Personal Injury Attorneys

Is there a difference between a workers’ compensation claim and a personal injury claim? Yes!

In personal injury, whether you’re injured on the job or not, you must prove that someone else was at fault or legally responsible for your injuries. In a personal injury case you can collect for things that you can’t collect for in workers’ compensation—most importantly, pain and suffering. But in personal injury, whether it be a construction accident or car accident, you can’t bring claim against your employer or a co-worker, even if they’re at fault.

That’s not to say you can’t have both a workers’ compensation and a personal injury claim arising out of the same work-related accident—it happens all the time. In these situations, the personal injury claim must be brought against a third-party, that is, someone other than your employer or co-worker.

Common Personal Injury Questions

When asked how long a man’s legs should be, Abraham Lincoln responded, “Just long enough to reach the ground.” Personal injury cases, depending on the nature and seriousness of the injuries, whether the case can be settled before trial, the complexities of the case, and many other factors all play a role in determining how long it will take to resolve your case. In every case, it’s our goal to respond to your needs and to initiate prompt legal action so your case can be resolved as fairly and quickly as possible.

Some of the items of damage you may receive include:

  • past and future pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life due to your injuries;
  • past and future lost wages and other financial benefits lost due to your disability from work;
  • past and future medical bills relating to the injuries you suffered;
  • if you’re married, your spouse has a claim for the loss caused to your marriage including loss of love, companionship and spousal services;
  • in cases of death, financial losses caused to the decedent’s spouse, children and other dependants.

In New York State, an injured adult generally has three (3) years to start a lawsuit against the negligent person or entity, beginning from the time the accident occurred. However, a medical malpractice lawsuit is generally two and one half (2 ½) years from the time the malpractice occurred. A personal injury claim against New York State must be filed within two (2) years, although you have only one (1) year and ninety (90) days to file against a city, county or other municipality. Against a school district you have only one (1) year. It’s important to recognize that you must also file a written Notice of Claim within ninety (90) days of your accident for any claim against a municipality, including New York State, school districts and most public authorities. This has to be done before you can start a lawsuit. A personal injury action against someone for intentionally causing injury must be filed within one (1) year from the injury.

Keep in mind that the time requirement for filing a lawsuit varies depending on who it is you need to sue. Please don’t wait. Call us to find out how long you have and how we can help.

If the responsible insurance company does not make a fair offer to settle your case, it is important that your case be brought into court and if necessary, tried before a jury. Although most cases settle for fair value before going to trial, it is important to always be prepared.