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Sidewalk Laws in New York City 1
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Sidewalk Laws in New York City

Sidewalk Laws in New York City New York City has about 13,000 miles of sidewalks, which are heavily travelled upon by pedestrians.  It is therefore important that the sidewalks are safe and free of defect or dangerous conditions that would cause fall and injury.  Sidewalks are subject to wear and tear and to the effects of the environment and climate.  Sidewalks crack, buckle, collapse; sidewalks slope with downward depressions or upward elevations; sidewalk cracks or holes accumulate moisture that cause deterioration and distortion; sidewalks are uplifted by tree roots; etc. The City of New York enacted a change to the law concerning property owner liability for injuries caused by unsafe sidewalk conditions. The law, Local Law 49 of [...]

PEDESTRIANS – WALK ALERT AND ATTENTIVE!

PEDESTRIANS – WALK ALERT AND ATTENTIVE!Recent studies find an increase in pedestrian fatalities.The spike in pedestrian deaths and injuries is attributable a few factors.  Distraction by cell phones and electronic devices seems to be a prevailing cause.  Interestingly, it is not only the vehicle drivers distracted by cell phone use while driving but also the pedestrians who engage in the use of cell phones and electronic devices while walking!Pedestrians cannot assume because they are pedestrians that vehicle traffic will yield to them.  Pedestrians cannot walk (or jog) without observation and look-out.  Pedestrians cannot be oblivious to traffic around them. It’s bad enough that pedestrians are targets of unyielding turning vehicles, speeding vehicles, red-light and stop-sign disobeying vehicles (not to [...]

A Bifurcated Trial – What it Means for Your Personal Injury Case?

What is A Bifurcated Trial? In a personal injury case, depending in which county your case is brought in New York State, your action may have to be tried in two trials.  That is called a bifurcated trial.  Michael Manoussos & Co PLLC, a New York City personal injury law firm understands the ramifications of bifurcated trials and have the experience to maximize your recovery. In a bifurcated trial, the trial is broken up into two trials.  That is, the first trial is the liability phase, where only the issue of fault is tried and determined and the jury decides whether or not the defendant is liable and should be responsible for the happening of the accident or [...]

One “Serious Injury” = All Injuries in

One "Serious Injury" = All Injuries CompensableWe discussed in a previous post that not all injuries from a motor vehicle accident are compensable; only "serious" injuries are entitled to compensation for pain and suffering.  The term "serious injury" is defined in the Insurance Law and the Courts have further defined "serious injury" in numerous appellate cases.  What if there are several injuries and some are "serious", but some are not?  In this scenario, the Courts have held that once the plaintiff proves a "serious injury" with respect to any body part, all injuries are then compensable under the law.  This means that, for example, if you sustained a fractured wrist in a motor vehicle accident (which is a "serious" [...]

Insect Infestation in Dwelling

Insect Infestation in Dwelling In a city this large and crowded, it is inevitable that we share our city with millions of rodents, insects, and other pests.  We've all seen a rat on thesubway tracks at some point.  What if you have an infestation in your apartment?  The Multiple Dwelling Law requires the owner of every multiple dwelling to keep their building "clean and free from vermin, dirt, filth, garbage or other thing or matter dangerous to life or health."  There are comparable mandates for hotels and motels.  If you discover an infestation in your apartment, call 311 immediately.  The complaints you make are logged, recorded, and referred to the appropriate city agency so the insects can be [...]

Liability Physical Examination

Liability Physical Examination After the deposition in a personal injury action, the defense is entitled to have a physician or multiple physicians, depending on the nature of your injuries, Portrait of young doctor listening to patients symptoms sitting at desk in office, copy space examine you. While this may seem intrusive, the law is that when one claims personal injuries, their physical condition is relevant and the defense is entitled to have an expert or experts of their choosing assess your physical condition. Since the purpose of this examination is defending against a personal injury case and not medical treatment, there is no doctor-patient relationship and hence no doctor-patient confidentiality. The physician who examines is often [...]

No Fault Insurance IMEs (Physical Examinations)

No Fault Insurance IMEs (Physical Examinations) No-fault insurance covers the "reasonable and necessary" medical expenses of individuals involved in a car accident in NYS. But what exactly is "reasonable and necessary" and who decides it? The answer to the first question will obviously vary from case to case, but the answer to the second question is always the same: a medical professional (such as an orthopedist, neurologist, chiropractor, acupuncturist, or physiatrist) hired and paid by your insurance carrier will examine you at a time and place of their choosing. So, the examinations are not independent medical examinations (IMEs) at all. They’re physical examinations conducted by doctors designated by the insurance company from whom they get this business. The [...]

The “duty to see that which is there to be seen”

The "duty to see that which is there to be seen" Though not expressly stated in the VTL, Courts impose upon all drivers a duty to see that which is there to be seen.  This does not mean that a driver must see absolutely everything, but it does mean that a driver who fails to see, for example, a pedestrian crossing the street or a vehicle running a red light will likely bear some liability for the happening of a resulting accident.  This may seem counterintuitive (think, "How could I have avoided the accident? I didn't even see the guy!"), but when considered carefully, it makes perfect sense.  A driver who is keeping a diligent look-out and properly [...]

Maximizing No Fault benefits

Maximizing No-Fault benefits In addition to your reasonable and necessary medical expenses, no-fault insurance covers other reasonable and necessary expenses up to $25 per day following the accident.  There are 3 keys to maximizing the benefits you receive, that you paid for, and are entitled to: documentation, documentation, and documentation.  For example, suppose you don't own a car and have had to take a taxi back and forth to your doctor's appointments.  If you keep receipts that show the date and the amount paid, that expense can be reimbursed.  Similarly, if you drive yourself to the doctor, you're entitled to be compensated for the mileage and if you pay out of pocket for prescription medications or medical devices [...]

What is No-Fault insurance?

What is No-Fault insurance? As a result of what the insurance lobby argued was excessive litigation arising out of motor vehicle accidents, the legislature in 1974 enacted the "New York Comprehensive Automobile Insurance Act" or, in layman's terms, "no-fault insurance".  Every vehicle registered in New York State is required to have this type of coverage, which pays for "basic economic loss".  The rationale is that if an accident victim's basic needs arising from an accident are met by his insurance carrier, the amount of litigation from these types of cases will decrease.  You are entitled to these benefits regardless of who or what caused the accident (fn, drunk driving etc.).  The typical no-fault policy includes up to $50K of [...]