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Long Island Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have been injured in an accident caused by someone’s wrongful conduct, you need a personal injury attorney. An experienced attorney will ensure that your rights are protected and advocate for your financial recovery. Our law firm handles every type of personal injury claim, including car accidents, construction accidents, wrongful death claims, brain injuries, medical malpractice, and premises liability. Contact a Long Island personal injury lawyer at Sullivan, Papain, Block, McGrath & Cannavo P.C. for a free consultation to discuss your injuries and potential compensation.

Our Personal Injury Team

  • Every client is important to our team, and we provide the highest quality legal service in every personal injury matter.
  • With the size of our law firm and wealth of resources, we are able to provide superior legal representation with a focus on maximizing our clients’ financial recoveries.
  • Over the past ten years, we have secured more than $2 billion in financial compensation for our clients.
  • No case is too large or complex for our personal injury team. Our attorneys have advocated for clients in big tobacco cases, World Trade Center disaster litigation, and the MGM Grand hotel fire.

Types of Cases We Handle

Our law firm handles every type of personal injury claim, including:

Retaining the assistance of a dedicated personal injury attorney is the first step towards pursuing the maximum amount of compensation that you deserve. 

New York Personal Injury Law Basics

Car Accidents

New York is a “no-fault” state, meaning car insurance claims do not determine which party causes an accident, as each party files a claim with their own insurer. As part of their liability coverage, drivers are required to carry $50,000 in no-fault insurance to cover any damages in the event of an accident. A no-fault policy will typically pay compensatory damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and to fix or replace property. However, when it comes to filing a lawsuit against an at-fault driver in New York, there are prerequisites that must be met. A claim must meet the “serious injury” threshold, which entails: 

  • Significant disfigurement;
  • Bone fracture;
  • Permanent limitation of use of body organ or member;
  • Significant limitation of use of body function or system; or
  • Remaining on full disability for 90 days or more. 

 

 

When a victim’s injuries qualify, they may pursue additional compensation for general damages, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, etc. 

Construction

 Labor Laws are intended to protect construction workers, who have the right to equipment and to be protected from harm. Under Labor Law 200,  owners and general contractors are mandated to provide a reasonably safe work environment. Workers are also specifically safeguarded by New York Labor Law Statutes 240 and 241. These statutes require construction site landlords or the job site’s general contractor to supply safety protection devices in order to prevent falls from heights and injuries from falling objects. Employees who are injured can file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits and may be able to sue several parties, such as the property owner, general contractor, sub contractors, or pro cut manufacturers. 

Premises Liability

Property owners owe a duty of reasonable care to lawful visitors, by keeping their property free from potential dangers. Owners or landlords who are negligent in keeping their property safe, may face a premises liability lawsuit when someone is injured on their property. Under New York law, victims must prove their claim by a “preponderance of evidence,” which means they must demonstrate that a premises owner was “more likely than not” responsible for their resulting injury. 

Medical Malpractice

Health care providers and hospitals are held to a standard of care that they must provide patients. The standard of care is the generally accepted method of treatment or care for a specific condition. However, this standard care will depend on a variety of factors, such as the particular medical situation and age of the patient. When there is a breach in the standard of care, resulting in a serious injury, the patient has the right to pursue a medical malpractice claim against the physician or hospital. 

Proving Negligence

Personal injury cases hinge on evidence of negligence, and it is often one of the most complex and technical components to prove.  Negligence is a failure in providing a duty of care resulting in loss or damage to another person. 

There are four main elements to proving negligence:

  • Duty of Care: First, the plaintiff (victim) must establish that the defendant owed an obligation of care. For example, a driver has a duty to drive safely to avoid colliding with other vehicles. 
  • Breach of Duty: The defendant did not act reasonably, therefore, breaching their duty of care. 
  • Causation: The defendant’s actions directly caused harm to the plaintiff. For example, if a driver had not run a red light or if a store owner had mopped up water on the floor, there would be no resulting injuries. 
  • Damages: The plaintiff suffered physical and/or economic damages, for which they can be financially compensated.

Even when a plaintiff sufficiently proves fault, a judge or jury can still hold them partially responsible for their injuries under New York’s law of pure comparative negligence. Plaintiff’s damages will be reduced proportionally to their share of fault. For instance, a victim who wasn’t wearing a seatbelt when another car collided into their vehicle may be found 30 percent at fault for their injuries. In this case, if the victim were awarded $1,000, their 30 percent share of the fault would reduce the amount to $700. 

Time Limits on Filing Personal Injury Lawsuits

Every state has a law limiting the amount of time injury victims have to seek financial compensation for their damages, known as a statute of limitations. Under N.Y. Civ. Prac. R. section 214, most types of personal injury claims must be brought within three years of the incident and wrongful death lawsuits within two years. Though, there are exceptions to this rule. Medical malpractice lawsuits have a deadline of two years and six months from either: February 

  • The date of the alleged malpractice; 
  • The last date of treatment, if receiving ongoing care for the same condition from the same physician; or
  • The date a patient discovers a missed cancer diagnosis, as long as it is within seven years from the date of the failure to diagnose.

New York’s “Discovery Rule,” allows one year from the date that a patient discovers a foreign object has been left in their body, or within one year of the date the patient should have discovered the object. The statute of limitations also makes an exception for minor children, who are allowed to pursue a medical malpractice claim until two and a half years past their eighteenth birthday, but it must be within 10 years of the alleged negligent act.

Victims who miss the deadline to file will likely lose their right to compensation, as the negligent party can assert the statute of limitations as a defense to liability.

How a New York Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help

Having a personal injury lawyer review your case after any type of injury-related accident will only serve to benefit you. Most lawyers who handle personal injury cases will evaluate your claim for free, as well as represent you on a contingency fee basis. This means there will be no out-of-pocket costs for you, as legal fees are only paid once you recover compensation. Additionally, an attorney can handle:   

Working With Insurance Companies

Insurance companies may contact you after your accident to discuss your version of events and the extent of your injuries. In our representation, we will handle all discussions and negotiations with insurance companies. Their goal is to minimize the value of your claim, but our experienced attorneys will protect you and your claim value. Our attorneys are professional but aggressive, and they will never encourage you to settle your claim for an amount that does not fairly compensate you.

Attorney Investigation

In order to prove your claim, we will conduct an investigation to gather facts and supporting evidence. We will interview witnesses, and we will be with you when defense attorneys interview you. We have many contacts with experts who may be needed for consultation and to offer testimony in your case. Medical experts may be needed to review your medical records, conduct an independent medical exam, and testify about your injuries. Experts are sometimes necessary for accident reconstruction to help prove accident facts and causation.

Valuing Your Claim

In placing a value on your personal injury claim, we will explore all of your injuries and damages, including future losses as well. Compensation may be available for medical bills and future medical care. If your injuries caused you to miss work, you might be entitled to receive compensation for lost wages. If your injuries result in a long-term or permanent disability that reduces your earning capacity, you might be entitled to recover for lost future earnings as well. Additional compensation may be available for property damage and your pain and suffering. Properly valuing your claim is critical in making sure that any settlement you accept will fully cover you for your losses.

Contact Us Today

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s fault, you need legal representation to help with your financial recovery. Contact Sullivan, Papain, Block, McGrath & Cannavo P.C. to speak with a member of our personal injury team. We take personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis so that attorneys’ fees are not collected until you have received compensation for your claim.