How to use your Mobile Phone as a tool following a Car Accident?
Car accidents are common on roads around the world, and unfortunately, they can happen to anyone at any time. When a car accident happens, it's natural to feel overwhelmed and unsure what to do next. But did you know that your mobile phone can be a valuable tool in the aftermath of a car accident? From taking pictures to recording conversations and jotting down important details, there are many ways you can use your mobile phone to gather crucial information and protect yourself legally.
In this blog, we'll explore how you can use your mobile phone as a tool following a car accident and discuss how this information can be useful for insurance claims, legal disputes, and other purposes. So whether you're a seasoned driver or a new one, read on to learn how your mobile phone can be your best friend in the event of a car accident.
So here are some of the ways that you can use your smartphone following an accident:
1. Call 911
The first thing you need to do following a car accident is to dial 911. Next, you and anyone involved in the accident must get medical attention as soon as possible. Even if it seems as if you sustained no injuries, there could be internal bleeding which might become life-threatening following a delay.
2. Take pictures and Videos
You might need to present compelling evidence to build a solid case and get compensated for the ordeal you suffered. However, if you don’t act fast, the vehicles and scene can be cleaned, erasing all the evidence that could help your claim.
3. Record Witness Information
There are bound to be witnesses at the scene unless the accident happened in a dissolute land which is very unlikely. With your smartphone, try to record the witness's account and ask questions to get them to reveal more details.
4. Record the other driver’s insurance and license information
You may not be able to keep the driver at the scene for long, so the best you can do is capture essential details with your smartphone, such as the driver's name, address, driver’s license, and insurance details.
5. Capture your injuries
Before receiving medical treatment, ensure you take pictures and videos of your injury, if there are any. Your doctor’s report on your injuries should also be well preserved since it will help your claim.
6. Take Your Statement
If you can do this at the accident scene, that will be helpful. If you don’t record your statement following an accident, details of the incident may get blurry later. When you’re done with your smartphone, give us a call to help you secure total compensation for your injuries.
Should I Accept the First Settlement Offer
Insurance companies know just the right time to present a settlement offer to injury victims - that moment when you’re so desperate for some cash, with bills to pay. It is always tempting to take on the offer, but it is usually far less than the full value of your claim.
To ensure you’re on the right track, you must work with one of our attorneys to discuss the facts in your case. It will help you negotiate better and get compensated for what your claim is really worth.
Here are some of the factors you need to consider before you accept an offer from the insurance company.
Are future expenses covered?
The first offer is often used to test if you know your worth. You’re not in any way mandated to accept, especially if it’s a low-ball offer that doesn't cover future damages. While they may cover some economic expenses, they often forgo future expenses that might arise such as medical.
Before you accept, you need to make sure that the settlement covers both past and future economic expenses, including non-economic damages like pain and suffering. Discuss this with one of our attorneys and you’ll be properly guided on how to proceed.
Does it cover non-economic damages?
Most injury victims don't know that they have the right to seek compensation for their pain and suffering. Since insurance companies are not ready to cover such intangible factors, they proposed an inadequate offer with the hope you will walk away silently.
Take note that the insurance company is only looking out for itself, and will always shy away from paying full compensation if possible. Many injury victims are often ignorant of their rights, hence insurance companies get away with this.
Will rejecting the offer affect my settlement?
The insurance company might claim that rejecting the offer means no compensation at all. That is not true, and you shouldn't fall for this cheap tactic. The first offer is only the starting point of the negotiation.
You have the right to reject the first offer and propose even a better one. Typically, when you file an offer, you describe the nature of the situation, while making a demand for compensation. The insurance company can accept and reject the offer while making a counteroffer. You also have the same right, either to accept the offer or reject it.
This process will keep going on until both parties have agreed. That is why it is important to work with an experienced and qualified attorney during this negotiation process. They will help ensure you’re not intimidated into accepting a low-ball offer that does nothing to help your situation.
You deserve to be fully compensated for what your case is, so you can move on with your life as quickly as possible. Feel free to give us a call, or perhaps fill our contact form to begin.
What to do after a car accident in New York
What to do after a car accident in New York
Car accidents are quite rampant in New York, with reports from the New York Department of Health stating car accidents are responsible for 91-percent of the death occurrence throughout the state.
Car accidents are quite the experience no one wishes or prepares for. Hence, making car accident victims stuck in a dilemma thinking of what to do after it occurs.
One thing is certain, seeking medical attention after the accident! Otherwise, here is what to do after a car accident in New York.
1. Remain at the scene while seeking the attention of the police
According to the New York State vehicle and traffic law (VAT or VTL) sections 600 and 601, respectively. Anyone involved in a car accident is required to remain at the scene of the incident while seeking the attention of the police. During this time, you shouldn’t move vehicles involved. However, you can seek safety if the incident requires it.
Also, the law requires you to exchange your information with the other people involved in the accident.
2. Exchange your information with other victims involved
In the likely event of a car accident, the law requires you to exchange your information with other drivers involved. That includes names, addresses, insurance company information( Name and identification number inclusive). While doing this, request to see the license, registration, and insurance of the other driver involved.
3. Avoid making statements on the scene
Often, car accident victims move to make statements on the scene. While this may most times result in heated arguments, you should avoid this at all costs. You never know what's going to put you in a mess.
4. Witnesses may come in handy
Whenever possible, try to obtain contact as well as information of witnesses around the scene of incidence. You can ask for the name, address, and contact information should a need for a witness arrive later on.
5. Seek medical attention
Getting involved in a car accident can be devastating, with results ranging from less severe to chronic musculoskeletal system pains and physical injuries. In this event, you should seek medical attention immediately after exiting the scene, depending on the severity of the injury sustained.
Also, on some occasions, car accident victims may not sustain physical injures or feel pain.
However, you should seek medical attention irrespective of the situation faced with, as most accident injuries or pains do not hit the spotlight until after a while.
6. Call your insurance company.
An insurance company can refuse to cover damage claims in situations where you don't call them right after the incident. Always call your insurance company immediately after being involved in a car accident as it helps with your claim. That way, you get to be served the full benefit of your insurance!
Car accidents are inevitable; you never know when the next driver goes beyond the speed limit. Knowing what to do in the event of a car accident will go a long way in making sure you go through this experience without trouble.
However, if you feel the need for an expert attorney with a wealth of experience in handling vehicle-related accident cases, feel free to give us a call 718-273-7900 at any time or fill out our contact form below.
Motorcycle accident case settled for $1,140,000.00
A lawsuit stemming from a motorcycle accident brought on behalf of a Staten Island
Resident has been settled for the total sum of $1,140,000.00.
The Defendant, Pietro Vitale, claimed that Vincent Bruno, who was riding a
motorcycle at the time, was proceeding along Amboy Road at an unsafe speed. Mr.
Vitale made a left-hand turn from Amboy Road onto Kingdom Avenue and he alleged
that Mr. Bruno’s motorcycle came from out of nowhere and came into contact with
the passenger side of his vehicle. Mr. Bruno was thrown from the motorcycle and
sustained numerous serious personal injuries, including multiple lacerations to his
face which resulted in disfiguring scars.
The matter was on the trial calendar in the Supreme Court, Richmond County with
Justice Judith N. McMahon. On February 26, 2019, the attorneys for the parties
appeared in Court and the matter was settled for $1,140,000.00.
As a society, we rely on our legal system to enforce rules and regulations that keep us safe on the roads. Despite the existence of traffic laws and regulations, bad driving continues to be a significant problem that results in tragic consequences. From speeding and reckless driving to driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, bad driving can lead to serious injuries, fatalities, and significant financial and legal consequences
When we define bad driving, we are talking about people who create property damage and injure people with their driving on a fairly regularly basis. If your insurance premiums are roughly the same as your home mortgage payments, then you are a bad driver. But we are not saying it this way to make bad driving sound cute. There are tragic consequences to bad driving, and every motorist should do their best to identify and eliminate their own bad driving.
The Financial Consequences
The financial consequences of bad driving accumulate and can eventually drive you to ruin. When you think about how much you rely on being able to drive to take care of your daily business, you can get a better idea as to how crippling it can be when driving becomes too expensive. Most insurance carriers will not insure someone who has a series of small accidents or tickets on their record. That is when you have to start looking at insurance companies that charge hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars a month just to keep your car on the road.
Some people take on extremely high deductibles to keep their rising insurance rates down, but that becomes a problem when you get into yet another accident. As more and more of the financial responsibility for repairing your vehicle falls on your shoulders, you hopefully start to appreciate the benefits of safe driving.
The Personal Toll
Bad drivers have bad driving habits, and those bad driving habits put other drivers and pedestrians in jeopardy. Your insurance might cover the medical expenses for a pedestrian you hit, but that pedestrian's life will never be the same. The injuries you sustain in car accidents can sometimes culminate into psychological issues that make driving almost impossible. If you continue down a path of bad driving, you are eventually going to start feeling the personal toll bad driving takes.
The Impact On Your Life
A good way for bad drivers to take that first step towards better driving is to write down a list of everything they need their license and their car for each and every day. That list may include going to work, taking the kids to school, bringing the kids home, and going grocery shopping. What people inevitably forget are activities like going to the doctor, visiting relatives, going out for the evening, taking the kids to visit friends, and other activities that are impossible without their car.
It is one thing to think that you could live your life with just public transportation, but it is another to think that public transportation would support your lifestyle. Many suburb areas have limited public transportation and calling an Uber or a cab to go everywhere you want to go will eat up your paycheck in a couple of trips. Bad driving can not only take away your freedom, it can take away your ability to live the life you have worked so hard to create.
If you are a bad driver, it is time to look in the mirror and admit your problem. You need to go start taking defensive driving courses, and maybe even consider getting someone to take you to places where driving can be a little tricky. You need to do everything you can to improve on your bad driving because the long-term consequences of being a bad driver can completely ruin your life.
What to Do When Your Injured in A Hit - and - Run Accident in New York
A hit-and-run accident in New York State is a very serious incident and crime. It is a serious incident because if someone is injured, then it becomes necessary to try and determine who will pay for the victim's medical cost. It is a serious crime because people need to be held accountable for the damage they do and the injuries they cause. If you ever get injured in a hit-and-run accident, there are some steps you should follow to help with your claim.
Stay In Place
Aside from getting out of the way of traffic, you should remain at the scene of the accident. If you are seriously injured, then you should call 911 emergency services and get help. The responding emergency medical technicians will include the location of the accident in their report.
Call Emergency Personnel
As we mentioned, you should call for emergency medical treatment once you are out of the way of moving traffic. You should also call the police to ask them to generate a report. Since you are injured, you might have to be taken from the scene before the police arrive. If that is the case, then give the 911 dispatcher a quick description of the vehicle that hit you.
Once you have been treated and can move around freely, you should contact the police to get a copy of the police report. That police report will have witness accounts of the accident that you can use in your claim.
While On The Scene
As you wait for the police and medical personnel to show up, start taking pictures of the accident scene and reaching out to witnesses. If you are too injured to move, then do not attempt to approach anyone. It is entirely possible that witnesses will come to you with information. You should attempt to gather that information for use later in your claim. You should look for information such as the make of the vehicle, the color, the license plate number, a description of the driver, and any other details witnesses can provide.
Contact An Attorney
Once a police report has been filed about your hit-and-run accident, the police will start an investigation. You would be surprised how many of these types of incidents get solved in New York State. As you wait for the investigation to conclude, you should hire the services of an experienced personal injury attorney.
Your attorney will know exactly what to do if the offending driver is caught, and if the investigation turns up no drivers. In either case, you will want to make sure your medical expenses and lost wages are covered from your accident.
A hit-and-run accident can get a driver arrested and charged with a variety of offenses. Along with criminal charges, you will want to make sure that your injury claim for the damage you sustained from this inconsiderate and reckless driver is paid for in full.
Using Uber or Lyft? Do you know who pays for the riders injuries in car accidents?
[et_pb_section admin_label="section"] [et_pb_row admin_label="row"] [et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text"] When the Uber and Lyft ride sharing services got started, they ran into trouble with taxi services and insurance companies. The taxi services saw these ride sharing companies as serious competition and, as it has turned out, the ride sharing apps are giving the taxi companies plenty of headaches. The insurance companies were upset because the ride sharing apps completely ignored how auto insurance works and put a lot of people in harm's way. The moment you take on a passenger as a ride sharing app driver, your personal auto insurance stopped working and you would be personally responsible for any damages or medical expenses. Has that changed over the years, or remained the same?
Personal Versus Commercial Auto Insurance
Auto insurance laws and products have changed a lot since the ride sharing apps came into existence, but those changes are only helpful if you understand them. If all you have on your vehicle is personal auto insurance and you get into an accident while driving for a ride sharing app, then none of your medical expenses or damages will be covered. You will also be informed that any damage you did to other people's property will also be your personal financial responsibility. Some insurance carriers have developed a product called Ride Sharing Auto Insurance that will cover you in certain situations. You will need to discuss this product with your insurance agent to find out if it is right for you. In all situations, carrying commercial auto insurance along with your personal insurance will cover your personal damages and injuries while working for a ride-sharing app.
What About The Passengers?
In any state where the ride sharing apps operate, they are required to carry a $1 million coverage guarantee for your passengers. This means that if you do get into an accident, the insurance coverage offered by the ride sharing app is supposed to cover all of your passenger's injuries. The reason that we say that the app coverage is "supposed to" cover passenger injuries is that sometimes the app insurance companies deny coverage for a variety of reasons. While more states are starting to crack down on ride sharing apps denying claims from passengers, it can still happen that your passenger might not have their medical expenses and lost wages covered by the ride sharing app coverage. If that happens, you can expect your passenger to personally sue you for those expenses and your auto insurance would not cover any of your legal costs. Before you decide to drive for the ride sharing apps Lyft or Uber, you have to become familiar with the insurance situation. The ride sharing apps rely on their drivers to get the right kind of insurance to cover any driver medical expenses or damages, while the ride sharing apps offer extensive coverage for passengers. It is important to understand your insurance needs as a ride sharing driver before you take on your first passenger. [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column] [/et_pb_row] [/et_pb_section]
Safe Driving Tips For Fall
The fall brings about sunny mornings, cold weather, plenty of rain, and falling leaves. All of these elements combine together to create a beautiful and relaxing environment, but they can also create treacherous driving conditions. As fall weather gets closer, it is important for drivers to be on the look-out for weather-enhanced driving conditions that can make driving potentially dangerous.
Problems Caused By The Sun
The sun rises at such a unique angle during the fall that it can cause a tremendous glare on the roads in the mornings that can be dangerous. If the roads are wet with frost or rain then the glare is going to be even worse. Drivers who have to be on the roads during the early morning hours should be aware of this unique glare to the sun and prepare for it with sunglasses that offer protection on all sides of the eyes.
Be Careful Of Leaves
While leaves are not nearly as dangerous to drivers as snow, wet leaves can be a driving hazard that could lead to a serious accident. In the mornings, leaves lying on the road in the morning frost can be extremely slippery. In general, wet leaves when piled together onto a road can also present a driving hazard. You should drive on leaves, wet or seemingly dry, as you would ice to make sure you are always safe.
Drivers know to watch for falling branches in the winter because of the added weight of ice and snow on dead branches, but the fall also brings branch hazards as well. The fall and spring are two times of the year where the winds can reach exceedingly high speeds, but fall can present extra dangers because branches are shedding their leaves for the winter and are more susceptible to falling than in the spring. As you drive around in wind storms during the fall, be very careful of falling branches. You should also look for falling branches in the road to avoid damaging your car.
Watch For School Kids
Drivers should always watch for pedestrians when driving, but during the fall there is the added hazard of school kids running in and out of the roads. During the winter there are natural barriers such as snow piles that prevent kids from darting in and out of the roads, but those piles do not exist in the fall which means that kids will be running in and out of the street and causing plenty of headaches for drivers.
The fall brings beautiful colors and a break from the oppressive heat and humidity of the summer. But fall also brings driving hazards that can make the roads especially dangerous. Proactive drivers should be on the look out for fall-related driving hazards and doing everything they can to prevent accidents with other vehicles and pedestrians.
Road Traffic Accidents- Most Common Causes
The best way to avoid a is to be aware of how the majority of accidents happen. In many cases, it is a matter of watching out for other drivers more than making sure that you are driving. A good understanding of defensive driving and being aware of the most common causes of traffic accidents can keep you safe on the roads.
Texting while driving and talking on the phone while driving are the two most common forms of distracted driving, but they are not the only forms. Playing the radio too loud, reading, eating, and trying to carry on conversations with people in the car are also deadly forms of distracted driving. If you see a distracted driver, do your best to stay as far away from that driver as possible.
Driving While Impaired
Whether it is driving while intoxicated or driving while under the influence, driving while impaired is a big reason there are so many accidents on the road. While it is easy to point the finger and people who drink alcohol, we often forget about the people who take a new prescription medication for the first time and then go driving. You should always take a new prescription at a time when you can remain in your home and judge its effects. Driving while impaired kills many people every year, and it is a common cause of traffic accidents.
It is easy for dangerous drivers to blame bad weather for their mishaps, but any prepared and cautious driver can avoid accidents when driving in bad weather. The unfortunate thing is that, in many instances, it is a cautious driver who is struck by a careless driver during bad weather. If the weather is bad, either stay home or give yourself more time to get where you are going. Never ignore the weather and always make sure you car is properly maintained to handle bad weather roads.
Not Knowing The Rules Of The Road
If you and another driver approach an intersection at the same time and there is no stop light, who goes first? If a pedestrian starts crossing the road when you have a green light, is the pedestrian wrong? Once people pass the written part of their driving test, the often forget 95 percent of the test material. Many road traffic accidents are the result of one person knowing the rules of the road and the other person not being familiar with the rules. If everyone stayed sharp on the rules of the road, then many accidents could be prevented.
As you head out on the open roads, it helps to understand why so many accidents happen. People like to focus on the statistics for fatalities, but the number of traffic accidents that put people in the hospital each year is staggering. By understanding the common causes for road accidents, you can be part of the solution rather than the problem.
Who Covers The Driver's Injuries In An Uber Or Lyft Accident?
The ride-sharing apps Uber and Lyft are still business ideas in progress as both are trying to figure out how to address the insurance issue. When a person with a private auto insurance policy picks up a rider from one of the apps, the driver's private insurance instantly becomes void. The reason is that private auto insurance is not designed to cover commercial vehicles, and your vehicle becomes a commercial vehicle when you pick up a ride-sharing fare. So what happens when there is an accident?
State Laws Are Changing
For years, Uber had a $1 million commercial insurance policy in effect that covered the passengers of ride-sharing companies. The problem was that Uber often made it difficult for passengers to use that insurance for various reasons. Recently, the state of New Jersey has made it mandatory that Uber and Lyft offer $1.5 million per incident commercial insurance coverage for all ride-sharing passengers. Many other states have similar laws in place that make it much easier for passengers to have their medical bills covered if they are ever in a ride-sharing accident.
What About Drivers?
When an Uber or Lyft driver has an accident, the driver has to worry about property damage expenses of their own and any other party they hit, as well as their medical expenses and the medical costs for pedestrians or people in other vehicles. If the driver only has a standard private auto insurance policy, then most insurance companies will deny coverage in the event of a ride-sharing accident. The result is that the driver would be financially responsible for all of the costs insurance would normally cover, which could be tens of thousands of dollars.
Are There Options?
Ride-sharing drivers have two options they can exercise to protect themselves in the event of a ride-sharing accident. Some insurance companies have started to offer ride-sharing insurance that will cover you in the course of your normal daily driving and if you get into a ride-sharing accident.
The driver's other option is to get a commercial grade driver's license (like a taxi driver would have) and then get commercial auto insurance. The private policy would be in effect when the driver is using their car for personal reasons, and the commercial policy would kick in when the driver decides to make themselves available on the ride-sharing app.
When you make money using a ride-sharing app and you do not attend to your insurance needs, then you are taking a huge risk. If you got into just one accident while ride-sharing and you do not have the proper insurance, then you could be looking at bankruptcy and the possibility of not ever having insurance again.
In most states, the passengers in a ride-sharing scenario are covered by a more than adequate insurance policy that can attend to all of their needs. But neither of the big ride-sharing apps have offered any insurance help to drivers. Since drivers are independent contractors, it is unlikely that the ride-sharing apps will offer any insurance help without being provoked by state laws. That means that ride-sharing drivers need to be smart and have the right insurance in place before they start taking ride-sharing fares.