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Motor Vehicle Collision Lawyers Serving Residents of Long Island
If you have been hurt by the careless driving of a trucker or the wrongful conduct of a trucking company, you may need help getting your life back on track. A dedicated injury attorney at Duffy & Duffy can help accident victims on Long Island and beyond understand the legal procedures involved in filing insurance claims, investigating the cause of an accident, securing medical records, and, if necessary, filing a lawsuit against a party that caused the crash.
We welcome the opportunity to put our many years of experience to work for you and your family as you deal with the aftermath of a truck accident.
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Truck Accidents in New York
Tractor-trailers often can carry 80,000 pounds or more, and tragedy can happen when they collide with smaller, more vulnerable vehicles. Although there are many different scenarios in which accidents involving trucks can happen, some of the common causes include:
- Speeding or other traffic violations;
- Improper loading of cargo;
- Driver distractions, such as cellphone use or text messaging;
- The use of prescription or illegal drugs; or
- Driver fatigue due to failure to comply with federally mandated rest periods.
Holding a Negligent Driver or Company Accountable for Your Injuries
Regardless of the cause of an accident, a victim generally must make out a case of negligence against the party from which he or she seeks to recover compensation. This is a four-step process that begins with a showing that the defendant owed a duty of care to the injured person.
Drivers owe everyone else on the road a basic duty of care that consists of acting at least as carefully as a reasonable person would act in a similar situation. The next step involves proving that the defendant, whether a driver, a trucking company, or both, breached the standard of care by failing to take the appropriate precautions.
Assuming that the first two requirements can be met, the remaining steps consist of proving that the accident directly resulted from the breach and that the claimant suffered actual damages. In truck crash cases, damages can range from lost wages, medical expenses, and property damage to the pain and suffering caused by the accident.
A frequently important factor in a negligence case is the statute of limitations, which is the period of time that a state allows an injured individual to file a lawsuit against the person or business that caused the accident in which he or she was hurt.
If the accident happened in New York, the statute of limitations is generally three years. (It is important to note, however, that the period for filing a wrongful death lawsuit is only two years, so if the accident involved a fatality, the time for filing is shorter.) Also, if the defendant is a municipality (such as a snow plow causing injury) the statute can be as little as 90 days.
In most cases, a claimant’s failure to file a claim within the time allowed under the statute of limitations will bar that person from recovering any compensation. In a few limited situations, such as when the injured individual is a child or operating under some type of legal disability, there may be a possibility of “tolling” (or extending) the statute of limitations. Otherwise, the failure to timely file suit means no recovery, regardless of the severity of the claimant’s injuries.
Discuss Your Truck Accident Claim with a Long Island Attorney
If you have been involved in a truck accident on Long Island or the nearby area, whether caused by driver fatigue or another issue, the lawyers at Duffy & Duffy are here to assist you.
We offer a free initial consultation, during which we will review the facts of your case. Call us at (516) 394-4200 or use our online contact form to set up an appointment with one of our experienced litigators. We have represented accident victims from Nassau and Suffolk Counties, as well as the Bronx and Queens, among other communities.
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