Car Accidents Lawyer in Saratoga Springs, NY
Except with regard to very minor automobile accidents in which the parties may rely upon their own “no-fault” insurance coverage, a victim seeking to recover damages from the party whom they believe caused a crash must prove that the allegedly responsible person or entity failed to use reasonable care under the circumstances and that the plaintiff suffered a “serious injury” as defined by NYS Law. A serious injury is defined by NY Insurance Law § 5102(d) as an injury resulting in: (1) death, (2) dismemberment, (3) significant disfigurement, (4) fracture, (5) loss of a fetus, (6) permanent and total loss of use of a body organ, member, function, or system, (7) permanent consequential limitation of use of a body organ or member, (8) significant limitation of use of a body function or system, and (9) a medically determined injury or impairment of a non-permanent nature which prevents the injured person from performing substantially all of the material acts which constitute such person’s usual and customary daily activities for not less than 90 days during the 180 days immediately following the occurrence of the injury or impairment.
The plaintiff must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that they suffered a serious injury, which may include death, dismemberment, significant disfigurement, fracture, loss of a fetus, medical bills, lost time from work, lost income, pain and suffering, property damage, the costs of future treatment, and loss of consortium.
Saratoga County Attorney Assisting Motor Vehicle Collision Victims
Tens of thousands of New York residents are involved in automobile accidents each year as motorists, passengers, bicyclists, or pedestrians. People who have been hurt in serious car crashes often must deal with staggering medical bills, lost income, physical pain, and emotional trauma. If you or your family has been affected by a motor vehicle collision, experienced Saratoga County car accident lawyer Gregory P. Garofalo can help you take the steps necessary to get your family and you back on your feet. He has helped injured people in the Hudson Valley and the surrounding areas for over two decades and provides compassionate service during difficult times in the lives of his clients. He is familiar with local judges and courts, and he often has obtained favorable results in cases that other personal injury attorneys have turned down.
Pursuing Maximum Compensation After a Serious Car Accident
You may be aware that New York is a “no-fault” state. While this is technically true, it does not mean that people who suffer devastating injuries in a car accident are without a legal remedy beyond their own automobile insurance coverage. If they can prove that they have suffered a “serious injury” as defined under state law, they may step outside the no-fault system and seek damages from the motorist whose carelessness led to the accident. If the responsible motorist does not have adequate liability insurance, an injured person also may make an uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance claim under their own policy.
A car accident lawsuit arising from a serious injury tends to be based on the concept of negligence. The term “negligence” simply means that the defendant failed to act in the manner that a reasonably prudent person would have acted under the same or similar circumstances. Four separate elements are involved in a negligence case. These elements are duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. In other words, the defendant’s careless conduct must have directly resulted in the crash, and the victim must have sustained damages that are reasonably quantifiable. The burden of proof is on the plaintiff to prove each element by a preponderance of the evidence, or show that it is more likely than not to be present.
Under New York’s pure comparative fault rule, a defendant may ask the jury to assign some of the fault to the plaintiff. Although a finding of comparative negligence does not bar a plaintiff’s right to compensation, it may reduce their damages in proportion to the level of fault assigned to them by a jury. A prompt investigation into the cause of a crash may help combat or minimize the impact of a comparative fault argument, thereby increasing the plaintiff’s chances for a full and fair recovery of damages. These may be economic, such as medical expenses, lost earnings, and property damage, as well as non-economic, such as compensation for pain and suffering and loss of consortium, which is a companion claim typically filed by an injured person’s spouse.
Seek Guidance from a Knowledgeable Car Accident Lawyer in Saratoga County
If you are dealing with the aftermath of a crash, Saratoga County car accident attorney Gregory P. Garofalo can give you the comprehensive, honest, and trustworthy advice that you need. He is committed to asserting the rights of each client in a manner suited to their personal goals, and many of his cases have come through referrals from friends and family members. To schedule a free consultation with Attorney Garofalo, call us at (518) 584-1557 or contact us online. He can help people who need a drunk driving accident attorney or assistance with another type of car accident claim in Ballston Lake, Ballston Spa, Clifton Park, Malta, Rotterdam, Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort, Waterford, Albany, Latham, Schenectady, Glens Falls, and Queensbury, as well as other areas of Saratoga, Albany, Warren, Washington, and Schenectady County.