If you’ve been injured in an accident, whether a car or motorcycle accident, a slip and fall, or another accident, you may be entitled to compensation for damages incurred. Often, the damages include medical expenses, physical therapy expenses, loss of income from work, loss of future earning capacity, and, in some cases, pain and suffering. Especially when the injury was caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of another, you shouldn’t have to bear the weight of these expenses yourself.
To recover these expenses and hold the responsible party (an individual or company) accountable for their actions, you can start by calling a Manhattan personal injury lawyer to file a lawsuit. With the attorneys at Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier, P.C., we’ll work with you every step of the way, providing expert legal counsel and representation throughout the duration of your case. For a free consultation, call our NYC personal injury law office today at (212) 777-9400.
Statute of Limitations in New York
Following an accident, the first and most important matter is to receive the medical help you need to get better. However, there is a time limit to filing a personal injury lawsuit. In New York, the statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit is three years from the date of the injury.
However, if you’re filing a claim against the New York government, you have more stringent time limits. For example, you have 90 days to file a formal civil claim against a city in New York, and one year to file a lawsuit against a city (N.Y. Gen. Mun. Laws § 50-e).
First Steps in an NYC Personal Injury Lawsuit
As mentioned above, the first step after an injury is to look after your health and acquire the required medical help. If you have already recovered, some of the initial steps for filing a personal injury lawsuit in NYC should include:
- Contact an experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer
- Collect evidence that can point to who caused the accident
- Write down everything that happened after the accident, including medical bills, hospital visits, any lost work or wages, and so on
- Collect the names and contact information of any witnesses that may have observed the accident
Although this may seem like a lot to do, especially if you are still slightly injured or experiencing limited mobility, your personal injury attorney can be a valuable asset in gathering the necessary evidence to prove your claim.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in NYC
When preparing to file a personal injury lawsuit against another individual, business, or entity, then you need to be prepared for what could be a long process. Below we’ve included some of the common stages of the personal injury lawsuit as well as a brief overview of each step.
- Summons and complaint. Under New York law, a lawsuit begins by filing a “summons” and a “complaint.” In this stage, the plaintiff (the injured party) briefly drafts the complaint document and describes the allegations that the plaintiff needs to prove. Next, the lawsuit begins after the plaintiff pays the filing fee. The summons and complaint are delivered to the defendant, who must provide a written answer within 20 to 30 days, depending on the delivery of the summons and complaint.
- Discovery. As the most time-consuming part of the lawsuit, the Discovery stage is very important. This is the pre-litigation stage where both sides seek facts in the cases to prove their allegations in a more robust manner.
- Request for judicial intervention. After paying the court-filing fee, the court gets directly involved in the case. During this stage, dates are set for finalizing the discovery stage, the deposition, and other matters.
- Deposition. Also known as an Examination Before Trial (EBT), the deposition stage is the first time both parties meet each other in an informal location outside of the courthouse. The meeting will be transcribed, and each party will answer questions regarding the accident and the allegations.
- Note of issue. A Note of Issue shows that all preliminary work on the case has been concluded and that the case is trial ready.
Following the Note of Issue is the trial, which is easily the most time-consuming part, involving the presentation of evidence, eyewitness testimony, and litigation.
Contact the NYC Personal Injury Attorneys at Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier, P.C.
Statistically, almost 90 percent of personal injury lawsuits in NYC are settled before trial, and 90 percent of cases that do go to trial settle before the verdict. Nonetheless, as you can see, some of the initial steps in filing a lawsuit are some of the most important, and they can determine the outcome of the rest of the case. Therefore, you need an experienced and loyal personal injury attorney who will guide you through the process every step of the way.
If you’ve been injured in an accident in New York, call the Manhattan personal injury attorneys at Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier today at (212) 777-9400. Free consultations are available.