Shel, fell, woke up, plaster - call a lawyer right away!
How to achieve compensation if you are injured? What to do if, for example, you slipped on the sidewalk and broke your leg, a car ran over you, a dog bit you, or you were shocked in a rented apartment. Who should be responsible for this and how realistic is compensation? About all the nuances - in our material.
There is a long-standing story among New Yorkers. Several years ago, a new cafe opened in the Sheepsheadbay area (mostly people from the former USSR live there). Since the owner was Russian, he called him dashing - "Damn it." To match the name, the interior contained photos and accessories on the theme of the movie "The Diamond Arm". Could the owners have known that the script before entering their establishment will develop almost like in a motion picture. There was a hatch on the asphalt outside the cafe that led to the basement. One early morning, someone inadvertently left it open. At that time a lawyer was walking by - to the legal office next door. He did not see the hatch, thundered down and broke his leg. According to the legend - as a result, he sued the cafe for such an amount that they had to close, and the locals discussed it for a long time - the name “with devilry” is to blame for everything. In fact, the lawyer really sued the institution and received compensation, but the insurance covered everything. And the cafe closed due to poor management. So this is rather an example of the fact that it is necessary to go to court, even on one leg.
First of all - a photo for memory
Attorney Tanya Gendelman has been involved in non-frequent cases in New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts for more than 20 years. Behind her back are about 7 thousands of customers. Her main advice is if an accident happened to you, but you are sane and sober, the first thing to do is to take a picture of yourself and everything around you. If, for example, a hand or a leg is broken, a photo of the scene of the incident and the limb itself are necessary for successful management of the case.
“Very often a person is lost when a car knocks him down, for example. It is clear that it hurts him, he can not think about anything at this moment. But you need to accumulate all the forces, take all the pictures, take the driver's data, be sure to call the ambulance and the police. Ideally, call a lawyer right away. If necessary - we go straight to the place and help our clients arrange everything correctly. Because if this is not done immediately, then everything will be much more complicated, ”says the lawyer. - We recently had a case. A woman was hit by a car, the driver went out and took her home, gave her her alleged phone. At first she did not understand how serious her injury was, and then it turned out that she had a fracture. But the phone that the driver gave her no longer answered, and she did not have any information about him, except this one. In such a situation, virtually nothing can be done. ”
So, your first three actions in any injury:
- Photos of everything around
- Witness information
- Call the ambulance and the police
- Call a lawyer
Whether the case will burn out is not for you to decide.
The lawyer advises not to make the decision whether the case is worth the candle. Often, clients dismiss, in their opinion, failed cases, but in fact, if you connect an intelligent lawyer, you could win them. For example, you slipped into the subway and sprained your leg. “What is the point of suing the city!” - you will think - and leave everything as it is, meekly paying bills for treatment. Meanwhile, if the reason for the fall is not just in your carelessness - you can always sue.
“If there is real fault, for example, a broken step, or a leak and a puddle on the floor - that is, something that the employees had to eliminate - then you can safely sue. But you have to do everything quickly, because if you have undertaken to sue municipal structures, you need to collect the case and submit an application within 90 days (for the state of New York), ”says Tanya Gendelman.
One of her clients was thus able to get 1 a million dollars in compensation. A New York City school teacher slipped on a wet floor in a school cafeteria. Fell unsuccessfully - injured her knee and received hernia of the cervical and lumbar spine. Despite the fact that lawyers from the city argued that the plaintiff herself was to blame - the lawyer managed to convince the jury of the opposite. The school’s plans helped (it was necessary to prove that the woman had no other way except through the wet canteen), and evidence from other teachers that warning signs were not placed on the freshly washed floor, and medical certificates.
It’s not worth it - I’ll splurge on a lawyer!
Very often, having been injured, people are afraid to seek protection from lawyers - they say, they will not win, and they will spend money on the courts. Although in reality, lawyers often work for a percentage and incur all associated costs.
“That is why we always say - you better call, consult, it will cost you nothing. And if we take on a case, there is a high probability that we will win it, there is no point in taking on obviously failed cases, ”assures Tanya Gendelman.
True, it is worth preparing for a long battle - sometimes such cases can be considered for several years. It happened to a worker who was injured in an elevator as early as 2007. 23-year-old guy lifted furniture in an elevator in one of Midtown Manhattan's skyscrapers. Suddenly, the elevator shook the passenger badly, rode - shook again, and finally got stuck. The shakes were so strong that the man fell twice, and then waited for 3 for an hour, until he was released. In the end, he suffered injuries to the shoulder, back and neck. The litigation lasted more than one year, but the lawyer still managed to prove the cause of the elevator malfunction and sue about 6 millions from the defendants, despite the fact that they initially offered to settle the case for just 100 000 dollars.
“And how much will I get?”
In spite of the fact that often the jury makes verdicts on the payment of millions of dollars - in fact, it is still worth being realistic. In 99% of cases, you are not suing the specific respondent, but with its insurance company, and you can receive exactly as much as is written in the insurance contract.
“The numbers are quite unpredictable. You can sue a million, but take only 25 thousand, or 100 thousand, there is no clear formula. It all depends on the insurance coverage, ”says Tanya Gendelman.
According to her, for example, for a car accident in New York, the minimum insurance coverage that a person should have - 25 thousand per victim, 50 - for two or more. It is for such amounts are usually insured cars. In case of injuries sustained in the territory of various houses and enterprises, one can count on more serious compensation.
“It all depends on insurance coverage. When clients come to me and ask how much they will receive, I can only assume - because we must first look at who is to blame, what damage and what amount of insurance coverage, ”says the lawyer.
Of course, you can insist on the payment of the full amount that was awarded to the jury, but then the compensation can be extended for many years. After all, the insurance company will not transfer money to the victim until he agrees to close the case. Therefore, a person usually has a choice: to get tens of thousands of dollars at once, or to fight for millions - but in installments.
“You simply won't get the amount from the insurance until you completely close the case. If the defendant does not have the missing money - they can be charged from him for tens of years, for example, 10% of his salary - in practice you will never really see this money. Therefore, we usually explain to our clients that it makes sense to agree to what the insurance covers, ”says Tanya.
However, the money that the client can receive - most often very large sums. In any case, they certainly cover medical care and rehabilitation. Therefore, it is worth fighting for your rights unequivocally. And if you slipped, fell and woke up in a plaster, immediately after the first thought “damn it” - call a lawyer.
Contact a lawyer Tanya Gendelman can
by phones (888) 365-4315, (718) 368-0981,
on sites 1844Advokat.com, trabma.com,
or at 3033 Brighton 3 street, Brooklyn, New York, 11235
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