I was Involved in a Car Accident – Now What?

by Jose Enrique Perez

If you have been involved in a car accident, you have certain rights you can pursue. You can get medical treatment, lost wages and more importantly you can also be compensated. This article will discuss about getting that compensation. You will be filing a lawsuit where you will be the Plaintiff. On the other hand, the other driver will be called the Defendant. The lawsuit will become a game of insurance and the insurance policies. If a jury determines that a defendant was negligent and the negligence was a substantial factor in bringing about the plaintiff’s injuries, then the defendant will be obligated to pay the plaintiff damages.

Those damages will be paid by the defendant’s insurance company up to the policy limits of the defendant’s insurance policy. If the plaintiff’s damages exceed the limits of the defendant’s insurance policy, the plaintiff may pursue defendant’s assets in order to satisfy the judgment.

New York State law requires that owners of an automobile purchase a minimum of $25,000 of insurance coverage for each person injured in an accident, with total coverage of $50,000 when two or more people are injured. Anyone concerned about possible exposure to personal assets should consider purchasing automobile insurance with higher coverage limits, or even purchase an excess liability policy which will provide coverage in excess of the initial coverage purchased.

Because qualified injured plaintiffs are entitled to damages for past and future pain and suffering as well as past and future lost wages and loss of enjoyment of life, among other things, it is not uncommon to see jury verdicts awarding substantial amounts of money. Vehicle owners are well advised to purchase insurance sufficient to protect their personal assets in the event the vehicle is involved in an automobile accident. If vehicle owners have any questions about the limits of their insurance coverage, they should make sure to contact their automobile insurance agent or their insurance company directly.

Something outside the scope of this article, but worth mentioning is that if a lawyer is able to get for you defendant’s full policy amount, then you may be entitled to obtain additional monies from your own insurance policy under the supplemental underinsured motorist coverage. Therefore, it is really important that you contact an attorney if you or your family get involved in an accident.

You should remember that this article is not intended to provide you with legal advice; it is intended only to provide guidance or information about your rights if you have been involved in a car accident.  Furthermore, the article is not intended to explain or identify all potential issues that may arise in connection with this program or any new immigration policies. Each case is fact-specific and therefore similar cases may have different outcomes.

I represent individuals involved in car accidents. If you have any questions or concerns about a car accident case or potential case, you can call me at (315) 422-5673, send me a fax at (315) 466-5673, or e-mail me at joseperez@joseperezyourlawyer.com. The Law Office of Jose Perez is located at 659 West Onondaga Street, Upper Level, Syracuse, New York 13204. Now with offices in Buffalo and Rochester as well!!! Please look for my next article in the March edition and stay safe, get vaccinated or boosted and stay away from the Virus. In addition to our current practice of Personal Injuries, Work Accidents, Social Security and Immigration, we now also practice Criminal, Traffic, Family, DWI and Divorce. AND…. OF COURSE, IT IS FEBRUARY…. HAPPY 18TH BIRTHDAY CNY LATINO!!!

Car with broken windshield and Red car accident photos by Artyom Kulakov and Dominika Kwiatkowska from Pexels

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