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Auto, Truck, and Motorcycle Accidents
When driving on a public roadway, we are expected to exercise due care and abide by the traffic laws that are in place to ensure public safety. Sadly, auto, truck, and motorcycle accidents happen every day because not everyone obeys the law.
Many of the vehicular cases handled by Rutberg Breslow Personal Injury Law involve catastrophic injuries or death. The firm also represents many people with lesser, but still significant, injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents. Cases of serious injury and cases involving one or more deaths require legal representation with the level of excellence and experience our firm provides. But cases involving lesser injuries present special challenges.
Contrary to what the public sometimes hears, the civil justice system contains many safeguards and rules to prevent the recovery of money by people with very minor injuries. In the state of New York, one of the most important protections applies to many vehicular collisions and is contained in the Insurance Law and applies to accidents involving motor vehicles. It is commonly called the “Threshold” statute because a case gets dismissed if the injuries don’t pass the “threshold.”
The “Threshold” law says that for a claimant to have the right to be compensated for bodily injuries, there must be proof not only that the other driver caused the accident, but also that the claimant sustained a “serious injury” as defined by the “Threshold” statute. “Serious injury” includes the following:
- Significant disfigurement
- Bone fracture
- Loss of a fetus
- Permanent loss of use of a body organ, member, function or system
- Permanent consequential limitation of use of a body organ or member
- Significant limitation of use of a body function or system
- Any medically determined injury that causes the victim to be incapacitated for 90 of the 180 days following the accident
Those terms can be confusing and all have been defined in a large and complex body of case law. Knowing whether or not your case “meets the threshold” and telling you why or why not, is an important legal service. It increases your chances of winning if you have a case, because proving you meet the “threshold” is required. It avoids you wasting time with a case you will lose. And on the community level, it also protects the court system from becoming overloaded with minor claims.
Many times limits apply to cases involving motor vehicle accidents. For example, evidence can sometimes disappear soon after the collision; witness memories fade; in some cases legal notice of your claim may be required. For that reason, it’s often critical that you contact us as soon as possible after the accident.
At Rutberg Breslow Personal Injury Law we work hard to protect your rights if you are injured or a loved one is lost in a motor vehicle accident. We are highly experienced in motor vehicle accident cases and will help you receive proper compensation. We handle cases all over the state of New York. Contact us for a free consultation.