Every personal injury case is different, and the amount of compensation you can recover as a result of your injuries is determined by a number of factors, including:
- The severity of your injuries,
- The total value of your losses,
- Who is liable in your case and their degree of liability, and
- The strength of your case
One of the first things we must do after taking on a case, though, establishes that the other party’s negligent actions caused your injuries. We must also determine the degree to which they are liable.
Establishing Liability in Your Personal Injury
After taking on a new client, we immediately launch an investigation into their personal injury case, gathering evidence that allows us to prove liability and calculate the total value of their losses. Some of the evidence we collect includes:
- Police reports, medical records, and eyewitness statements
- Video surveillance
- Receipts, bills, and other documents that show the financial losses you incurred
In addition to providing that the other party was negligent, we must also establish the degree to which he or she was negligent. New York is a pure comparative negligence state. That means that even if you were partially responsible for your personal injury, you could still recover damages, they will just be reduced in proportion to your contribution to the injury. This means that if you were found to be 20% liable for your personal injury, for example, you are still entitled to 80% of the compensation awarded in your case.
Meeting the Serious Injury Threshold
Depending on the type of personal injury, you may have to meet a serious injury threshold in order to pursue benefits beyond those provided by the no-fault $50,000 limit.
The New York State Bar Association defines a serious injury as:
- Significant disfigurement
- Permanent loss of use of an organ, function, or system
- A significant limitation of use of a body function or system
- A medically determined injury or impairment that prevents the injured person from performing normal daily activities for 90 days
If it is determined that your injuries meet these requirements, you can pursue additional compensation not covered by your no-fault insurance, including the pain and suffering you endured because of the personal injury.
Types of Damages You May Recover
While every case is different, there are some common types of damages that victims are able to recover in personal injury cases. They include:
- Medical expenses, such as ambulance rides, hospital stays, surgical procedures, doctor’s examinations, and medication
- Ongoing treatment
- Physical, occupational, and other therapies
- Assistive devices like wheelchairs and walkers
- The repair or replacement of personal property
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Disfigurement or dismemberment
If your family member died as a result of his or her injuries, you may be entitled to:
- Pain and suffering
- Funeral and burial costs
- Loss of benefits and wages provided by the deceased
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of support and protection
- Loss of companionship
As you can see, there are a number of possible types of damages that you may be entitled to as a result of your personal injury. The severity of your injuries, the value of your losses, whether you were at all responsible for what happened, and the strength of your case are all factors that can impact the settlement in a case.
Rosenberg & Gluck, L.L.P. Can Help With Your Personal Injury Case
The lawyers at Rosenberg & Gluck, L.L.P. care about your future and are ready to fight for your legal rights. Call us today at (631) 451-7900 for a free, no-risk evaluation of your case. We can assist clients in Spanish, too. You may have a limited time to act under NY § 214.