It happens to the best of us: you’re out strolling down the sidewalk, minding your own business, when out of nowhere, you suffer an unfortunate accident.
Whether it’s a broken ankle, a twisted knee, or a slammed finger, the aftermath of a sidewalk accident can be understandably painful—both physically and financially.
If you’ve recently suffered an NYC sidewalk accident, you might wonder what your legal rights are and what you can claim in damages. Fortunately, we’re here to answer all your questions.
What Is a Sidewalk Accident?
A sidewalk accident is any incident where individual trips and falls or sustains some other kind of injury, such as being hit by a car on a sidewalk or walking path. There can be a variety of causes for this, including uneven grounds, obstructions in the path, and potholes.
These accidents are sometimes caused by a lack of maintenance from public and government authorities, which can expose pedestrians to tripping hazards and unsafe conditions. On the other hand, many sidewalk accidents result from pedestrians’ own negligence, such as not paying full attention to the pathway they are on or not wearing adequate footwear.
No matter who or what may be at fault, sidewalk accidents can cause serious physical and psychological trauma and should not be taken lightly. A comprehensive assessment of the incident regarding the individuals at fault, the evidence collected about safety issues on the terrain, and maintenance responsibilities are necessary for determining liability in such incidences.
Common Injuries and Damages Due to Sidewalk Accidents in NYC
According to data from the New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT), there were 10,851 reported pedestrian injuries and 118 pedestrian fatalities in New York City in 2019. Of those injuries, 4,378 were classified as severe, and 7,473 were classified as minor.
Sidewalk accidents can cause various physical and emotional injuries and financial losses. Common physical injuries suffered may include cuts, bruises, and scrapes; concussion; broken or fractured bones; spinal cord damage; burns; and even death in some cases. Additionally, those involved in sidewalk accidents may suffer from psychological trauma such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and loss of enjoyment of life.
If negligence is established in court, financial damages may include past and future medical costs, lost income, lost employment benefits, and potentially punitive damages.
It could be argued that individuals are responsible for their own safety when walking on sidewalks, meaning that victims should not be reimbursed for their consequent injuries suffered from incidents due to improper judgment or carelessness on their part. This is countered by the recognition that victims often have no control over the environment they are walking in and may encounter unexpected obstacles or dangerous conditions through no fault of their own. Furthermore, many accidents result from the negligence of owners or operators who fail to adequately maintain or provide safe walking surfaces.
Therefore, sidewalk accident victims must acquire legal advice to ensure any claims are properly assessed and taken forward if the evidence supports liability against another individual or organization. Understanding the range of common physical and psychological injuries and financial damages will also help victims understand how to calculate exactly how much they should be compensated for in a successful case. With this knowledge in hand, individuals affected by sidewalk accidents can focus on the next step: filing a physical injury claim.
Physical injury is one of the most common types of damages that can be claimed in the event of a sidewalk accident. From broken bones and contusions to head, neck and back injuries, these kinds of physical injuries can have long-term effects on an individual’s quality of life. Victims may experience extreme pain, which could require significant medical attention. In addition, some individuals may be unable to work for a period of time after the accident due to their injuries, resulting in further financial burdens.
On the one hand, it could be argued that victims should be unable to claim additional damages for physical injury beyond that which covers medical expenses and lost wages. After all, those affected by sidewalk accidents are typically entitled to receive compensation for the aforementioned losses anyway. On the other hand, many legal experts and court cases suggest that if a person incurs physical injuries due to a sidewalk accident and experiences pain or discomfort due to them, they are justified in claiming damages related to those injuries.
Ultimately, it is critical for victims involved in sidewalk accidents to seek medical attention as soon as possible after their incident occurs so that the extent of their physical injuries can be documented in order to better assess what type of compensation is necessary. With such documentation, victims can more fully understand the physical and emotional distress associated with such incidents and begin working toward obtaining appropriate restitution for their damages.
Emotional Distress, Pain, and Suffering
Once physical injuries have been addressed, sidewalk accident victims might suffer from emotional distress, pain, and suffering. Such claims are available for victims to file for additional compensation, though such claims can be difficult to prove since it is hard to put a monetary value on such damage. These damages include anxiety, depression, shock, and fear; loss of enjoyment of life; embarrassment or humiliation; reputation damage; mental anguish; post-traumatic stress disorder; and any long-term psychological trauma resulting from the incident in question.
In order to have a successful case for emotional distress or pain and suffering damages, victims must prove that the at-fault party’s actions were extreme and outrageous. Such cases are often complex due to the subjective nature of what qualifies as true emotional distress. Claims require evidence to demonstrate that such conditions existed before and after the accident; therefore, medical documents are often instrumental in providing proof of damages.
The courts will ultimately decide based on the surrounding circumstances to ascertain whether or not substantial emotional harm occurred due to the accident in question. If proven necessary, claimants may also require expert testimony from therapists who specialize in assessing mental health issues in order to build a strong case for compensation for such damages.
This type of computation involves considering how many injuries were incurred physically and emotionally due to the accident and how much work has been completed toward recovery to mitigate said injury. Understanding these nuances will aid you in making sure you retain sufficient legal representation when navigating your litigation journey, aided by laws that protect sidewalk accident victims.
Legal Claims You Can Make After a Sidewalk Accident
When someone is injured in a sidewalk accident, they may have the potential to make legal claims against the liable party. On one end of the spectrum, the person injured can bring a claim for physical and emotional injuries such as pain and suffering. Conversely, they can seek monetary compensation for medical bills and lost wages because they could not work.
For the former, an individual can argue that their pain was caused by negligence or wrongdoing on the part of another party. For example, if a person slips and falls on a slippery sidewalk that was improperly maintained or left uncleaned following a storm, there might be grounds to back up this claim. Evidence could include medical records detailing how the injury occurred and photographs documenting the dangerous conditions of the sidewalks surrounding the area.
Additionally, it’s worth noting that if someone sustains an injury from a defect in or failure of a man-made structure or design, whether it is on public or private property, then it may be wise to consult legal advice about product liability claims against the manufacturers and/or designers of the object in question.
All of these avenues pose viable opportunities for individuals seeking restitution after experiencing an unfortunate sidewalk accident. With strong evidence backing their claims in court, many victims of sidewalk accidents can affordably cover their damages without putting themselves into financial hardship. Now, as we discuss trial proceedings related to sidewalk accidents, let us first discuss what is necessary to file a lawsuit.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls are the leading cause of nonfatal injuries in the United States, accounting for more than 8.9 million visits to emergency departments each year.
- A study published in 2016 found that slip-and-fall accidents were responsible for nearly 40% of all unintentional injury fatalities in the U.S.
- In 2018, it was estimated that 8,414 pedestrian accidents occurred due to faulty or poorly maintained sidewalks and walkways.
Filing a Lawsuit
When it comes to filing a lawsuit against someone or a party that caused an injury while walking on a sidewalk, victims have the right to pursue justice if they can back up their claim with evidence. This could include medical bills, eyewitness accounts, photographic evidence, etc. It is important to note that filing a lawsuit can be a long, expensive, and complicated process filled with many unknowns, which should be considered when deciding to pursue legal action.
Additionally, vigilance can help – if, for example, signs of disrepair have been present in the area, documenting these before an accident may support your claim if you believe the responsible parties ignored safety regulations.
While filing a suit may appear daunting at first, in some cases, it can potentially lead to success and a satisfactory resolution for all parties involved. The importance of acting fast cannot be stressed enough—most claims will have a statute of limitations attached to them, so being aware of how long you have to file is essential for pursuing justice in a timely manner.
In essence, any personal injury can be more than just physically stressful; it can also be emotionally and financially draining. Thus, when considering whether to go through with filing a lawsuit for damages related to a sidewalk accident, having sound legal counsel advice could mean all the difference in finding a fair resolution. Speaking with qualified attorneys specializing in personal injury cases can equip you with quality information and the support needed to make an informed decision.
Finding an Experienced NYC Personal Injury Lawyer to Pursue Justice on Your Behalf
Having filed a lawsuit in New York, the next step is finding an effective legal team to pursue justice on your behalf. Your NYC personal injury attorney specializing in sidewalk accident cases can be of great service, as they will know exactly your rights and how best to provide solid evidence for your claim. However, having a knowledgeable attorney by your side doesn’t guarantee you a favorable outcome. Depending on the severity of the incident, it could go either way.
It is important to remember that there are two sides to every story. You need a solid legal team behind you with the experience and expertise to strengthen your case and win fair reparation for all damage incurred by accident, including court filing fees, medical bills, the cost of repairs, and social security disability payments, if applicable.
A good injury lawyer can help you prove responsibility through research into eyewitness accounts, video surveillance footage, records of past grievances against the sidewalk owner, and other relevant resources. Alternatively, a personal injury lawyer can work hard to minimize repercussions if the evidence does not favor the plaintiff’s side. Having support from experienced New York personal injury attorneys increases your chances of gaining a successful ruling and claiming rightful compensation for damages incurred due to someone else’s negligence.
The search for a qualified sidewalk accident attorney should begin soon after filing a lawsuit so that proper time can be given for a thorough investigation into resources that support or refute your mandatory claims. As you begin this process, make sure you understand what rights apply to sidewalk accidents under your local jurisdiction and New York state law. This will enable you to make an informed choice when selecting an attorney that aligns with your best interests.
Knowing these details before taking legal action will allow you to better calculate the expected costs associated with the car accident. This after-incident appraisal is vital to understanding the total damages during such an event to cover all necessary medical bills and repair costs when justice is served.
Calculating the Cost of Injuries Incurred During the Car Accident in New York City
When a person experiences a sidewalk accident, it is important to identify every cost associated with that injury. This includes economic losses (current and future) and non-economic losses (such as pain and suffering). When pursuing justice for the injured party, it is crucial to consider all costs associated with the accident when calculating damages.
One way to determine these costs is by examining medical bills and other related expenses incurred thus far. This can include transportation to and from medical appointments, any required medication or treatments, and any other out-of-pocket expenses associated with the injury or recovery. Experienced lawyers can draw upon their professional contacts and resources when assessing future medical needs or treatments to create an accurate projected estimate.
In addition to these economic costs, compensation for non-economic losses such as pain, suffering, emotional distress, and loss of consortium may also be sought. If applicable, various factors are considered when determining monetary awards for non-economic losses, including age, degree of injury, and past earning capacity. Calculating these types of damages can be difficult without a professional attorney’s guidance. A skilled car accident lawyer is able to assess these types of damages objectively and accurately using appropriate evidence and industry standards.
Overall, an experienced personal attorney in New York can offer invaluable knowledge when calculating damages in a sidewalk accident case. They will have access to the resources necessary to accurately estimate the costs associated with an injury both now and in the future. By seeking out a professional lawyer specializing in sidewalk accidents, injured parties can pursue fair compensation for all losses incurred due to another’s negligence.
Answers to Common Questions
Who Is Responsible for the Cost of Repairs After a Sidewalk Accident?
The person or party responsible for paying for the costs associated with repairs after a sidewalk accident is typically the homeowner or property owner. This is because the local municipality is typically responsible for maintaining public sidewalks and pathways. If an incident occurs due to defective sidewalk conditions, meaning that the maintenance standards were not met by the municipality, the homeowner is likely, not liable, whereas if an incident occurs due to a lack of upkeep on the part of the homeowner (such as cracks in the concrete that go unnoticed), then they would be held financially responsible. It ultimately comes down to who has been negligent when it comes to taking care of their property and maintaining safety standards on public walkways.
What Kinds of Evidence Do I Need to Support My Sidewalk Accident Claim?
The best evidence to support a sidewalk accident claim depends on the circumstances. Generally, however, it is essential to document any physical damages or injuries sustained in the incident and any medical treatment required. It may be helpful to take pictures of the accident site and any property damage caused by the accident.
Witnesses who can attest to the incident are also valuable forms of evidence. Finally, proof of communication with local authorities or other individuals involved in the case is often helpful. Collecting documentation such as police reports and insurance statements can provide additional support for your sidewalk accident claim.
What Are the Legal Requirements for Filing a Sidewalk Accident Claim?
In order to file a sidewalk accident claim, the individual filing must establish that they have sustained injury or property damage due to the negligence of another party. Generally, this may include proving that the sidewalk was not maintained in a safe condition, inadequate warnings in place surrounding a potentially hazardous area, or another party was otherwise negligent in creating a dangerous situation.
It is also important to note that certain time limits may apply when filing a sidewalk accident claim. Depending on where the incident occurred and applicable statutes, claimants may have a relatively brief window during which to file their claims or be prohibited altogether. Therefore, it is essential for individuals considering filing such a claim to take careful stock of any deadlines associated with the case and proceed accordingly.
Finally, collectible damages in sidewalk accidents typically vary depending on the circumstances under which the incident occurred and the corresponding extent of any injuries or property damage. Generally speaking, common forms of compensation may include payment for medical expenses incurred by those affected and reimbursement for lost earnings and/or other losses related to the situation.
Call Trusted Sidewalk Accident Attorneys in New York City
Ross & Hill is a highly respected law firm specializing in personal injury cases, including sidewalk accidents in New York City. With years of experience and a proven track record of success, Ross & Hill has established themselves as trusted attorneys in the field.
The attorneys at Ross & Hill deeply understand the laws and regulations related to sidewalk accidents in New York City. They know how to investigate the scene of an accident, gather evidence, and build a strong case on behalf of their clients. One thing that sets Ross & Hill apart from other law firms is their commitment to client satisfaction. They understand that being involved in an accident can be a traumatic experience, and they work tirelessly to make sure their clients feel supported and informed throughout the legal process. They are available to answer questions, provide guidance, and offer personalized attention to each client.
In addition to their expertise in sidewalk accidents, Ross & Hill handles many other personal injury cases, including car accidents, slip and fall accidents, and medical malpractice. They are known for their aggressive representation and their willingness to go to trial if necessary to get their clients the compensation they deserve. If you or a loved one has been injured in a sidewalk accident in New York City, you can trust the attorneys at Ross & Hill to fight for your rights. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how they can help you.