Even if you were partially at fault for the injuries you endured in a car accident, you should not deny yourself a personal injury claim that may help you recover the compensation you require. Read on to learn about New York’s car insurance policies and comparative negligence laws and how an experienced car accident lawyer in Queens can help with your healing process.

How does car insurance work in the state of New York?

The state of New York follows a no-fault car insurance system. This means that you are required to have Personal Injury Protection, which covers you and your passengers. In other words, it will cover some damages, such as medical bills and lost wages, regardless if you were partially at fault for the car accident.

But this insurance may not compensate you for everything, which is why you may have to contact one of the skilled Queens personal injury attorneys to file a personal injury claim to recover the remaining balance. Ensure that you do so within New York’s statute of limitations of three years from the date of your accident.

What are the comparative negligence laws in New York?

Like many states, New York follows a pure comparative negligence system, which holds each party liable for the role they played in the accident. Under these rules, you will always recover compensation from the other party’s insurance company, unless you are 100% at fault.

However, the amount of compensation you will receive will be altered to reflect your role in the accident. For example, if the jury awards $100,000 in damages, but finds you were 10% responsible for the accident, you’re entitled to 90%, i.e. $90,000. Contrastingly, if you were found to be primarily responsible, at 90%, you are still entitled to 10% of the damages, i.e. $10,000.

How is fault determined and proven in a car accident?

The following are examples of how fault is determined in a car accident:

  • Hitting a car from behind.
  • Violating a traffic law, such as running a red light, turning at a no-turn on red, or going over the speed limit.
  • Making comments admitting or implying personal blame after the accident.
  • Displaying a level of impairment due to drugs or alcohol.
  • Failing to keep a proper lookout due to distracted driving.

It is important that you document your role in the accident clearly so that you can avoid maximizing any fault assigned to you. To build a successful case to prove the other party’s negligence, it is helpful to collect photos or videos of the accident, statements from eyewitnesses, and police reports.

Contact our Firm

The Law Offices of George Poulos is an experienced Workers’ Compensation, personal injury, bankruptcy, and Social Security Disability law firm with offices in Queens and the Bronx. We understand the implications of a serious accident, which is why we take pride in tenaciously representing our clients. If you require strong legal representation, contact our firm today to schedule a free consultation.