Personal Injuries in New York: Know Your Rights

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The rate of death from injuries in the state of New York is approximately 4 for every 10,000 people, according to the New York Department of Health. And the current hospitalization rate from injury is roughly 8 per 1,000 New Yorkers, or almost 1% of the population. This means that injury can affect anyone at any time. The National Center for Health Statistics reports that accidental injury is the leading cause of death for Americans less than 35 years of age. Personal injury is a very serious concern not just for New Yorkers, but for all Americans.

A personal injury is any kind of physical, mental, or emotional damage sustained from an accident through no fault of your own. This could be due to road traffic accidents, work accidents, tripping accidents, assault claims, product liability claims, and medical negligence claims. In the U.S., motor vehicle accidents account for a large number of personal injury settlements and lawsuits.

Between car and motorcycle accidents alone, it is estimated roughly over 6 million collisions occur in a given year, with nearly 3.1 million injuries and over 45,000 fatalities. Medical malpractice accounts for roughly 1.5 million injuries and 100,000 fatalities. And between other forms of personal injury, like dog bites, workplace accidents, and slip and fall accidents, there are roughly over 1.1 million people affected.

If you have been injured in any of these circumstances in New York, there are options for you that could lead to compensation for your suffering. Visit Zlotolaw & Associates law firm to learn more about what you should do in the event of a personal injury as well as the opportunities that could be available to you for compensation. Here are 8 important elements to consider:

  1. Obtain a police report. Having a police record could be vital to your case. As an official report with pictures and witness accounts serves as evidence of what took place on the scene and can leave little room for doubt should insurance companies attempt to hassle you over details.
  2. Seek medical attention. Obtaining medical documentation is essential to your claim. Just like a police report, it will serve as an official record of a doctor’s diagnosis of your condition and help you the same way a police report will.
  3. Have complete disclosure with your doctor. Be upfront and honest about the injuries you sustained. While a medical record may prove to benefit you and your case, it will invalidate your claim if you have lied or exaggerated your injuries, or have failed to disclose any prior injuries that may damage your case.
  4. Seek legal advice immediately. An attorney will help to evaluate the validity or your injury claim, fight for your rights to compensation, and prevent insurance companies from harassing you or attempting to deny you your rights. Any small detail they uncover could also help your case.
  5. Do not speak to an insurance company without legal representation. Never give a statement, sign a document, or provide a recorded statement without the consultation of an attorney. This is their attempt to settle out of court for substantially less than what you deserve in damages.
  6. Do not share sensitive information on social media. Refrain from sharing any information related to your case. If you treat your injury claim as an ongoing legal proceeding, it won’t be made available for insurance companies to use against you any way they can.
  7. Maintain medical appointments and treatment. Because medical records can be accessed by insurance companies, your failure to show up to appointments and maintain a treatment plan gives them a valid argument that your injury was not that serious.
  8. Do not exaggerate or lie about your injury. Just like your full disclosure with your doctor, misleading claims about your injury will hurt your case. Insurance companies can investigate your claim, and if they discover your lies, your case will be lost.

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