Personal Injury Attorney Buffalo NY
Are you suffering from the effects of a serious personal injury accident? Was the accident that harmed you the result of someone else’s negligence?
If so, you and your family are probably grappling with the possibility of lost income, from missing hours on your job, and mounting medical bills due to the high cost of care and therapy. You need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you obtain the compensation you deserve, and get the peace of mind you need to speed along your recovery.
If you’ve suffered an injury because of the fault of another, the law gives you the right to compensation. The principle is simple: whoever is responsible for the harm you suffered should pay to make you whole again. But though it is simple in theory, it is rarely as simple in reality.
The Buffalo injury attorneys of Cole, Sorrentino, Hurley, Hewner & Gambino, P.C., aggressively seek fair financial compensation for their personal injury clients. We typically handle our personal injury cases on a contingency basis. You are not responsible for any attorneys’ fees unless we recover damages for you.
At Cole, Sorrentino, Hurley, Hewner, & Gambino, P.C., our attorneys understand it takes experience, dedication and skill to obtain the compensation you need for the harm you have suffered. Whether it’s an insurance company dragging its feet and trying to lowball you or another individual convinced they did nothing wrong, it’s rarely easy to get what you deserve through the courts. That’s why any personal injury attorney at our firm is ready to help the injured individuals and workers.
We also understand that suing for personal injuries can be a confusing process. That’s why we’ve provided the following overview of New York personal injury law.
Types of Personal Injury Lawsuits
There are two ways a personal injury lawsuit can arise: through the intentional act or the negligent act of another person.
Only a small number of personal injury lawsuits are the result of the intentional act of another, such as battery. The vast majority of personal injury lawsuits are the result of someone acting negligently. Types of serious accident personal injuries we actively represent on behalf of our Western New York clients include:
- Motor Vehicle Accidents
- Accidents Involving Uninsured or Underinsured Motorists
- Boating Accidents
- Defective or Malfunctioning Farm Equipment Accidents
- Premises Liability Accidents (Slip and Fall)
- Product Liability Accidents
- Dog Bites and Animal Attacks
But what exactly is a negligence lawsuit?
In order for someone who has suffered personal injuries to succeed in a suit for negligence, he or she must prove the following four elements:
- Duty. This refers to the fact that people are supposed to act a certain way. Drivers aren’t supposed to drive erratically or drunk while on the road and companies aren’t supposed to sell unsafe products without adequate warnings or protections.
- Breach of that duty. If no one has breached a duty, then there can’t be any negligence. Using the above example, a driver who runs a red light or a company that sells a medication without adequate warnings about its risks are potential examples of breached duty.
- Causation. The breach of the duty must be the actual cause of harm to the plaintiff. For example, if someone ran a red light, but the accident was because of another party driving drunk, then the driver who ran the red light isn’t responsible for the accident.
- Damages. This refers to the fact that the negligence must actually cause some form of harm, such as a personal injury. A plaintiff can’t recover damages if there wasn’t any damage.
Types of Damages Available Due to Personal Injury
In personal injury cases, the damages a plaintiff can recover will almost always be in the form of money. That calculation depends on the types of damages the plaintiff will be able to recover.
Damages can be classified into two types: compensatory and punitive. Compensatory damages, in turn, can be economic or non-economic.
Examples of economic compensatory damages include:
- Lost income
- Medical expenses
Examples of non-economic compensatory damages include:
- Loss of enjoyment
- Loss of consortium/companionship
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
Punitive damages are different – they don’t technically compensate the plaintiff for anything. Rather, they punish the person who acted negligently or intentionally.
The Personal Injury Lawsuit Process
If you are unlucky enough to have suffered an injury because of someone else’s negligence or intentional act, the process of seeking legal compensation will begin when you file a complaint. A complaint is basically a document listing who you’re suing, what you’re suing for, and why.
After you’ve filed the complaint, the court will serve the defendant with a complaint and a summons. The defendant will have to file an answer to the complaint. An answer is exactly what the name implies: the defendant will respond to the plaintiff’s allegations.
After the defendant has filed his or her answer, discovery can usually begin. During the discovery process, both sides will have opportunities to gather information to mount their legal arguments and defenses.
After discovery, there will be a trial. If both sides are satisfied satisfied with the results, the case is over. However, at least one side usually isn’t happy with the trial verdict, and will file an appeal. Once it reacheds the appeal stage, a case can drag on for years.
That said, most personal injury lawsuits usually do not go to trial. Most of the time, the parties settle before the trial can take place. This is because a trial is very unpredictable. Both sides try to avoid this unpredictability and settle the case before trial.
Injured? You Will Be Well Served Contacting Cole, Sorrentino, Hurley, Hewner, & Gambino, P.C.
A personal injury lawsuit is a complicated and potentially long and drawn-out endeavor. In order to ensure you recover everything you’re entitled to and do so as quickly as possible, you will need the services of a trained and experienced personal injury attorney.
The Advocacy You Need on Your Side After an Injury
If your loved one was killed in an accident resulting from another person’s negligence, our attorneys can assist you. We may be able to file a wrongful death claim against the responsible parties and recover compensation for you and your family.
Contact an experienced personal injury attorney at our Buffalo, Batavia, Hamburg, Cheektowaga, or Niagara Falls offices to set up your free initial consultation. You can reach us through this website or call us at the number above. We welcome the opportunity to serve you. We offer flexible appointment schedules and Spanish-speaking services if necessary.