What to do after a car accident in Queens, NY
Experiencing a vehicular collision can be immensely distressing. You might have suffered bodily harm and vehicular damage. Handling the aftermath of a crash can be nerve-wracking, and you might be concerned about the financial implications on your life.
Car Accident Cases: Numerous unfavorable outcomes can arise from a car crash, impacting your everyday life. Whether your vehicle has sustained damage, you require medical care, or you cannot work and are losing a significant amount of money, these factors can affect your ability to provide for yourself and your family. By employing a skilled attorney, you’ll not only receive top-notch legal advice and sidestep expensive errors, but you’ll also be able to lessen the adverse consequences of this dreadful event.
The New York Car Accident tips from All City Now Insurance Agency will teach you the dos and don’ts of car accident cases and provide a thorough understanding of the legal aspects of car accidents. All City Now Insurance Agency offers in-depth answers to some of the most common questions about car accidents.
What Are the Initial Steps to Take Following a Car Accident?
In the event of a car accident in New York, there are specific actions you must take. First, remain calm, evaluate the situation, and ensure that neither you nor anyone else near a vehicle needs urgent medical care. Once you’ve done this, assess your position on the road. Is your vehicle in a secure spot, or is traffic swiftly passing on both sides? If feasible, use your smartphone or camera to take pictures of the accident site. If it is safe, attempt to move your vehicle to a secure location until the police arrive. If your car is still operational, it is your responsibility to transport yourself and your passengers to a safe area.
- After ensuring your safety, contact the police and request a police report. A report should be filed whenever there is over $1,000 in damage to any vehicle in a car accident in Queens, NY or when anyone is injured to any degree. While waiting for the police, gather any insurance and registration information, and obtain details from all other drivers involved in the accident. It’s also crucial to collect accounts from witnesses. Often, witnesses will willingly provide their names and phone numbers, allowing for future contact if their input is needed. It’s common for the person responsible for the accident to change their story afterward, after speaking with insurance companies, consulting an attorney, or (for younger drivers) talking to their parents. To protect yourself, gather information before any external input can influence the situation.
- It’s recommended that anyone involved in an accident document everything the driver at fault says. This driver may admit guilt or apologize, then later deny having said anything of the sort. If the driver apologizes in front of others, accounts from these witnesses can be helpful. When a driver causes an accident and then makes comments against their interest, this constitutes party admission.
- Another issue to address during your emergency call is whether anyone involved in the accident needs medical attention. While police response is crucial, it’s also essential to summon emergency medical personnel. No-fault insurance will cover any medical treatment you receive, including ambulance rides and ER visits, so there’s no need to worry about hefty hospital bills.
- While safely waiting at the roadside, your responsibility is to take photographs of any skid marks, vehicle positions, and the extent of damage to both vehicles. If both vehicles are still drivable and neither is towed away or impounded, you might never see the other driver’s car or truck again. Capture photos at the scene while waiting for the police to arrive.
- Once the police have filed their report (after one to two days of processing time), request a copy. If you discover any errors in the report, notify the officers who attended the accident scene. To corroborate your claims, provide the officers with witness contact information.
What do I apply to the insurance company after a car accident in New York?
New York enforces obligatory minimum insurance requirements to register a car and drive legally. Be aware that possessing car insurance doesn’t preclude claims against you. Your insurance offers legal defense, but it might be wise to engage a private attorney if you’re concerned about damage costs exceeding your coverage. The minimum New York car insurance policies include:
- No-Fault (Personal Injury Protection): automatically covers economic loss from personal injuries up to $50,000 per person, irrespective of who is responsible for the accident.
- Liability Insurance (Bodily Injury and Property Damage): this policy protects you when facing a lawsuit. The minimum liability coverage amounts are:
- $25,000 for bodily injury (not resulting in death) or $50,000 for any injury causing death, sustained by any one person in any one accident;
- $50,000 for bodily injury (not resulting in death) sustained by two or more persons in any one accident, or $100,000 for any injuries causing death sustained by two or more persons in any one accident (subject to the above per person limits)
Uninsured Motorist Coverage offers bodily protection for you and your family members in case of injury caused by a hit-and-run or uninsured driver. The limits for this coverage are the same minimums mandated for liability insurance.
No-fault insurance covers your injuries and property losses, regardless of fault or responsibility on your part. Liability insurance is the type that makes payments on your behalf for any damages claimed against you. The higher your liability policy, the more coverage you’ll have if held accountable for damages like pain and suffering. If your liability coverage doesn’t cover the damages against you, you’ll be responsible for paying the difference from your own assets.
Legal repercussions, such as points on your license or loss of driving privileges, highlight the importance of determining liability, even if damages are covered by no-fault coverage. New York’s Comparative Negligence Law is utilized to determine the negligence of all parties involved and is applied when damages surpass the no-fault coverage.
There are two vehicle collision reports that you need to pursue:
- An instant report with local law enforcement from the accident site
- A written DMV report submitted within 10 days
In case of injury, you are obligated to report the incident by dialing 911 promptly, followed by submitting the DMV report. When a crash leads solely to property damage, contacting the police is only necessary if the owner is absent. If the owner is present, you must exchange details, but still file with the DMV within 10 days.
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