming. It is good to know that you are not required to accept any settlements from an insurance carrier if you don’t like the agreement. If you cannot reach an agreement, you can take your appeal to an adjuster’s supervisor or file a lawsuit.
Why Hire An Attorney
Being involved in a motor vehicle injury can be a very nerve-wracking experience. Not only do you have to deal with physical damages but the complex legal issues that surround it are enough to make you feel downright confused and frustrated. So, if you are not sure on what to do, seek help from a Staten Island personal injury lawyer who is knowledgeable in motor vehicle injury is your best option. An experienced attorney can help you understand your rights during this very difficult time. Many Staten Island personal injury lawyers take auto accident cases on a contingency fee basis, so you don’t have to pay the lawyer for his or her fees if, in case, you lose the case.