4 Car Accident Tips

Have you or a loved one been in an accident and have questions? Check out these 4 car accident tips and give our office a call.

1. Black Ice Car Accidents

4 Car Accident TipsOn occasion, we’ll get a call from a potential client who was involved in a car accident where they were the driver. One scenario is; they lost control of their vehicle on an icy roadway and spun out, struck a guard rail, and unfortunately sustained pretty serious injuries. In that circumstance, after an investigation of that particular section of roadway, we had made a determination, in our opinion, that that driver had been driving too fast for those conditions. We were unable to bring a claim for them. However, they were still fully entitled to the no-fault benefits under the insurance law, which does provide the wage benefit, the medical to cover your medical bills, and mileage reimbursement for a period of time.

2. Winter Weather Car Accidents

During this time of the year, we tend to get a lot of calls from potential clients where weather played a factor in the accident. They often ask, what involvement if any does the weather play in their case, and how will it affect a potential claim that they may need to bring for personal injury and pain and suffering. Weather is a factor in many accidents, whether it just be wet, slippery roadways, icy, snow, whether the visibility is decreased to zero because of heavy fog. What the law provides for those types of cases is an obligation for all drivers to act safely and drive appropriately in terms of the conditions that are in existence at that time. What that means is you are deemed to be obligated to drive according to whatever is presented out there with the weather.

One of the things that people are ticketed for (sometimes when it’s weather related) is called driving too fast for the conditions. Even though they may not have been speeding according to those street signs, you can’t go the posted speed limit if there’s extremely heavy snow or ice present. You have to control your vehicle, and you have an obligation to act safely and prevent accidents or injuries to others.

3. Unsure Whose Negligence Caused Injury

In some cases, the determination of who is at fault is easy, particularly in two-vehicle accidents, in cases in which someone may have run a red light, and in similar situations. The issue of who is at fault for an accident becomes more difficult in cases where there are multi-vehicle accidents. In our system, there can be multiple at-fault parties for an accident; anyone involved in an accident can be substantially at fault even if he or she barely contributed to the accident.

Premise liability cases and dog bite cases are dependent upon the facts. In a premise liability case, we would need to show either that the owner knew or should have known that there was a dangerous condition on the premises, regardless of whether the owner created such a condition. In a dog bite case, we would need to show that the dog had a vicious propensity. From there, we could show negligence and even strict liability.

4. Ridesharing Injury Liability

It’s become a hot topic the last few weeks, here in Buffalo, now that we have Uber and Lyft available to people looking for rides home or rides to an event. The important things to know about Uber or Lyft accidents is there are very specific regulations that are in place right now regarding the amounts of insurance coverages that these drivers must carry.

One of the things I would suggest at the accident scene is if you are not in the Uber or Lyft vehicle, you see if that other vehicle is operating as an Uber or Lyft car. These vehicles are special because they are getting dispatched, if you will, exclusively through an online digital app. If that is in fact the case, then the insurance coverages go up drastically; up to $75,000 if they are just responding to a call for transportation; up to actually $1.25 million if they’re actually in the process of carrying passengers.

These are things that should be discussed with your attorney at that first consultation. Any evidence or proof that you have – even taking a photo of either their phone or their tablet up on their dashboard; that’s often how they get these jobs. Sometimes it’s not apparent, but other times if you look a little bit closer it may be apparent. I also suggest to my clients to just ask if these people were in the actual task of providing transportation under either Uber or Lyft.

These 4 car accident tips brought to you by Attorney Richard Nicotra is a partner with Andrews, Bernstein, Maranto & Nicotra, PLLC and has achieved the highest rating of 10 on Avvo.

The Personal Injury Lawyers at Andrews, Bernstein, Maranto & Nicotra, PLLC fight for the rights of persons who are injured or disabled. We approach each case on an individual basis and personally assist each client with their unique needs. We are involved in every step of the legal process, and ensure that each case receives the time and effort necessary for success. 

The insurance companies are familiar with us, and the fact that our attorneys are willing to take all of our cases to a jury trial. Unlike other Buffalo auto accident attorneys, we will not accept a quick settlement just to move on to the next case. We will fight for every ounce of compensation that our clients deserve.

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