Hudson Valley Personal Injury Lawyers
Compassionate Advocacy in Warwick & Surrounding Areas
If you or someone you love is suffering from an injury obtained at the hands of another person’s negligence, our Hudson Valley personal injury lawyers can make a difference in your case. The Ahearne Law Firm is proud to provide tireless representation for injured victims and their families. Our comprehensive knowledge and skill make a huge difference for our clients during some of the most challenging moments in their lives.
Personal Injury Cases We Handle
An injury can change your life. Time and time again, we have seen those harmed by the negligent actions of another person affected by the unwillingness of the person responsible or the insurance company to pay what the injured person is owed. It is during these times that an experienced personal injury attorney can help stand up for your rights.
Our attorneys can handle a wide variety of issues, including:
It is our goal to support our clients through the physically and emotionally difficult times ahead. We work on your behalf to recover financial compensation medical expenses, lost wages, physical therapy, and the loss of quality of life.
Personal Injury Lawsuits: Accidents, Liability & Damages
People suffer life-altering injuries for many reasons, and often times their claims are denied by insurance companies or those responsible. Traumatic experiences can cause immense physical and emotional pain and suffering. Many lawsuits are not pursued by the injured parties or their families because they do not realize their accident and injury was the fault of another person. It is wise to look for signs of a potential personal injury for which a lawsuit could protect you financially:
Someone Else Caused the Accident
Any time you’re in an accident that involves another party, there might be cause for a personal injury claim. That person could have made unwise or negligent choices that resulted in the accident. For example, if you were rear-ended because someone was texting, you have grounds to sue that driver for distracted driving. Drunk driving is another example of a situation in which someone might cause an accident for which he or she should pay.
Negligence Caused the Accident
Negligence applies to any decision or lack of one that could lead to an injury down the road. For example, a store owner who leaves obstacles on the sidewalk in front of the shop could be charged as negligent if someone trips over them and gets hurt. Factories and machine operators must also ensure that all belts are covered and safety procedures followed to the letter, because if someone gets hurt as a result of failed safety measures, they could be held liable. Negligence is also common in health-care scenarios. A nurse who administers the wrong medication, or releases sensitive information to unauthorized personnel, or a doctor who commits an error, can be subject to a justified personal injury suit.
You Have Lasting Emotional Distress
Personal injury compensation extends beyond medical bills and repairing the damage to your property. In some cases, you might experience serious emotional distress as a result of the incident. This can have an adverse impact on your relationships, make it difficult to work, and affect other facets of your life in negative ways. You might also face higher medical bills when you seek professional help as a result of your emotional distress. Many accidents can lead to post-traumatic stress symptoms, including extreme anxiety, depression, emotional stress, an inability to participate in certain activities, and more. If your pain and suffering become a long-term condition, you deserve compensation to ease your altered way of life.
The At-Fault Party Does Not Have Liability Insurance
If you get injured on the job or at a commercial establishment, you would hope that the other party’s liability insurance (such as workers compensation policies) would cover the damages. Not all companies have adequate insurance coverage for such events, however. In addition, you might get hurt on someone’s personal property, and he or she probably wouldn’t have liability insurance to cover your expenses. You might wonder how you’d pay for your medical bills and altered way of life. If the at-fault party refuses to pay for damages, you can pursue a personal injury claim in court. It may be a stressful and daunting prospect, but once you’ve gone through it, you might well end up with the adequate financial coverage.
The Accident Led to Property Loss and Damages
In most personal injury cases, compensatory damages are front and center. This refers to money owed to cover the cost of repairing damaged items and any other incurred loss. If your car is knocked out of commission in a collision that wasn’t your fault, for example, the defendant will be charged for its repair or replacement. The same goes for damage to other personal property of value.
You’re Unable to Work Because of Your Accident
Some injuries can alter your lifestyle so significantly that you’re no longer able to work. If you don’t have disability insurance, the pursuit of a personal injury claim can help. If you were injured because of workplace negligence, the company owes you compensation for both lost wages and recovery. Discuss your options with a local attorney, and recognize your right to take back your life despite your injuries.
3 Main Legal Bases for Personal Injury Cases in NY
If you’ve been injured through no fault of your own, you may wonder whether you have a legitimate personal injury case. There are three main bases for personal injury claims, and they are as follows:
Negligence - This is the most common basis for personal injury lawsuits. Negligence exists when another person or entity causes your injuries due to their own lack of attention and/or care. An example of negligence is when someone is looking away from the road while driving because they’re responding to a text message and subsequently rear-end your vehicle. If you sustain injuries as a result of the collision, you may be able to sue them for damages.
Strict liability - This is a less common basis for personal injury lawsuits, but is a crucial and expanding area of tort law. This basis holds designers and manufacturers strictly responsible for injuries that result from defective products. Strict liability does not require you to demonstrate negligence from the manufacturer. Instead, you must prove that the product was designed or manufactured in such a way that it was inherently dangerous when used as expected.
Intentional wrongs - This basis is rare but significant. For instance, if another person causes you harm by laying hands on you, even as a practical joke, you may have a chance to file a suit for battery. Or, another scenario could be that a store clerk unjustly holds you for shoplifting and then you can file a suit for unlawful imprisonment. Some perpetrators of intentional wrongs, such as assault and battery, may be criminally responsible for their behavior. However, a personal injury suit is a civil proceeding in court presented by an individual or entity and has nothing to do with criminal charges brought by the government.
Personal Injury Law Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What Should I Do After an Accident?
If you’ve been in an accident in which you sustained injuries, the first thing you should do is seek medical care. If you’re not immediately rushed to the emergency room, the next thing you should do is document the scene of the accident. Take images and/or videos and get information from any witnesses present.
Never admit fault or apologize to anyone involved in the accident, even if it seems like it’s the right thing to do. Anything you admit following an accident may be used against you later. If you believe someone else is responsible for the incident, it’s a good idea to set up a consultation with an attorney to go over your options.
How Will I Know if I Have a Valid Case?
You don’t need to decide by yourself whether you have a case. Once you speak to an attorney, they’ll be able to tell you whether your case is valid. An experienced attorney will assess the facts and determine who may be liable for your injuries as well as what you may be able to recover under New York Insurance Threshold Law.
In most instances, you will have a case if another person acted negligently which caused you to sustain injuries. This may sound simple, but proving negligence is not always easy, which is why it’s a good idea to allow an experienced attorney to handle it for you.
What is the Statute of Limitations for a Personal Injury Case in New York?
The statute of limitations in New York for personal injury cases is three years for most case types. This means you have three years from the date of your injury to file a claim or you will most likely lose your right to do so along with your right to recover compensation.
- For negligence in car accident personal injury cases, the state of New York allows three years from the date of your accident to file a suit.
- For medical malpractice, the statute of limitations in New York is two years and six months from the date of the malpractice or from the end of continuous medical care.
- For other negligence that resulted in personal injury, the statute of limitations is three years from the date of the accident.
- For slip and fall injuries, the statute of limitations is three years from the date of the accident.
- For product liability, the statute of limitations is also three years from the date of the accident and/or discovery of the injury, such as in medical device implant cases.
- Lastly, the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases is two years from death.
How Do I Handle A Call From an Insurance Adjuster?
If an insurance adjuster for someone else involved in the accident gives you a call, do not give them any information. They may appear to be warm and comforting, but it’s guaranteed they’re doing whatever they can to get you to admit something to put you at fault for the accident.
If you have an attorney for your case, refer the adjuster to your attorney so they can do the talking for you. If you don’t have an attorney for your case, contact your insurance company. If an attorney for someone else involved in the accident contacts you, also refer them to your attorney. Don’t speak to anyone attempting to collect information for the other party involved in the incident.
What Damages May I Recover in a Personal Injury Case?
The primary form of damages is compensatory damages, which are then categorized into economic and non-economic damages.
- Economic damages involve tangible, objective expenses and losses, including medical bills, lost income, earning capacity, property damage, and future medical care expenses.
- Non-economic damages tend to be more subjective and include pain and suffering, mental anguish, and life enjoyment loss. In order for damages to be awarded, they must be fairly quantifiable, instead of being speculative.
You may also be able to recover punitive damages if the defendant has been conducting themselves in an exceptionally shocking way, such as reckless and wanton behavior or gross disregard for safety. Punitive damages are designed to serve as a punishment in the hopes the party liable for your injuries will not act in such a manner in the future. It is rare for punitive damages to be awarded, but they may be significant if they are awarded.
How Will I Know How Much My Case is Worth?
Your case will need to be thoroughly investigated and your injuries fully assessed before you may learn how much compensation you’ll likely recover. Keep in mind that attorneys are legally barred from promising to recover a certain amount of compensation for you or for forecasting the conclusion of your case.
It may also be a good idea to ask an attorney how much of the recoverable damages you’ll truly be able to collect. Your actual recoverable damages will be based upon the insurance of the at-fault party(s), their assets, your own insurance policy, and potentially your own contribution to the fault of the incident, if any.
Keep in mind, no attorney will be able to provide a proper assessment of your recovery until after discovery in your case is complete. That means that all documents will have to be exchanged between you and the defendant, such as your medical records and the defendant’s insurance coverages and depositions will also have to be completed. This is why you need an experienced attorney.
Should I Hire an Attorney for My Personal Injury Case?
Unlike insurance companies, The Ahearne Law Firm is a true advocate on your side. Committed to fighting for the compensation you deserve; our firm will work for your best interest every step along the way. More often than not, insurance companies are not looking out for your best interest, instead they are focused on what will save their company the most amount of time or money. Learn more about how we can help you today.
A Seasoned Legal Team Ready to Stand Up for You
Not only do personal injury cases need a seasoned attorney with a wealth of experience, but also require input from medical professionals, insurance, investigators, private investigators, and others that can help piece together the facts of the case to prove fault. When you are facing physical, emotional, and financial struggles after an injury, place your trust in the successful legal team at The Ahearne Law Firm.
We provide representation for personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay nothing out of pocket unless you are paid for your injury. Meet with our personal injury lawyers in Hudson Valley by reaching out to our office online or by phone at (845) 763-4100.