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The auto accidents laws of the State of New York are complex. These laws affect not only whether or not a person has the right to make a claim, but also their rights regarding their medical treatment. For this reason, an injured auto accident victim should seek legal counsel as early as possible. If you retain counsel, he or she will normally take the following steps; however, if you have not hired a lawyer, you need to know and take these steps:
Auto Accident Victims
1. Make sure that the police report is accurate and has your accurate version of the auto accident details.
2. Under New York automobile insurance law, your medical bills will be paid by auto insurance carrier (No-Fault Insurance) of the car that you were in. As a result, you need to put them on notice immediately in order to complete an application for No-Fault Benefits (NF-2) within certain time limit (under normal circumstances within 30 days).
3. You need to take or have someone take pictures of the external and internal property damage to your automobile and the other cars or trucks involved.
4. You need to put your own automobile insurance carrier on notice for potential uninsured of underinsured motorist claims.
5. If you were involved in a hit-and-run automobile accident, there are crucial steps that you must take immediately to protect your rights under the law and your automobile insurance policy.
6. If the adverse vehicle or drive is associated with a public entity, such as a city, county, or the State of New York, you need to put them on notice by filling special forms (Notice of Claim) within 90 days of the accident date.
7. If the adverse vehice was a commercial automobile, bus, or a truck, you need to make sure certain evidence is preserved immediately.
8. The law recognizes that many people have a history of prior accidents or medical conditions made worse by an auto accident. Howver, it will be your responsibility to make sure that you tell your treating doctors about these accidents or conditions and ensure that your old medical records are available for comparison, if necessary.
9. You need to know that generally, there is a 3 year statute of limitations to bring a law suit for your personal injuries in the State of New York. If an auto accident law suit is not properly filed, you will be forever barred from making a claim. A child that was injured has until their 21st birthday to file a lawsuit for auto accident injuries that happened anytime before age 18.
10. You need to be honest in all of your dealings with your medical providers, insurance companies, and court proceedings. Many people, unaware of the pitfalls within our system, can unknowingly commit insurance fraud.
For the reason alone, it is best to hire an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
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For more information on auto accidents, please consult JEFFREY KIM, P.C. today.