Buffalo Car Accident Attorneys
Standing Up for Your Legal Rights After a Car Crash
According to the New York State Department of Health, traffic injuries caused by motor vehicle accidents are a serious public health problem in Erie County. In the year 2014 for instance, traffic accidents on Erie County's roadways resulted in $25.9 million in hospitalization and emergency room costs. At the time, it was estimated that about four people are killed every month and hundreds more are injured.
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a car crash in the Buffalo area, you deserve quick and effective legal representation to help you secure fair compensation. At Faraci Lange, LLP, our team of dedicated and experienced Buffalo car accident lawyers stand ready to help you fight for the compensation you need to cover your accident-related costs and make the recovery you deserve.
On This Page:
- Common Causes of Car Accidents
- Common Car Accident Injuries
- Who Can Be Held Liable for New York Car Accidents?
- How Much Should I Settle For After a Car Accident?
- How Long Does the Insurance Company Have to Settle a Claim?
- How Long Do You Have to File a Car Accident Lawsuit?
- How Long Does a Car Accident Lawsuit Take?
- Why Hire a Lawyer?
When it comes to car accident claims, one or more people must have been at fault for the incident. This means that car accident claims can almost always be traced to human error as the root cause.
Some of the most common causes of car accidents we see here in Buffalo include:
- Driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol
- Texting, daydreaming, and otherwise being distracted while driving
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
- Reckless driving, such as speeding, tailgating, driving on the shoulder of the road, etc.
- Failing to follow traffic laws and signage
- Poor road design and/or lack of road maintenance
- Vehicle malfunctions and defects
Injuries commonly sustained in car crashes include:
- Broken bones
- Bruises, cuts, and scrapes
- Internal bleeding and other trauma
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) such as concussions
- Back, neck, spine, and spinal cord injuries
- Knee and wrist injuries
- Whiplash injuries
- Burn injuries
After a car crash, it is imperative that you seek medical treatment right away regardless of how mild your injuries may appear. Many internal injuries—including minor to severe brain damage—can go undetected for a significant amount of time without a doctor’s help. If you leave such injuries untreated until they start you cause you pain or discomfort, you may find that you require more extensive medical treatment to recover or even that you have sustained irreversible damage.
New York is a “no fault” car insurance state, which means that you must file an auto insurance claim under your own personal injury protection (PIP) coverage regardless of who caused the crash. Only under circumstances involving “serious injury” (such as significant disfigurements or disabilities) can you file and pursue a claim against the driver who caused your car accident.
Compensation that you should be eligible to receive includes coverage for your accident-related:
- Medical costs, such as hospitalization, surgeries, and medications
- Lost wages from time taken off work
- Property damage
- Ongoing medical care, such as counseling and rehabilitation
- Pain and suffering
In very rare cases, you may be able to seek punitive damages as well. For more specific information based on the facts of your unique situation, contact an attorney to discuss your case.
We can't tell you exactly how much your case may be worth without first knowing the details of your accident. This is because each claim is unique and your settlement will vary depending on the severity of your injuries and the actions of the other driver that led to your accident. In general however, it's estimated that the average settlement amount for car accident injury claims in the U.S. is around $20,000. For victims who have suffered more catastrophic injuries (brain, spinal cord, etc.), you can expect a significantly larger settlement. Once again, the best way to determine whether or not you are being offered a fair settlement is to speak with our team of car accident lawyers in a free initial consultation.
In New York state insurance companies must settle a claim within 35 days of the claim being filed. If your claim is approved, they should offer you a settlement at the end of those 35 days, at which point you will have the opportunity to either accept or reject the settlement offer. If you accept the settlement you will not be able to pursue legal action against the insurance company for that claim. If you choose to reject the settlement, you will need to contact a lawyer and take the insurance company to court if you want to pursue further compensation.
Plaintiffs must file their car accident claim with the courts no later than three years from the date of the crash that led to their injuries. After this deadline (or “statute of limitations”) has passed, you will not be able to file a claim.
In the event of wrongful death, the surviving family member(s) of the deceased has two years from the date of their loved one’s passing to file a claim.
Please note that the earlier you initiate your car accident claim, the more likely you and your attorney will be able to collect relevant evidence while it is fresh which will make proving your claim much easier.
There is no set timeframe for how long a car accident lawsuit takes to resolve. Simple cases, where the insurance company is willing to settle outside of court without much argument, can be resolved in as few as 6 months. More complex cases with more serious injuries can take years to resolve because your attorney will most likely want to wait until you reach maximum medical improvements before bringing your case to court. Additionally, if the insurance company refuses to cooperate or offer a fair settlement, this means you will have to argue your case in court, which can take some time.
An experienced car accident lawyer such as those at Faraci Lange, LLP understands the ins and outs of New York car accident laws, related legal procedures, and the auto insurance industry. Having a lawyer on your side can also greatly improve your chances of receiving the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to. Plus, letting someone else handle your legal claim allows you to focus on more important things, such as your recovery. If you have been wrongfully injured and aren’t sure what to do next, our car accident attorneys in Buffalo are here for you.
To learn more about your legal options and how we can help, contact us now for your free consultation.
“Every person we encountered at Faraci Lange was supportive and worked diligently to settle our case with the very best results possible.”- Former Client
“I can’t thank them enough for their hard work and diligence in resolving my case favorably.”- Phil N.
“I would most definitely recommend this firm to anyone in need of a top personal injury lawyer.”- Michael M.
“A tragedy is difficult, but with such wonderful, caring people guiding us, the horrible time in our lives was made a little easier to deal with.”- Lisa P.
“They were never too busy to speak with me and address my issues.”- Ronald W.