Buffalo Car Accident Attorneys
Providing Open, Honest Communication for Every Client
After you have been in a car accident, you can probably expect that the other driver’s auto insurance provider is going to be less than straightforward with you. Many companies have gained notoriety for giving claimants the runaround in an attempt to save their profits by avoiding payouts. If you’re already tired of dealing with people and parties who keep using confusing language whenever you talk to them, then you shouldn’t accept the same from your attorneys.
At Richmond Vona, LLC, we are known by locals throughout Buffalo for our honesty and frequent communications. We take pride in doing all we can to ensure our clients are not left uninformed, and for giving them truthful assessments of each situation. This deliberate approach to dependable casework has helped us secure more than $150 million in settlements and verdicts for our clients throughout the years.
Click to jump to any topic on this page:
- Common Causes of Car Accidents
- Who Pays for Car Damage in a No Fault State?
- When Can You Step Outside of the No-Fault System?
- What Is the 90/180 Day Rule?
- What Is Considered a Serious Injury?
- Is It Worth Getting a Car Accident Lawyer?
Common Causes of Car Accidents
While car accidents happen for all kinds of different reasons, most share an important common characteristic: most crashes could have and would have been prevented had proper safety precautions been taken. Simply put, the overwhelming majority of car accidents are caused by negligent drivers.
Some of the leading factors that cause auto accidents include:
- Running red lights
- Following too closely (tailgating)
- Failing to yield the right-of-way
- Making improper lane changes
- Driving while tired or fatigued
- Distracted driving
- Texting while driving
- Drunk driving
- Violating traffic laws/rules of the road
These are just some of the many common causes of motor vehicle accidents. If you or someone you care about was involved in an accident caused by one of the above-mentioned factors or any other form of negligence, reach out to our firm to learn how our Buffalo car accident attorneys can help.
Who Pays for Car Damage in a No Fault State?
One of the most important things that car accident victims should know when seeking compensation after a crash is that New York is a no-fault car insurance state. As explained by the New York Department of Financial Services, all motorists have a legal responsibility to carry the minimum required amount of auto insurance coverage.
In the event of a minor or moderate crash, New York’s no-fault law requires injured victims to seek financial compensation through their own insurance policy. Specifically, financial compensation for medical expenses may be available through your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage or MedPay coverage.
That is not to say that filing a no-fault car accident injury claim is always easy; unfortunately, even your own insurance company may give you a difficult time. If you are struggling to recover full and fair financial compensation through your insurer following an auto accident, our Buffalo car accident lawyers are ready to help you.
When Can You Step Outside of the No-Fault System?
New York’s no-fault laws apply to minor and moderate accidents. After a major crash, you may be eligible to bring a third-party liability claim. If you suffered a serious injury in a crash, you can step outside of the no-fault system and file a lawsuit directly against the negligent defendant. In these cases, injured victims may be eligible to recover financial compensation for the full value of their economic and non-economic damages.
Among other things, financial relief may be available for:
- Medical bills and related expenses
- Loss of current and future wages
- Pain and suffering
- Scarring/disfigurement and
- Permanent disability/impairment
What Is the 90/180 Day Rule?
The 90/180 day rule allows injured car accident victims to step outside of New York’s no-fault insurance system if they suffered a non-permanent injury or impairment that prevents them from engaging in their normal day-to-day activities for at least 90 days within the 180 day period following the crash.
In other words, injured victims who can present compelling medical evidence that they were prevented from living their normal life for at least three of the first six months after a car accident have the right to file a lawsuit against the negligent party who caused their crash.
What Is Considered a Serious Injury?
As previously mentioned, you can file a fault-based car accident claim in New York if you suffered a serious injury. In order to file such a claim, your physical injury must satisfy the state’s serious injury threshold.
Under New York law, the following types of injuries and ailments are considered to be severe enough to warrant stepping outside of the no-fault system:
- Broken/fractured bones
- Significant disfigurement
- Loss of a fetus
- Permanent limitation in the use of an organ
- Full disability, in excess of 90 days
What Forms of Distracted Driving Are There?
Were you in an accident with a distracted driver? It can be important to prove what sort of distraction they were engaging in. Our attorneys can investigate your case to uncover details that show how they were distracted and why that added to their liability. Distractions can take many forms, like texting, eating, applying makeup, changing the music, and so on. All forms of distraction can be sorted into three categories, though.
The three forms of driver distraction are:
- Visual: When a driver takes their eyes off the road, they have been distracted visually.
- Manual: When a driver takes their hands off the steering wheel, they have been distracted manually.
- Cognitive or mental: When a driver takes their mind off the task of driving, they have been distracted cognitively.
Why is Texting & Driving So Dangerous?
Texting and driving is believed to be the most common cause of distracted driving accidents by a wide margin. Not every driver wants to eat while driving or needs to self-groom on the way to work, but nearly every driver owns a smartphone that goes everywhere with them, so it makes sense that it is so common. Unfortunately, texting and driving is also one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving because it engages the driver in all three forms of distraction at once.
- Picking up the phone is a manual distraction.
- Reading a text is a visual distraction.
- Thinking about a text is a mental distraction.
When texting and driving, a driver is essentially doing nothing to stay in control of their vehicle. They will have practically no chance to react to a sudden hazard on the road, like stopped traffic or a pedestrian.
Are Drunk Drivers Automatically Liable?
Drunk driving is illegal, but does it also make the driver automatically liable for a crash they are in? No, not necessarily. Liability must be established in all car accident claims, and it is often not enough to pin liability on someone solely because they were drunk. They must have done something to have directly caused the crash. Drunk driving certainly makes someone at a higher chance of being liable, but it is not automatic.
Is It Worth Getting a Car Accident Lawyer?
The simple answer is: Yes! Whether you have suffered serious injuries or minor injuries, having an auto accident lawyer on your side can help ensure that you get the compensation you deserve. Oftentimes insurance companies will try to take advantage of accident victims in order to protect their bottom line. With our help, you can ensure your rights are protected no matter what.
Call us at (716) 300-5885 today to learn how our Buffalo car accident attorneys can help you fight for a fair recovery. Your initial consultation is completely free and there are no fees unless we win your case.
Buffalo Car Accident Attorneys
Fighting for the Recovery You Deserve
At Richmond Vona, LLC, our Buffalo car accident lawyers are compassionate and aggressive advocates for injured victims. We have the skills and experience needed to handle a full range of motor vehicle accident claims, including complex cases involving multiple liable parties and catastrophic injuries.
If you or your loved one suffered a serious injury in an automobile accident in Western New York, you need to protect your health and your rights by consulting with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. The insurance company is not your friend; we strongly recommend that you do not speak to anyone from the other driver’s insurance provider until you have first spoken to a car accident lawyer who can help you understand your legal rights and options.
Call our firm at (716) 300-5885 or contact us online today to request a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our Buffalo car accident attorneys. We want to fight for you!
After being involved in a car accident, you may feel overwhelmed with questions about what comes next. When you turn to our firm, you can trust that you’ll get the answers you need, as well as the caring support and guidance you deserve.
Auto accident victims have the right to seek financial compensation from negligent drivers and their insurance companies. If you or your family member was injured in a car crash, contact Richmond Vona, LLC for a free, no-obligation consultation. With an office in Buffalo, we represent injured victims throughout Western New York, including in Erie County, Niagara County, Wyoming County, and Genesee County.
A Results-Oriented Focus
Our legal team is prepared to do whatever is necessary to get you the full and fair financial compensation that you deserve.
Care, Compassion & Respect
After all you’ve been through, you deserve someone to fight for you, while providing the individual attention you deserve.
Open and Honest Communication
We value communication and honesty, and we promise to always keep you informed and up to date about your case.
Personalized Legal Representation
When you entrust your case to our skilled attorneys, you become part of the Richmond Vona family - not just another case file.