Whether you are a resident of New York City, New York or a visitor from abroad, the one thing you should always keep in the back of your mind when driving in the Big Apple is that the traffic is horrendous. Cars are always bumper to bumper in this huge metropolitan area with a population of more than 8.6 million residents as of the latest figures as estimated in 2016. Imagine a city more than one-half a million people larger than London, for instance, and you will understand just how packed roads and highways will be. With everyone always in a hurry, NYC sees more than its fair share of accidents. If you have been injured or suffered property damage as a result of a car accident in New York, here are some practical tips for getting the compensation you so rightfully deserve.
1. Report the Accident Immediately
Although some drivers are content with swapping insurance and contact information, this could work against you. Always insist on calling the police if it’s more than a mere scratch on a bumper. Even then, some people are notoriously devious and will inflict further damage to make a claim. It is especially important to have a verifiable account of an accident, so do call the police to file a report.
2. Talk to No One BUT an Attorney After Filing a Claim
If you are injured or suffered property damage or loss due to a not-at-fault accident in NYC, it pays to talk to no one but your attorney once you’ve filed your claim with your insurance company and the insurer of the at-fault driver. It truly pays to get help from a car accident lawyer in NYC because they can advise you on what to say and who you can trust. Actually, this would be no one! Bear in mind that insurance companies are in business to make money, so they are always reluctant to pay compensation if they can avoid it. A car accident lawyer specializes in getting compensation for their clients so they will be in the best position to counsel you.
3. Record and Document Everything
As mentioned above, it is vital to have records of everything no matter how seemingly unimportant it may seem at the moment. This is especially true of non-residents who seek to file a claim for compensation for bodily injuries. It’s not like doctors from abroad are linked to healthcare systems in the United States, so there may be no way for courts and attorneys to pull records, even with preauthorization. Keep all doctor visits, surgeries and any other associated costs well documented. If the claim goes to court, which many will, you will need this documentation to support your claim.
When all is said and done, the best tip you can be given when involved in a car accident in New York City is to contact an attorney immediately. Some people even contact a lawyer before contacting the other driver’s insurance company. It’s always wise to err on the side of caution, so if you have any doubts as to what you should say and to whom you should speak, let your attorney do the speaking for you. They don’t get paid unless you do, so you can be sure they are working on your behalf!