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Long Island Accident Lawyer > Long Island Personal Injury Lawyer

Long Island Personal Injury Lawyer

Nassau County Personal Injury Firm Serving Long Island and New York City

When another person’s negligence causes you harm, you have the right to pursue a claim against them and have them compensate you for your injuries. This can be easier said than done, however. The burden is on you to prove your case – in court, if necessary – by proving that the other person was negligent, that their negligence was the cause of the accident and injury, and that your injuries justify the amount of compensation you are seeking. Meanwhile, the negligent person will likely be represented by their insurance company and their teams of experienced claims adjusters and attorneys. They can work against you every step of the way, arguing that their insured was not negligent, that your own negligence is to blame, or that your injuries are not very serious or are due to some preexisting condition or other accident.

When you put all of these factors together, it’s clear you need an experienced and successful personal injury lawyer on your side, advising you and representing you at every critical stage of your case. At Giuffré Law Offices, we focus exclusively on personal injury and wrongful death claims in Nassau County, Long Island and New York City. Call our offices in Garden City (Stewart Manor), Brooklyn or Queens for a free consultation. Our Long Island personal injury lawyers take the time to listen to your story, gather all relevant facts, and give you an honest assessment of your claim. Our lead attorney has over 20 years of legal experience and is prepared to take on any type of personal injury claim.

Do I need a lawyer to settle my case, or only if my case is going to trial?

You should get a lawyer any time you have a claim against a negligent driver or other negligent actor. Insurance company claims adjusters are trained and experienced to know how much your case is worth, how much they can get away with paying you, and how to convince you to take less than they owe you. You might be a skilled negotiator yourself, but you’ll still lack the essential information regarding what your claim is worth and the legal process involved in pursuing a claim. When insurance companies make settlement offers to people who don’t have a lawyer, they always offer far less than the claim is actually worth and less than what an attorney could get.

With over 20 years of legal experience, New York injury lawyer John Giuffré has as much or more in the way of knowledge and experience as the insurance company attorneys and claims adjusters on the other side. He has worked up enough cases to know what your claim is worth and how to get it. When insurance companies see that they are dealing with a skilled and experienced personal injury lawyer, they deal fairly and offer a reasonable settlement rather than face your attorney in front of a jury in court. The vast majority of personal injury cases settle without a trial, but unless you build a strong case and are ready to go to court, you won’t get full value for your claim.

At Giuffré Law Offices, we want you to be represented by a skilled and experienced lawyer, and we hope you choose us. Our goal is to get you results but, at the same time, make sure you are taken care of and made to feel as comfortable as possible while undergoing a difficult time in your life. To the extent possible, we aim to turn this negative situation into a positive experience for you.

New York City Personal Injury FAQs

You might not have ever dealt with a personal injury claim before, and the process for obtaining compensation can seem confusing and difficult. Insurance companies deal with claims every day, so they are very much in the driver’s seat when dealing with people who are unrepresented by legal counsel and unfamiliar with the process. Get educated by reading the answers below to frequently asked questions about personal injury in New York, and contact Giuffré Law Offices for help with a personal injury in Nassau County, Long Island or New York City. We’ll put our skills and experience up against the insurance company’s and make sure you are treated fairly and taken care of.

How long do I have to file a personal injury claim?

The deadline to file a lawsuit is established by a law known as a statute of limitations. Once this deadline is passed, courts won’t let you file a suit, so it’s very important to know and follow the applicable statute of limitations in your case. Unfortunately, New York has some of the most complex and varied statutes of limitations of any state, making it potentially very confusing to identify the applicable statute of limitations in a given instance.

The general rule in New York is that you have three years from the date of the injury to file a lawsuit, but there are many exceptions. This clock continues to run while negotiations are ongoing, so even if you think you are going to settle, it’s important not to let this deadline pass. Negotiations could extend past the deadline, and if a settlement isn’t reached, you could be shut out from recovering compensation.

Don’t rely on this three-year rule without talking to an attorney first, and don’t delay in getting in touch with a lawyer. There are actually lots of different timelines that could apply, depending on the type of case, the status of the plaintiff, the status of the defendant, and other factors. For instance, lawsuits against the Transit Authority must be brought within one year and four months of the accident, and you must give notice to municipal defendants much sooner than that to preserve your rights. In the case of latent injuries caused by exposure to harmful substances, such as lead poisoning, you have three years from the date the injury was discovered or should have been discovered with reasonable care.

You only have two and a half years to file a medical malpractice claim or 15 months in the case of a municipal hospital, although a law known as Lavern’s Law extends this timeframe in certain cases of a missed cancer diagnosis. If the medical error involved leaving a foreign object in your body after surgery, you have up to one year from the date you discovered or should have discovered the object.

New York law allows two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

What if the insurance company says the accident or injury was my fault?

This is actually a very common tactic of insurance companies to avoid liability or reduce the amount they have to pay. In New York, you can still recover compensation even if you were partly to blame, but the amount of any award you receive will be reduced in proportion to the percentage of negligence assigned to you.

Insurance companies, therefore, will try hard to paint you with as much blame as they can. Don’t let them bully you into taking less than they owe or giving up on your case. Talk to an experienced car accident or personal injury lawyer who can evaluate your situation and give you an honest assessment of whether and how much fault a jury would likely allocate to you. Knowing this can help you move forward toward a settlement or take your case to trial, if necessary.

What kinds of compensation can I recover for a personal injury?

Compensation for a personal injury, known in the legal word as “damages,” include recovery of all medical costs that have been incurred or likely will be incurred because of the injury. Medical expenses include things like doctor’s visits and hospitalization, prescriptions, therapy, prostheses, rehabilitation, or in-home nursing care or residency in a skilled nursing facility. You can also recover any lost wages or income for work you missed because of the injury. If you are disabled and unable to go back to work, you should be able to recover compensation for this lost earning capacity as well. Finally, you can recover for “non-economic damages” like your pain and suffering, emotional distress, mental anguish, or loss in quality of life caused by the accident.

Does New York allow juries to award punitive damages?

The purpose of punitive damages is to punish a negligent actor for especially bad or reckless behavior and serve as an example of the type of conduct New Yorkers will not put up with. Punitive damages can be appropriate in situations where a person’s recklessness showed a high level of disregard for the safety of others, as well as cases of willful, deliberate or intentional misconduct. Situations where punitive damages might be sought include car accidents caused by drunk drivers or cases of medical malpractice where doctors or hospitals actively tried to conceal their mistakes from being discovered. New York Public Health Law 2801-d also authorizes punitive damages against a nursing home that acted willfully or in reckless disregard of the lawful rights of a nursing home resident.

Help with Personal Injury Claims in Nassau County, Long Island and New York City

If you’ve been injured in a car accident or other personal injury situation in Nassau County, Long Island or New York City, call Giuffré Law Offices at 516-802-9912 for a free consultation. Our Long Island personal injury lawyers maintain offices in Brooklyn, Queens and Garden City/Stewart Manor, and we’ll come to you if you can’t come to us. Languages spoken in the office include English, Russian, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese, and there’s no fee until we recover for you.

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