New York City Car Accident Attorneys
Auto Accidents in Brooklyn & the Nearby Areas
If you or someone you love was involved in a car accident caused by another person’s careless, reckless, or wrongful conduct, you deserve justice. Rubenstein & Rynecki can help you fight for the fair compensation you are owed so that you can get back on your feet.
Based in Brooklyn, our New York City car accident lawyers have been serving injured victims and their families since 1972. Our firm has been recognized since its founding in 1996 as one that goes above and beyond for our clients. We proudly offer our clients the compassionate, attentive care they deserve and the personalized, aggressive advocacy they need. We can help you navigate New York’s complex car accident laws and help you file a claim for compensation. If necessary, we are even ready to represent you in court.
How Our Car Accident Attorneys Can Help
At Rubenstein & Rynecki, we have decades of experience helping victims of all types of auto accidents, including those involving:
- Excessive speeds
- Distracted driving and cell phone use
- Drunk drivers
- Drowsy drivers
- Rear-end collisions
- Stop light and stop sign collisions
- Multi-vehicle pileups
- Intersection collisions
- Rideshare (Uber, Lyft, etc.) vehicles
- ATVs and RVs
- Large trucks
- Commercial vehicles
- Roadway defects
We have successfully represented victims of minor and major accidents, including collisions leading to serious, catastrophic injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and whiplash.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in NYC?
Most NYC car accidents are caused by driver negligence. The most common causes include:
- Driver inattention or distraction: Driver inattention and distraction, including texting while driving, is consistently one of – if not the – leading causes of car accidents in New York City.
- Tailgating: Another common cause of auto accidents in NYC is following too closely, or “tailgating.” Following too closely can lead to chain-reaction accidents, in which several cars collide sequentially.
- Failure to yield: A driver’s failure to yield to a vehicle with the right of way at one of New York City’s countless intersections can result in a collision that leads to severe injuries.
- Improper passing or lane usage: Many serious collisions are caused by drivers failing to use proper signals, check their blind spots, and unsafe lane changes.
- Speeding and reckless driving: Speeding accounts for numerous serious or fatal accidents every month in New York City. Many collisions also involve aggressive driving, road rage, or alcohol consumption.
Other common causes of car accidents in New York City include hazardous road conditions, inclement weather, faulty road design, improper maintenance, and auto defects.
What Should I Do After an Accident in NYC?
Should you be involved in a car accident in NYC, you can take steps to protect yourself, your passengers, and your legal rights, including:
- Remain at the scene. Leaving the scene of an accident without identifying yourself and providing reasonable aid to others is a crime in New York.
- Move your vehicle out of traffic, if possible. Place flares or fluorescent triangles to divert traffic. Otherwise, do not disturb the accident scene.
- Call 911 if anyone is injured and wait for paramedics to arrive. Do not attempt to move anyone (including yourself) who appears seriously injured.
- Have the police come to the scene. Give the responding officer an accurate account of events. Learn how you can obtain an accident report.
- Exchange information with the other driver(s) involved in the accidents. You should try to get their name(s), driver’s license number, contact information, and insurance information.
- Document the scene of the accident and preserve any evidence. Take photos of the accident scene and your property/vehicle damage and injuries.
- Talk to witnesses. If anyone witnessed the crash, try to get their name(s) and contact information. This may be critical for the success of your future claim or lawsuit.
- Get medical treatment immediately. Even if you believe your injuries are minor, you should still see a doctor. If anyone was injured or killed, or there was property damage to one person over $1,000, you must report the accident within 10 days. You can download the appropriate form here.
- Call your insurance company and notify them about the accident. However, you should avoid talking to the other person’s insurance provider and not accept a settlement offer.
- Call a New York City personal injury attorney at our firm. We can assist you in filing your claim, dealing with the insurance company, and protecting your rights.
How Is Liability Determined in New York Car Accident Cases?
New York law assigns liability based on each party’s percentage of negligence in an accident. If the court assigns you a percentage of fault for the crash, your compensation will be reduced in proportion to your at-fault percentage. Under the state’s pure comparative negligence rule, you do not need to prove that you were less to blame than the other driver to bring a claim.
It is important to note that when you allow another person to drive your car in New York, you are liable for any damages resulting from an accident they cause.
How Does No-Fault Insurance Work in New York?
Under the no-fault system, you do not need to prove that the other driver was to blame for the accident to seek compensation; instead, you can file a claim with your insurance provider and be covered for certain losses following the crash.
Your no-fault insurance covers medical costs, 80 percent of your lost wages, and other “reasonable and necessary expenses” related to your injuries. No-fault insurance pays up to $50,000 per victim to cover basic economic losses – but it does not cover pain and suffering damages.
To recover for your pain and suffering, you must prove that another party was negligent and that you sustained a “serious” injury.
As defined by New York Insurance Law, a serious injury falls into one of these categories:
- Significant disfigurement
- Loss of a fetus
- Permanent loss of use of a body organ, member, function, or system
- Permanent consequential limitation of a body organ or member
- Significant limitation of use of a body function or system
- Medically determined non-permanent injury or impairment that prevented the performance of all usual and customary daily activities for 90 out of 180 days following the accident
Do I Need a Car Accident Lawyer?
Having a car accident lawyer on your side provides many benefits, including but not limited to:
- A car accident lawyer prevents you from making mistakes in what you say and what you settle for with your insurer.
- With a lawyer, you get the help of experts who can predict the future costs of your injuries (medical and therapeutic care, the effects on your ability to earn a living, and the future costs of housing, food, and other expenses).
- Having a lawyer sends a message to your insurer that you are serious about your case.
New York’s Car Accident Statute of Limitations
Your time to take legal action after a car accident in New York is limited. In most cases, you typically have three years from the crash date to file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible driver or drivers. If a person dies in the crash, the victim’s family generally has two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit in court.
If you attempt to file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations expires, your case will likely be dismissed, and you will be unable to recover compensation for your injuries.
New York Car Accident FAQs
Will I have to go to court?
Possibly, but it is highly unlikely. Most car accident cases are resolved in the form of an out-of-court settlement. Our attorneys will advise you of your legal options.
I am partially at fault. Do I still have a case?
Possibly, yes. New York operates under a “pure comparative fault” law. However, your eligible compensation will be reduced proportionally.
How long will my car accident case take?
Every case is unique and will follow its own timeline. Therefore, it is impossible to predict how long it will take to resolve. In most cases, a car accident case can take one to three years to resolve. More complex cases can take several years to litigate.
How much is my car accident case worth?
Each case will have a different value based on its unique circumstances. Generally, your case’s value will depend on factors, like the severity and long-term impact of your injuries, how long you’re unable to work after being hurt, the amount of insurance coverage available, and the negotiation skills of your attorney.
How much does it cost to hire a NYC car accident lawyer?
Rubenstein & Rynecki handles car accident cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will not pay anything upfront for our services. Instead of a retainer or hourly rate, our attorneys will receive a portion of any settlement or jury award we secure on your behalf.
Contact Our New York City Car Accident Attorneys at Rubenstein & Rynecki for a Free Consultation
With decades of experience and hundreds of millions of dollars recovered in compensation for our clients, our New York City car accident attorneys at Rubenstein & Rynecki have the skills, resources, and know-how to help you. Call 718-522-1020 or contact us online to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today. Located in Brooklyn, we serve clients throughout New York City, including The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island.