Auto/motor Vehicle Accidents
Auto Accident & Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney
Serving Rochester NY & Surrounding Areas
It is crucial that prompt notification be given to all insurance companies involved. Often there can be several insurance carriers who should be notified. Victims of auto accidents are ordinarily covered by no-fault through their own insurance company. No- fault benefits are limited to lost wages and medical expenses. No-fault does not provide compensation for pain and suffering or permanent injuries. No-fault coverage is limited by time and amount. Once this coverage is exhausted, other secondary coverage may apply. The attorney handling your case must coordinate the types of insurance that will pay your medical expenses and when these payments are made. If the wrong secondary coverage is used, this can have devastating consequences in the injury lawsuit, as some coverages must be paid back to the no-fault insurance company from a settlement, and others do not.
An immediate, thorough investigation by a competent private investigator must be undertaken in cases of serious injury, even when responsibility may seem obvious. Witnesses may soon become unavailable, or may relocate, and must be contacted as soon as possible before insurance investigators make first contact.
In New York, motorists are required to carry only $25,000 in liability insurance. You do not want your recovery limited to such a small amount. Even in a less severe case, this minimum coverage is a pittance. This is why you need a competent attorney who will endeavor to find additional insurance coverage or other sources of recovery for your injuries. Often several insurance policies may apply to an accident and be "stacked" to provide additional coverage; only a qualified attorney will know where to look for this coverage. Moreover, all insurance carriers must be notified promptly or the accident victim may forfeit their rights to stacking additional coverage.
In addition, New York State now requires the availability of Supplemental Uninsured Motorist (SUM) coverage, which provides compensation for pain and suffering and permanency through the victim's own carrier if the irresponsible driver's insurance is inadequate. Accident victims are often unaware of this important coverage. Specific notification to the victim's carrier must be given in writing, and promptly, or your right to this additional coverage may be lost forever.