Long Island Improper Lane Change Attorney

long island improper lane change attorney When drivers make improper lane changes, they violate traffic laws and can easily cause a crash. In addition, when someone in the other vehicle suffers injuries, they could have a case to seek compensation from the at-fault driver.

You could seek fair compensation if you suffered injuries in a crash caused by an improper lane change. A car accident attorney can help you understand your next steps and how a law firm can represent your best interests through an insurance claim or civil lawsuit.

Were you or a member of your family involved in a collision when another driver was changing lanes? If you or your loved one suffered injuries, or a member of your family died in a collision caused by another driver, you can hold the at-fault driver responsible for the financial aftermath of the collision. Additionally, you can recover for pain and suffering damages.

Every driver has a responsibility to share the road safely with other drivers. If another driver struck you while improperly changing lanes, a Long Island Improper Lane Change Lawyer can help you hold that driver financially responsible for their actions.

What Is an Improper Lane Change?

Improper and unsafe lane changes occur when a driver violates traffic laws and puts others in a dangerous situation because they changed lanes. For example, according to New York law, a driver must remain in their lane and not move into an adjacent lane until they can safely do so. They also need to use turn signals and give other nearby drivers plenty of space.

Drivers should not weave in and out of traffic, change lanes recklessly, or pass on the right unless necessary. An improper lane change could occur when:

  • The driver fails to clear the adjacent lane before moving into it.
  • The driver does not signal for other drivers that they intend to move over.
  • The driver crosses a double-yellow line, a solid yellow line, or another solid line.
  • The driver passes illegally, such as on the shoulder or in a turn lane.

To pass properly, a driver must:

  • Clear the adjacent lane, including carefully looking for motorcycles and other smaller vehicles
  • Use their turn signal at least 100 feet before you change lanes
  • Check for vehicles close behind you in the adjacent lane
  • Double-check blind spots in the adjacent lane by looking over their shoulder
  • Move completely into the adjacent lane
  • Repeat the process if they need to move back over after passing

Ensuring you take these steps every time you change lanes protects you from expensive traffic tickets, crashes, injuries and damages, and possible civil cases if someone else suffers injuries.

For a free legal consultation with a improper lane changes accidents lawyer serving Long Island, call 516-451-7900

Improper Lane Changes Cause Collisions and Injuries

Improper lane changes can cause several crashes, including sideswipe collisions. However, head-on crashes, rollovers, and single-car crashes can also happen. Where they occur and how they happen generally determine the type of crash. For example, head-on collisions happen more commonly when the at-fault driver crosses the centerline of a two-lane road to pass.


Sideswipe crashes are a common collision after an improper lane change. The careless driver merges into the car in the adjacent lane, and the sides of the two vehicles make contact. This will most likely occur on a four-lane highway or interstate.

The severity of these collisions depends greatly on the speed of the vehicles and any secondary collisions with other nearby cars. They can prove especially dangerous for motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians, who do not have much protection against a passenger vehicle. Unfortunately, these road users can prove harder to see than other cars, making them more likely to become victims.

Head-On Collision

It may seem improbable that a head-on collision occurs because of an improper lane change, but it can occur. This generally happens on a two-lane highway. Failing to account for oncoming traffic means moving into a lane the driver did not clear, causing the two vehicles to collide head-on.


Rollovers occur most frequently because a driver runs off the road trying to avoid a crash or because of the force from a collision. As a result, the shoulder drops off, causing the vehicle to roll on its side or top. Rollovers can also occur when one driver loses control of a truck or SUV while trying to avoid a crash. Sometimes, tall vehicles roll from the force of the collision.

Single-Car Incident

Sometimes, the at-fault driver never makes contact with the victim’s vehicle. The victim recognizes the situation and takes evasive action to avoid the collision. However, this leads to a crash when the driver loses control, runs off the road, hits another vehicle or object, or rolls the vehicle. Lawyers can often still hold the driver liable for making the improper lane change if they know the driver’s identity and can prove negligence and liability.

The injuries a victim suffers in an improper lane change crash depend greatly on the circumstances. Speed, where the crash occurs, and other details matter. A head-on collision at high speed can prove much worse than a sideswipe crash at a much slower speed. Serious and catastrophic injuries can occur in many types of crashes. One type of crash does not necessarily lead to milder or more severe injuries.

These collisions can cause:

  • Concussions, skull fractures, and traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Serious fractures
  • Traumatic amputation
  • Burns and scarring

Each of these injuries can require extensive, ongoing medical care and support that will likely last much longer than your insurance claim or civil case. For this reason, the firm also needs to understand your ongoing and future medical needs before pursuing fair compensation.

Long Island Improper Lane Changes Accidents Lawyer Near Me


Who Bears Legal Responsibility for an Improper Lane Change Crash?

Under no-fault insurance laws, drivers may first turn to their insurance coverage to recover their losses. However, when they face serious injuries that go beyond their coverage options, they could bring a case against the responsible driver. Identifying the liable party in an improper lane change collision proves essential to recovering compensation for the expenses and losses the victim suffered.

Understanding how fault works in a collision case is important. Drivers cause crashes by acting carelessly or recklessly, usually violating traffic laws. The legal world calls this negligence.

These four elements must exist in your case to show that negligence occurred:

  • Duty of care, usually created by a traffic law
  • Breach of duty
  • Causation
  • Harm

When it comes to improper lane change crashes, the duty of care comes from traffic laws that dictate when and how drivers can change lanes. When they violate one of these laws, it breaches their duty. This can cause a collision, and the victim suffers physical and psychological harm and undue financial costs.

Evidence in an Car Crash

If a victim can prove negligence, showing the driver bears liability is much easier. A car accident attorney can often prove helpful when navigating this process. They know how to uncover and gather the evidence needed to document what happened.

This could include:

  • The police report filed about the collision
  • A survey of the crash scene
  • Relevant medical records
  • Video of the collision, when available
  • Crash reconstruction data
  • Physical evidence
  • Eyewitness interviews
  • Working with medical experts and economists
  • Documents showing financial expenses and losses

In almost every case, the at-fault driver bears legal responsibility for the injuries. However, more than one liable party can bear responsibility in some cases. This often holds when the at-fault driver held a commercial driver’s license and was behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle. In addition, in some cases, state laws support vicarious liability for the driver’s employer, although exceptions exist for contract-based drivers.

This means your attorney could hold both the driver and their company legally responsible for the injuries and damages you suffered. After this type of crash, you will want an attorney to handle your case. You do not want to face a trucking company and its legal team on your own.

Law Firms Can Help After a Collision

Working with a law firm familiar with the traffic laws and auto insurance structure in your state can prove invaluable.

Having an attorney on your side comes with many advantages, including:

  • They have familiarity with the laws, processes, and many insurance companies.
  • They can determine the best option for pursuing compensation.
  • They know when you need to file a lawsuit.
  • They use proven negotiation tactics to get an agreement in your case.
  • They understand the tactics insurers use to undercut a fair payout.
  • They will protect your rights and help you seek fair compensation.
  • They know how to document and calculate your damages.

Your attorney will handle your legal claim or insurance negotiations while you focus on healing and getting back to work or recovering as much as your injuries allow. You should not have to manage an insurance claim or get a fair payout on your own when you can work with an attorney who knows how to navigate the claims process and secure compensation.

You take care of your health. Let your attorney handle everything else.

Your Right to Pursue Compensation After an Improper Lane Change Crash

When someone acts carelessly or recklessly and causes a crash, the victims have a right to recover compensation based on the financial and intangible damages they suffered. Most states offer this opportunity under tort laws, but every state has different requirements and may establish injury thresholds for filing a lawsuit. Those with serious or catastrophic injuries can typically pursue fault-based damages.

When you pursue a fault-based case against the at-fault driver, you could:

  • File an insurance claim based on their auto liability coverage and negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement
  • File a personal injury lawsuit and ask the jury to award a fair payout at trial

Most successful cases end with an insurance settlement, even if the victim sues the driver. Traffic collision cases rarely go to trial. They could settle during the early stages of the process or through mediation. If mediation fails, the judge will likely set a trial date.

Possible Compensation

Through this process, you can recover damages based on the expenses and losses you endured. These vary from case to case, and every claim has its own possible settlement range.

However, in most crash injury claims and lawsuits, you could seek damages, including:

  • Related medical care, including ambulance expenses, stabilization, treatment, surgery, hospitalization, outpatient follow-up, rehabilitation, therapies, medication, adaptive equipment, and more
  • Future treatment and care costs, ongoing support expenses, and other future needs as estimated by a medical expert familiar with the victim’s injuries, prognosis, and needs
  • Income losses incurred while the victim or a parent of the victim missed work because of injuries and treatment
  • Reduced earning capacity if the victim has lasting injuries that prevent them from working or earning their previous income
  • Miscellaneous expenses related to the crash, injuries, and treatment
  • Pain and suffering and other noneconomic damages

As mentioned, some states limit the ability to pursue compensation in a fault-based claim unless you suffer serious injuries. For example, New York requires all drivers to carry no-fault insurance.

These policies only cover basic expenses and losses, including:

  • Medical bills
  • A portion of lost income
  • A small daily allowance for related expenses such as parking at the hospital or mileage for doctor visits

No-fault policies only pay up to policy limits. When injuries prove serious, this coverage does not pay for any pain and suffering the victim experienced. For these reasons, a fault-based claim or lawsuit can often prove most beneficial. This is possible when injuries prove serious or surpass the limits of the no-fault policy.

A car crash attorney in your state can assess your case to determine your options based on the applicable state laws. Lawyers can often pursue damages in these cases through an auto liability insurance claim and negotiated settlement. However, personal injury lawsuits can sometimes prove necessary. You can still receive a settlement agreement after filing a lawsuit. Sometimes, filing a suit prompts the insurer to offer more money.

Deadlines May Apply

Generally, deadlines exist for filing a lawsuit. You must understand the applicable deadline, any exceptions, and how those exceptions could affect your rights.

New York set these general deadlines for filing lawsuits:

However, some exceptions exist. For instance, suing a municipality or government agency may reduce how long you have to get started. For this reason, work with an attorney as early as possible. They can tell you when to make decisions, meet all applicable deadlines, and protect your rights.

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Learn More About Your Legal Options Today

When another driver makes an improper lane change and you suffer collision injuries, you may have options to hold that driver accountable and recover compensation. One good way to learn more about your rights is to speak with a car accident law firm near you about the circumstances of your Long Island crash and the injuries you suffered.

They will also explain their services and fees, answer your questions, and discuss how they helped other clients hurt in similar crashes. This should help you decide whether the firm makes a good fit for you and if you want to hire an attorney to manage your claim or lawsuit.
Contact an attorney as soon as your injuries allow to ensure you protect your right to pursue the maximum compensation available.


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Practice Areas

Our Long Island Injury Lawyers Have Experience In

Truck Accidents
Accidents on the highways can be lethal events
Bicycle Accidents
Riding a bicycle should not be unsafe
Car Accidents
If you have been seriously injured, call our firm
Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents often result in serious injury
Medical Malpractice
Medical mistakes can cause death ruin lives
Wrongful Death
When negligence results in the death of a loved me
Premises Liability
When hurt in a location, someone has to take responsibility
Brain Injury
Brain injuries can have long term severe effects
Dog Bites
Dog bites can cause serious injury


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