Personal Injury Law

New York City

Thousands of people are injured each year throughout New York because of the negligence, recklessness, or other wrongdoing of another party. An unexpected accident or injury can result in traumatic injuries, substantial financial damages, and intense physical and emotional pain and suffering. New York’s personal injury laws provide a way for accident victims seek compensation for their injuries, losses, and damages. 

The Law Office of Natascia Ayers mission is to obtain justice for individuals and families who have been injured in an accident or due to medical malpractice.   We represent clients in New York, including throughout New York City and The Hamptons. For a free consultation with a NYC personal injury lawyer, contact our office to speak with me, or a knowledgeable member of our staff.  Our representation is on a contingency fee basis, meaning that we pay for all the expenses in the litigation and you pay nothing up front, only paying if and when there is a settlement or judgment awarding you money.

We speak Spanish, Italian, and French.

What Do You Need to Know About Personal Injury Claims in New York City?

In this personal injury guide, Attorney Natascia Ayers discusses several topics that you need to know about personal injury cases in New York. Highlights from the article include:

  • What is a personal injury claim?

  • How do you know if you have a personal injury claim?

  • Common types of personal injury cases 

  • Common accident injuries 

  • How do you calculate the value of a personal injury claim?

  • What you should do if another party causes your injury

  • How a New York City personal injury attorney can help you after an accident

What is a Personal Injury Claim?

A personal injury claim, whether due to an accident or medical malpractice, is a civil claim for damages arising from an injury caused by another individual or company.  The law recognizes not only monetary economic damages for lost earnings and payment of medical and other expenses, but also allows for pain and suffering which allows a jury to award you money for the changes in your life as a result of your injuries.  An experienced litigator such as my firm is needed to properly assess the value of your economic losses and pain and suffering claims under the law. 

Moreover, it is very important that you immediately seek representation if you have been injured in an accident, as claims against governmental entities (for example, the City of New York) or governmental associated entities (for example, NY City Transit, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Long Island Railroad, Board of Education, HUD housing) all have strict 90 day deadlines, with limited exceptions, in order to file a notice of claim before filing a lawsuit.  

Moreover, it is imperative that you obtain legal counsel as soon as an accident happens so that evidence may be gathered before it is gone.  This is especially true regarding surveillance footage or transient conditions which may change following an accident.

How Do I Know if I Have a Personal Injury Claim?

A personal injury claim might also arise out of negligence (failure to use reasonable care) and intentional wrongdoing. 

Examples of personal injury claims including slipping on snow or ice on a sidewalk, tripping and falling in a sidewalk defect or down a staircase, slipping and falling inside of a building, an automobile accident, an Ubur, taxi, June, or Lyft accident, a police brutality claim, or construction site accident.

Medical malpractice is a type of personal injury case. For instance, a doctor in a medical malpractice case might be negligent in failing to perform required diagnostic tests to diagnose your illness or condition, leading you to suffer injuries. The doctor might be liable for your damages under a medical malpractice claim if the doctor’s negligence led to injuries or damages. 

An example of an intentional injury that might be compensated under New York’s personal injury laws is an injury that results from an intentional assault such as being assaulted by a drunk patron at a bar or restaurant.  However, you can also potentially make a claim against the bar or restaurant for its negligence in failing to provide a safe premise. 

The easiest way to know whether you have a personal injury claim is to contact our New York City personal injury attorney for a free consultation. One of our NYC personal injury lawyers reviews your case and examines the evidence to determine if the other party’s actions or inactions led to your injuries. If so, you might be entitled to compensation for damages caused by the incident or accident. 

Common Types of Personal Injury Cases in New York City

A personal injury case can arise from a variety of circumstances. Below are common examples of the types of accidents and situations that might result in a personal injury case in New York:

A thorough investigation is required to gather evidence that proves the negligence, errors, mistakes, or other wrongdoing of the other party resulted in the incident that led to the injury. 

For example, in a slip and fall claim, evidence is required proving that the property owner did not take reasonable steps or precautions to keep the premise safe, causing an accident. 

There are strict laws in New York County requiring landowners of certain multifamily units and commercial buildings for keeping the sidewalk free of tripping and slipping hazards. 

 If you have slipped or fallen because of snow and ice left on the sidewalk.  New York City law, (§ 16-123 Removal  of snow,  ice and dirt from sidewalks) requires  “Every owner,  lessee, tenant,  occupant, or other person, having  charge of any building or lot of ground in the city, abutting upon any street where the sidewalk is paved, shall, within four hours after the snow ceases to fall, or after the deposit of any dirt or other material upon such sidewalk, remove the  snow or ice, dirt, or other material from the sidewalk and gutter, the time between nine post meridian and seven ante meridian not being included in the above period of four hours. “ If the sidewalk where you slipped on snow or ice is adjoining a one or two family dwelling unit, the law places the burden of removing snow and ice from the adjoining sidewalk on the City of New York. 

For an accident in the subway, the evidence must show that the responsible party, either New York City, NYC Transit’s actions or inactions directly contributed to the cause of the victim’s injuries to prove the city is responsible for an NYC subway accident. Even an adjoining landowner can, in some instances, be at fault for the happening of an accident occurring on property abutting a subway.

Investigating personal injury cases and gathering evidence to prove fault can be a complicated, painstaking task. It requires a team of experienced legal and industry professionals who have a thorough understanding of the law and the process. 

Our New York City personal injury attorneys have extensive experience investigating and handling a variety of personal injury cases, including cases involving the above situations. We understand the legal elements required to prove fault and the steps needed to conduct a comprehensive investigation. Our legal team consists of skilled, highly-trained, experienced professionals who utilize a variety of resources, including experts from various industries, to conduct investigations and gather the evidence we need to prove another party caused your injury.

Common Injuries Sustained in Personal Injury Accidents

Accident injuries range from lacerations and bruises to life-threatening conditions. The type of accident impacts the severity of a person’s injuries. 

For instance, a commercial truck accident on the interstate more often results in traumatic injuries and death compared to a car accident involving two passenger vehicles in downtown New York City. However, even a minor fender bender can result in catastrophic injuries. The exact circumstances and facts in the case determine the type and severity of the injuries each victim sustains.

Common accident injuries that New York City personal injury lawyers routinely handle in our personal injury practice include:

  • Broken bones and complex fractures

  • Head and brain injuries, including traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and concussions

  • Shoulder and neck injuries, including whiplash and other soft tissue injuries

  • Spinal cord and back injuries, including paralysis, herniated discs, and fractured vertebrae

  • Amputations 

  • Scarring and disfigurement, including severe burns

  • Damage to internal organs and internal bleeding

  • Facial injuries and damages

  • Wrist and ankle injuries

  • Loss of sensory function, such as loss of sight or hearing

  • Emotional and Mental disorders, including depression, PTSD, and anxiety disorders

  • death

The injuries caused by an accident, negligence, or malpractice can be devastating for the individual and the family. In some cases, personal injuries can have life-altering consequences, as in the case of permanent impairments and disabilities. A person may be unable to work, care for themselves, or care for their family because of their injuries. A person’s injuries have a direct impact on the value of their personal injury claim.

What is My Personal Injury Claim Worth?

Calculating the value of a personal injury claim is not as simple as adding together the total financial losses and multiplying by a certain number. However, many insurance companies and other legal sources might take this approach. 

Our NYC personal injury attorneys examine each factor in a case and utilize a team of doctors, engineers, and financial analysts to ensure that we calculate the maximum value for your injury claim.

Some of the factors that impact the value of a personal injury claim include:

Your Injuries

The severity and type of injuries directly impact the value of your claim. Severe injuries typically result in significantly greater financial damages, including medical costs, personal care, and loss of income. Traumatic injuries and catastrophic injuries also result in higher claims for pain and suffering damages.

If you sustain a permanent impairment or disability, your claim is worth more because you may be entitled to recover compensation for the loss of quality of life due to the disability and future financial damages, including ongoing medical and personal care, loss of future wages, and loss of earning potential. 

Fault 

Our legal team is diligent and aggressive when investigating your claim to ensure we uncover all evidence of fault.

Also, New York is a pure comparative fault state. Under comparative fault, your compensation can be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to you for the cause of the accident that led to your injury. For example, if a jury finds that you contributed 30 percent to the cause of your car accident, your compensation is reduced by 30 percent.  However, in certain types of accidents, such as certain accidents involving ladders, scaffolds, scissor lifts, or working at a height, the laws are strict and there is no comparative negligence allowed. For example, if while working at a construction site you fall off of a ladder because either it was defective, or it was the wrong tool for the job (you should have been provided a scissor lift, for example, which would have prevented your fall), the owner and general contractor can be strictly 100% liable, regardless of your comparative fault.  

Jurisdiction of Claim

The court that has jurisdiction over your injury claim can also impact the value of your claim. Insurance companies monitor jury awards in each jurisdiction. They are aware of how much juries award plaintiffs in various personal injury lawsuits. Therefore, if your case is in a jurisdiction in which juries award lower amounts for personal injury lawsuits, the insurance company may offer less to settle your claim. However, our legal team also monitors these cases and our experience handling personal injury matters gives us additional knowledge to know whether it is best to settle an injury claim or proceed to trial.

Hiring A Personal Injury Lawyer in NYC

Insurance companies are also familiar with the various personal injury attorneys throughout New York. Companies know which law firms routinely settle cases quickly for cheap (commonly referred to as mills) and which law firms have a reputation for aggressive and diligent representation of clients. When an insurance company knows that that a law firm will not settle unless the full value of a case is paid, the company will most likely offer far more to settle your claim than it would to another law firm who has the reputation of not being willing to go to trial.  It is very important to hire a law firm who has a strong reputation, is not afraid to go to trial, and who has the money and access to strong experts in order to do so. All law firms are not alike.

Our New York City personal injury lawyers are experienced and talented trial attorneys who are not afraid of going to trial when it is best for our clients’ interests and will spend the money to do so.

While we attempt to settle personal injury claims through negotiation and mediation, we prepare each injury case as if we were going to trial, which means that we are better prepared to negotiate a higher settlement or proceed with a personal injury lawsuit when an insurance company refuses to negotiate in good faith or does not offer enough to settle your claim. Many other factors might impact the value of your personal injury claim. Our NYC personal injury attorneys provide additional detail regarding this topic during your free case review

What Should I Do If I am a Victim of an Accident or Another Party Injures Me?

Your health is your first priority after an injury. It is always best to seek immediate medical attention, even if you do not believe you are seriously injured. Some accident injuries may not produce symptoms for days or even weeks after the injury. Also, delays in medical care can negatively impact your personal injury claim. The insurance provider or a defense attorney might claim that the delay in medical treatment means you were not injured in the accident, or your injury is not as severe as you now claim.

Some general tips for steps to take after an accident include:

  • Report the accident immediately. For a traffic accident call 911. If you are injured on another person’s property, report the injury to the property owner immediately. 

  • Seek medical attention for your injuries.

  • Document the accident scene by taking photographs and making videos with your cell phone, if it is safe to do so.

  • Ask bystanders and eyewitnesses for their names and contact information.

  • Never admit fault.

  • Keep detailed notes of all conversations with parties related to the injury or accident.

  • Contact one of our New York City personal injury attorneys as soon as possible for a free consultation

How Can The Law Office of Natascia Ayers Help You After an Injury?

Our New York City personal injury lawyers are seasoned civil litigators. We handle all types of injury claims, including the most challenging cases. Our legal team uses the skills, resources, and expertise they have gained from years of handling personal injury claims to investigate your case and gather the necessary evidence to prove fault and liability. We work closely with you and your physicians to document your injuries, damages, and losses to maximize the compensation you may receive for your claim. 

Our NYC personal injury lawyers also work with experts, when necessary, to ensure that your case receives the expertise necessary to build a strong case for full compensation of all damages. We handle all aspects of your personal injury case so that you can focus on what is most important — recovering from your injuries and caring for your family.

Contact Our New York City Personal Injury Attorneys for a Free Case Review

Learn more about personal injury claims and how we can help you by scheduling a free consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys in New York City. You can contact The Law Office of Natascia Ayers by calling 646-396-5417 or by sending us a message online.


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