How do I sue for pain and suffering in a No Fault accident that happened in NY?

Asked about 1 year ago - Vista, CA

My fiancée and I were in NY when we got in a rear end three car accident. We were the first car to get hit and no fault was put on us. My Fiancee was 7 months pregnant and spent 14 hrs in the hospital for contraction and got seen for her neck and back. Because she was pregnant they couldn't do any xrays or mri. We have already filed a claim with the insurance company. We are so lost because NY is a no fault state and we have no idea what that entails. My fiancée and I are both now listed as injured in this accident. We are both military veterans and are unsure if we can claim injuries sustained in the line of duty as aggravated by the accident. Need help almost going on a yr since the accident happened. Can see be excused for not have certain things done because of pregnancy at the time?

Attorney answers (10)

  1. Alan Ray Barnes

    Contributor Level 19

    12

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Sounds like you need to talk to a New York personal injury lawyer. The "Find a Lawyer" tool on this site may be helpful.

  2. David Lee Fiol

    Contributor Level 17

    12

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I believe you have three years to file a claim in NY, but don't bet on that - contact a lawyer in the area in which you were hurt immediately. You will probably have to sue where the defendants live.

  3. Andrew Lawrence Weitz

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    13

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I'm sorry you were in this accident, and it hope that the baby and your wife are well. I'm a New York PI Lawyer. You have three years to file suit. As you found out, there is a no fault component to claims in New York, and it is apparent that you complied with the thirty day filing requirement for no fault benefits. That will NOT cover past and future pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and past and future lost earnings beyond a nominal amount. Your no fault benefits will cover up to $50,000 of what is termed "basic economic loss," which largely consists of medical expenses.

    Because we are a no fault state, before one may recover beyond no fault benefits, one must have suffered "serious injury" as defined by Insurance Law section 5102(d) and amplified, clarified and categorized by case law. There is a nuance to making the no fault threshold where one does not "match" one of the categories, such as having a fracture.

    To answer your other question, yes, you can certainly claim activation of an underlying condition, or exacerbation of a preexisting condition. Of course, there has to be competent medical proof of such an exacerbation. Most doctors who are willing to testify are intimately familiar with the requirements of the threshold, and your attorney must be as well.

    You may contact a NY PI/Auto accident lawyer here, through Avvo. Again, I hope your wife and baby are doing well.

    We are serious lawyers for the seriously injured. I am a co-author of WEITZ ON AUTOMOBILE LITIGATION: THE NO... more
  4. Christopher John Gansen

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    11

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Call an NY lawyer based in the city where the accident took place.

  5. Francis M Smith

    Pro

    Contributor Level 14

    11

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Get to a good personal injury lawyer, who will give you a free consultation and no fee unless she/he recovers money for you. A good attorney will be able to talk to colleagues in NY or know how the law there will effect your claim. Don't worry about the delay in your wife's treatment; everyone understands that some tests have to await delivery. Get advised right away since an attorney will not want to deal with a last minute suit right before the statute of limitation runs. Good luck!

    Every situation is different, and good legal advice cannot be given based on a short question without an... more
  6. David Ian Schoen

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    10

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Immediately consult with an experienced NY personal injury attorney who can explain everything in detail and represent your interests. Do not have any further communication with the insurance company.

  7. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    9

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Not sure if you meet "serious injury" threshold, so have a personal injury lawyer investigate

  8. Gerald R Stahl

    Pro

    Contributor Level 16

    8

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Mr. Weitz laid out the answer to this question well. Follow his advice and contact a New York auto accident lawyer. Good Luck!

  9. Scott J. Corwin

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I would strongly recommend hiring an experienced car accident attorney in the location where the accident took place to get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Best of luck.

  10. Michael R Crosner

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Consult a local N.Y. personal injury attorney - most will offer a free consultation. You can locate a local attorney right here on avvo by using the tab "Find A Lawyer" Good luck

    This is not intended to be legal advise or as legal representation. I am a California personal injury attorney .... more

Related Topics

Pain and suffering for personal injury

Pain and suffering refers to physical and mental trauma caused by an injury, and is often a significant component of non-economic damages.

Personal injury

If you suffer a personal injury as the result of the actions or negligence of another, you may seek financial compensation for physical or emotional damages.

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