New Jersey Car Accident Lawyer

New Jersey Car Accident Attorney

Motor vehicle crashes are still one of the leading causes of serious injuries and fatalities in New Jersey and across America. As per the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), there were more than 275,000 traffic collisions in our state in 2019 alone. Many of these accidents resulted in severe, catastrophic, or even fatal injuries and required the services of reputable New Jersey car accident attorneys.

Types of car accidents 

New Jersey has a lot of different roads and highways, and a car collision can happen anywhere. Some crashes are more common than others, such as:

  • Intersection crashes, an illegal left turn, not following a four-way stop, and speeding through an intersection are common ways these accidents occur.Car accident in NYC
  • Rollovers: SUVs and trucks are susceptible to rollover accidents because of their design. When these vehicles make sharp turns or are struck on the highway, they can land in a ditch or worse. 
  • Side impact collisions: catastrophe ensues when one vehicle hits the side of another car. The airbags will likely deploy, leading to more injuries and property damage.  
  • Highway accidents: these accidents are hazardous because vehicles are traveling at high speeds, and when a collision occurs, the results are worse than on residential streets. 

A collision can occur anywhere in New Jersey or New York and you should always take caution for reckless drivers around you. Even so, you cannot avoid collisions when a driver is determined to put others in danger. 

Negligence in Car Accidents 

Car accidents are catastrophic, and even a minor collision can lead to significant consequences. Finding who is legally responsible for the crash is vital because they must pay for their actions. There are also criminal components to car accidents that can affect who is negligent and legally responsible for paying you for your losses. Some behaviors are extraordinarily reckless and indicative of driver fault, such as:

  • SpeedingVarcadipane & Pinnisi Distracted Driver Accident Black and white
  • Drunk driving 
  • Driver fatigue
  • Aggressive driving 
  • Distracted driving 
  • Drugged driving 
  • Failure to obey traffic signs and signals 

These are a few examples, but authorities and your Bronx lawyer will look for legal duty, breach, causation, and damages during an investigation. These four elements must be present to prove fault. 

Legal duty 

The simplest element to prove is a legal duty because all drivers on the road owe each other a duty to operate their vehicles reasonably and safely. They are responsible for avoiding accidents and using discernment before they get behind the wheel. 

Breach of duty 

Since all drivers have a legal duty to each other, pedestrians, and others, the next element is proving there was a breach of this duty. Establishing a breach of duty requires that the average person would have known that a person would be injured if they partook in these negligent actions. The average person would, with this knowledge, act differently. A prime example is a drunk driver; the average person would assume that an injury can occur from drunk driving. The average person would not drive drunk to cause injuries. When a person drives drunk, they assume these risks and therefore are in breach of their legal duty, 

Causation 

The elements prove the breach of duty was a direct cause of your injuries and ailments. If you were in good health and did not have any injuries before the accident and now have a slew of injuries, causation is easier to prove. However, some cases involve the injured party exasperating an existing injury. The insurance company will use this to its advantage and say that the injury was pre-existing and the plaintiff is only trying to get medical treatment for an injury unrelated to the collision. One way to circumvent these accusations is getting medical treatment at the scene and attending all follow-up care. 

Damages 

Lastly, you will need to show losses or damages from the collision. There is a more extensive outline of damages on this page, but generally, these damages are medical expenses, and lost wages, among others. You will also need to account for future losses resulting from the collisions. Experienced personal injury attorneys can calculate and correlate past and future damages to the accident. 

Determining fault in a New Jersey car accident 

After an accident, you believe you know who is responsible and who should pay for your losses. However, it is more complex than you think. Your experienced car accident attorney will need to investigate who is at fault and how they can prove to the insurance company that you deserve the payment you are asking for. New Jersey has a no-fault set of regulations, so your insurance company will pay for some of your losses regardless of fault. Some of the parties who can be responsible for your collision are:

  • MotoristsHigh-Tech Industry: Engineer Designing 3D Engine, Using Augmented Reality Hologram Table to Analyse Prototype Model.
  • Mechanic
  • Pedestrian or bicyclist
  • Automotive designer 
  • Auto manufacturer
  • Owner of the vehicle if they are not driving 
  • Property owners
  • Local municipalities

The entity responsible for your accident may be someone different from you think. While the no-fault system can make the recovery process more manageable, that doesn’t mean you get a fair amount of compensation. Filing an insurance claim can hinder your ability to file a lawsuit, and it is best to speak with our motor vehicle accident attorneys. Some Insurance companies do not allow claims for pain and suffering, so before you file an insurance claim, talk to a certified civil trial lawyer

Standard insurance policy 

If you have a standard insurance policy, you have the ability and the right to sue the negligent party. You can recover pain and suffer damages. If you have a policy that has limited right to sue, then you cannot file a claim that includes pain and suffering barring any permanent injuries or:

  • Disfigurement or severe scarring
  • Loss of a body part
  • Loss of fetus
  • Displaced fractures
  • Death 

Pain and suffering do not apply to all cases, and there are requirements for you to request these damages. Discuss those options with your auto accidents lawyer to determine if you qualify for pain and suffering, if your insurance policy allows you to file a claim, or if you need to take a different legal route. 

Injuries in car crashes 

The injuries you suffer from a car accident are detrimental to your life and are the basis of your insurance claim. How the collision occurs will often determine the severity and type of injury you will suffer. Immediately after a crash, you can begin to feel pain and know there is something wrong. Some injuries appear days or weeks after the adrenaline and shock have worn off. The most common New Jersey car accident injuries include:

  • WhiplashDoctors looking for spinal Injuries in a car crash victim's radiography
  • Broken bones 
  • Brain damage
  • Burns 
  • Herniated discs
  • Back injuries
  • Spinal cord trauma
  • Lacerations 
  • Amputations

Your injuries require physical therapy, surgery, medication, and other rehabilitative care. These injuries will require extensive medical treatment immediately following the accident and for years to come. From the collision, you will be taken to the hospital and may need to stay there for days while the medical personnel determines what is wrong and your treatment plan. 

Additionally, your injuries will prevent you from working and require you to have family take care of you. There is no way to determine how an injury will impact a person’s life until you get medical care. The type of vehicle in the accident will also affect how severe your injuries are. Get medical care and stay in contact with your New Jersey car accident attorney regarding your care so they can request relevant medical files. 

What to Do After a New Jersey Auto Accident

Auto accident injury claims are inherently complex. Unfortunately, far too many innocent accident victims make mistakes in the moments, days, and weeks that follow their wreck. As such, it becomes harder for them to obtain a full and fair recovery for their damages.

If you were in a car accident in New Jersey or New York, there are several steps you should take to preserve your injury claim:

Report the Crash

Under New Jersey law, all motor vehicle collisions that cause injuries or a minimum of $500 of property damage have to be reported to the local law enforcement agency. Following such a crash, call and request that a police officer come to the scene to make an official report. Your NJ car accident lawyer can use this report as evidence in your case.

Get Medical Helpprofessional breaches their duty of care. Paramedic posing for camera, ambulance crew transporting patient on background.

If you were injured in an accident, it’s critical that you seek professional medical care. If that weren’t reason enough, you won’t be able to obtain financial compensation for your injuries without valid medical records that detail the physical harm you incurred. It’s best to seek medical care after a car accident, both for your health and so that the other driver’s insurance company doesn’t attempt to claim that you suffered your injuries later.

Many accident victims skip getting the medical care they need because they don’t have any pain or feel like their injuries warrant such a step. Keep in mind that sometimes adrenaline can stop you from feeling pain, or the symptoms of your injury could be delayed. Seeking medical attention, even if it’s just to ensure you haven’t suffered any injuries, is always in your best interest. 

Collect Evidence

Evidence is a key component of successful car accident claims. You need evidence to prove who is liable for the accident, how the accident happened, and the damages the accident caused. Collect as much evidence at the crash scene as you possibly can, including:

  • The contact and insurance information from other drivers
  • The police report (you may have to get this at a later date from the police department)
  • Pictures of the damage and any injuries have
  • Contact information for any witnesses

In the event that you need to get emergency medical attention, ask a family member or friend to collect evidence and get witness information on your behalf.

Meet with an Experienced New Jersey Car Accident Attorney

Finally, meet with an experienced New York or New Jersey car accident attorney to discuss your accident and injury claim. Don’t attempt to go through this process on your own. It’s typical for insurance companies to try to intimidate injured claimants and offer them less money than they deserve. Reach out to a qualified New Jersey car accident attorney as soon as possible so that they can help protect you in your interactions with the insurance companies and their adjusters. Don’t ever feel pressured to speak to the insurance company before talking to a New Jersey auto accident lawyer. 

The New Jersey Statute of Limitations

After suffering injuries in a car accident, you only have so long to file a personal injury claim. In New Jersey, you only have two years from the date of the accident, whereas, in New York, you have three. This crucial deadline is known as the statute of limitations. If you miss the deadline for filing a legal claim, you no longer have any legal recourse to pursue the compensation you deserve for your injuries. This makes contacting a New York or New Jersey car accident attorney as soon as you can even more essential.

Common Aggressive Driving Behaviors

Driving can be frustrating for everyone at times. Everyone has been stuck in traffic or behind slower cars when they are running late, but some people allow these frustrating situations to escalate into dangerous ones. When drivers become aggressive, they endanger the lives of everyone else on the road.

Did an aggressive driver crash into your vehicle, and you suffered injuries? First, ensure you get the medical attention you need. Then, reach out to a personal injury lawyer for information about your legal rights.

It can be fairly easy to spot many aggressive drivers on the road. These are the drivers who are speeding and swerving through traffic, trying to get ahead of everyone else. However, no matter what you do to avoid and steer clear of such drivers, you cannot always prevent them from crashing and causing you injuries.

Some common aggressive driving behaviors that can lead to auto accidents include:

  • Excessive speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Unlawful passing or lane changes
  • Running red lights
  • Honking excessively

Most of these behaviors are against traffic laws, and drivers might receive citations or even get arrested following an accident if law enforcement determines they were in violation of the law. Never trust that a criminal case will help you recover from your losses, as you will also need to take legal action to hold the aggressive driver accountable for your injuries.

What to Do After an Aggressive Driver Hits You

Get Medical AttentionAggressive driver causing an accident in New Jersey

Immediately after an aggressive driving car accident, you want to make sure that you get the medical attention you need. Whether this involves an ambulance ride or taking yourself to the emergency room, you want to get any possible injuries diagnosed as soon as possible. This helps you in two important ways:

  • You can begin the treatment you need immediately, which can improve your prognosis and help to minimize the effects of your injury whenever possible.
  • You will have official medical records closely connecting your injuries with the accident, so you can prove the extent of your injuries if the insurance company tries to challenge your claim.

Speak with a Car Accident Lawyer in NJ

Once your physical condition is stable, you should not wait to speak with a New Jersey car accident lawyer. The insurance company of the aggressive driver might try to contact you right away to make an offer of payment. You might think this is the easiest way to resolve the matter – after all, having a check in your hand as soon as possible sounds attractive. However, this offer is likely much less than you deserve, and if you accept it, you cannot ask for more at a later date.

Instead, have an attorney handle all communications with the insurance company. This way, the insurer will know that it cannot trick you into accepting an insufficient settlement, and your attorney can work to ensure you receive as much as you deserve from the aggressive driver.

Distracted Driving is Against the Law and Makes a Driver Liable for Damages 

Man looking at mobile phone while driving a car.

Driving in the modern world is both safer than ever due to the features in automobiles and also more dangerous than ever given the distractions that drivers now encounter. From billboards to smartphones, there are constantly things in the world calling the driver’s attention away from the road, leading to distracted driving and often causing serious accidents. 

The New Jersey personal injury attorneys at Varcadipane & Pinnisi, PC, have the experience and knowledge to stand up for victims of distracted driving accidents and hold negligent drivers fully responsible for the harm they cause. Contact our firm for an evaluation of your situation today.

If a driver violates the law and causes an accident, they should be liable for the injuries and losses that result. There are strict laws in New Jersey against texting or using handheld mobile devices while driving, and for good reason. Distracted driving is a dangerous activity that caused the deaths of 3,142 individuals in 2019 alone and is considered one of the leading dangers on American roads today. 

Distracted driving is more than just texting, however, and it can involve any activity that takes attention away from driving. These include:

  • Talking or texting on your phone
  • Eating or drinking
  • Using the in-vehicle entertainment or navigation system
  • Speaking to passengers
  • Paying attention to children in the back seat 

Distracted driving causes many car accidents, and if a driver was distracted when they hit you, they should be liable for the damages. 

Knowing whether another driver in an accident was talking on their phone or otherwise distracted while driving can be difficult to determine for most individuals. You were in your own vehicle, watching the road, and likely could not see into other drivers’ vehicles. An attorney knows what questions to ask and what evidence to collect to prove that a driver was distracted. They can also use other subsequent illegal driving behaviors caused by distractions to prove liability – such as veering from a lane, failing to stop, or running a red light. 

Recovering damages from a car accident 

You can recover two kinds of damages from a car accident claim in New Jersey. You can get economic and non-economic damages. Economics covers material losses, and non-economic is non-monetary harm you suffer, like pain and suffering. At the same time, you can be awarded both compensation; you will get one lump payment of the damages. Your award includes payment for past and future expenses, and many victims will get a financial planner to ensure they are handling the settlement award correctly. Economic damages you can get include:

  • Lost income Paramus New Jersey attorneys in Varcadipane & Pinnisi explain a car accident from a legal view
  • Medical bills 
  • Rental vehicle expenses
  • Towing 
  • Property damage 
  • Medication costs

Calculating past expenses is easy because there are receipts and a paper trail of damages and medical documents. Future costs are more challenging to calculate because they estimate what you will incur and require expert advice and a long-term medical prognosis. You will likely need an economist or labor expert to determine how your medical prognosis will impact your future employment opportunities. Some future losses you can recover are:

  • Future medical expense
  • Future nursing costs
  • Loss of household services 
  • Loss of earning capacity and income 

Non-economic damages are not as exhaustive, and you can recover compensation for:

  • Loss of enjoyment of lifeClose up depressed mature woman crying, thinking about health or family problems, sitting on couch alone, frustrated lonely middle aged female lost in thoughts, memories, grieving, bad news
  • Emotional distress
  • Pain and suffering 
  • Loss of companionship 
  • Loss of consortium 

Calculating pain and suffering and other non-economic damages are complex, and insurance companies are unwilling to pay these claims. You must have an auto accident lawyer who can work with experts to look at the severity of your injuries and the long-term pain you will endure, like sleep problems and issues with relationships. 

Tips when dealing with the insurance adjuster 

Having a New Jersey car collision lawyer handle all communications is in your best interests. Still, the insurance company is very sneaky and can contact you before you seek legal guidance. The insurance adjuster is working against you even though they are supposed to be helping you through the process. It is vital to follow these tips when dealing with the insurance company, especially if you do not have legal guidance.

The adjuster is working for themselves.

The insurance adjuster will be kind and compassionate, but they are not your friend. Car accident victims believe that when an adjuster is kind, they are there to help them, but kindness is not indicative of their willingness to help you. The adjuster is not working for you, and they do not care what happens to you. They want you to receive nothing or as little as possible. Do not let your guard down when you are stuck speaking to them. The adjuster will often try to convince you that you do not need a Jersey car accident lawyer because they know once an attorney is involved, they cannot use the same sneaky tactics they would on you. 

Watch what you say

Automotive business, car sale or rental concept : Happy customer with car dealer agent making deal and signing on agreement document contract in auto showroom or car dealer office.Anything you say is used against you; the adjuster can twist the truth in the insurance company’s favor. Your statement might seem absent-minded and irrelevant, but the issuance company does not. Do not joke or be sarcastic. They take your words at face value and will rush to get you to make a recorded statement. They will ask leading questions and misinterpret what you are saying. Refuse to make any statements without your New Jersey auto accident attorney present. If you’re taking medication, you should avoid making any statements because medication impairs your cognitive function. 

Adjusters are negative

One tactic the adjuster will use is diminishing your claim by using language that suggests it is not worth anything. They will use subtle hints and language to accomplish this before they offer you a lowball settlement. You’re led to believe there is something wrong with your case and therefore do not expect to receive substantial compensation. 

Conversely, you should not speak negatively about anyone in the accident, even if they cause you harm. If you talk to an adjuster, put on a poker face and limit your answers to three words. Most answers will be yes, no, or I don’t remember. If you get a question regarding how fast you were going, say “within the posted speed” or “I was not” if you were stagnant. Do not give specifics ever. 

Do not accept the settlement. 

Quick settlements are a major red flag. The insurance company will pressure injured victims to settle before they even have a prognosis for their ailments. Once you settle, you cannot request additional compensation or take other legal steps. When you settle quickly, it is impossible to determine the severity of your injuries and your claim’s worth. Your injuries might be extensive and life-altering, but you do not have a prognosis during the first month. The insurance company offers you a fraction of what you need to recover, and you are left with years of piling medical bills and no legal options. Victims can reject a settlement if they do not feel it is sufficient. Always work with a New Jersey auto accident lawyer to determine if the settlement is right for you. 

Contact the New Jersey Car Accident Attorneys at Varcadipane & Pinnisi Today

Once your physical condition is stable, you should not wait to speak with a New Jersey car accident lawyer. The insurance company of the aggressive driver might try to contact you right away to make an offer of payment. You might think this is the easiest way to resolve the matter – after all, having a check in your hand as soon as possible sounds attractive. However, this offer is likely much less than you deserve, and if you accept it, you cannot ask for more at a later date.

Instead, have an attorney handle all communications with the insurance company. This way, the insurer will know that it cannot trick you into accepting an insufficient settlement, and your attorney can work to ensure you receive as much as you deserve from the aggressive driver.

Our best auto accident lawyers are here to help accident victims and their families through this difficult time. Suppose you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident in New Jersey or New York. In that case, you can count on Varcadipane & Pinnisi, PC, to be here for you. Call us at 800-616-2916 or contact us online to schedule a free case review with an experienced New Jersey car accident attorney and learn about our services. 

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