A Rear-end accident is among the most common type of car accident, particularly in busy cities like Brooklyn, where there is often a great deal of congestion, stop-and-go traffic, and tailgating. Often, rear-end accidents occur at relatively low speeds and do not cause significant property damage or injuries. However, if a vehicle is rear-ended by a car or truck that is traveling at a high speed, it can cause severe injuries and fatalities.
In many cases, it is presumed that the driver who rear-ended the other vehicle is responsible for causing the accident. If another motorist rear-ended you, you may be able to sue the at-fault driver, although this will depend on the circumstances of the accident.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Rear-End Accidents?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly one-third of all car accidents result from rear-end collisions. The following are examples of the most common causes of rear-end accidents, most of which are preventable if motorists avoid distractions and obey the rules of the road:
- Distracted driving
- Driver inattentiveness
- Failure to maintain a safe following distance
- Inclement weather conditions
- Dangerous road conditions
- Mechanical issues
What Should You Do if You Are Rear-Ended?
Rear-end car accidents happen when you least expect it. They can be very stressful, particularly if the accident occurs on a busy city street. The best thing you can do if you are rear-ended is to try not to panic and keep the following tips in mind:
- Check for injuries.
- Call 911 and report the accident. Notify dispatch of any injuries so they can send an ambulance to the accident scene.
- Take pictures of your injuries, the damage to your vehicle, the position of both vehicles, the location of the accident, and any skid marks on the road.
- If there were witnesses who saw the accident, ask if they would be willing to provide a statement.
- Get a copy of the accident report.
- Notify your insurance company.
- Contact an experienced car accident lawyer.
How Do You Recover Compensation for Your Injuries?
Since New York is a no-fault insurance state, your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance will cover the expenses associated with the accident up to a specific limit. All licensed motorists in New York are required to carry PIP insurance.
If your medical costs exceed the amount your PIP insurance covers, you can file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver for the remaining damages in certain cases. To pursue a claim against the other driver, you must meet the serious injury threshold, which is an injury that results in the following:
- Substantial disfigurement
- Permanent loss of a body part, organ, function, or system
- Significant limitation of a bodily system or function
- Permanent, substantial restriction of a body organ or member
- Medically determined injury that prevents the victim from experiencing typical daily activities for at least 90 days with 180 days after the accident
- Loss of a fetus
How Do You Pursue a Personal Injury Lawsuit After a Rear-End Accident?
If your medical expenses exceed the amount that is covered by your PIP insurance and you qualify to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault motorist, you must take the following steps:
- Prove that the other driver was negligent.
- Collect evidence. Take pictures of your injuries and the damage to your vehicle, and obtain copies of surveillance videos that may have captured the accident.
- Collaborate with witnesses.
- Present your damages to the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
- If the insurance company refuses to agree on a settlement, your lawyer can advise you on filing in court.
Our Brooklyn Car Accident Lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki Represent Victims of Rear-End Collisions
If you or someone you love was injured in a rear-end car accident, speak with our Brooklyn car accident lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki. We will protect your legal rights and address your questions and concerns. To schedule a free consultation, call 718-522-1020 or contact us online. Located in Brooklyn, we serve clients throughout New York City, including The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island.