Binghamton Personal Injury Attorney
49 Court Street Suite 260
Binghamton, NY 13901
With its rural charm and beautiful scenery, Binghamton is a great place to raise a family, work, or attend college. However, it is also a place where severe injuries can happen in many ways. Among the three leading causes of death related to unintentional injury in our state are motor vehicle accidents, falls, and poisoning. More than 1.3 million people suffer unintentional injuries in this state each year, with many requiring emergency department visits or hospitalization.
If you’ve been injured in an accident that was the result of someone else’s careless or reckless actions, you can obtain compensation for the expenses and impacts to your quality of life that the injury caused. The process for doing so is a personal injury lawsuit, which is a legal claim filed in civil court. Your claim must be filed within three years in most cases.
A Binghamton personal injury lawyer from Finkelstein & Partners can help you understand the personal injury lawsuit process and can provide guidance and assistance in your case. We are one of the largest personal injury firms in the U.S. and have spent decades fighting for the rights of the injured in New York.
What Accident and Injury Victims Do You Represent in Binghamton?
Personal injury is a rather wide umbrella that encompasses many types of accidents and injuries.
Some of the types we can assist you with include:
- Motor vehicle accidents: Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death and injury in New York and one of the main causes of some of the most catastrophic injuries an individual can suffer, including traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. We represent clients who have been injured in all types of motor vehicle accidents, including those that involve passenger car accidents, commercial trucks, motorcycles, buses, trains, rideshares, taxis, pedestrians, bicyclists, aircraft, or watercraft.
- Nursing home negligence: The federal nursing home reform law provides rights to nursing home residents, including the right to basic needs such as food, water, and heat, as well as the rights to medical care, the right to be involved in one’s care and to make one’s own decisions, and the right to be treated with respect and dignity. Unfortunately, many residents incur abuse or neglect in a nursing home setting that can cause injury and create expenses and psychological impacts. If your loved one was injured in a Binghamton nursing home due to abuse, neglect, or other types of negligence, you can hold the staff that provided negligent care and the facility liable.
- Slip and fall/ premises liability: Slip and fall accidents are a type of premises liability case resulting from an individual slipping or tripping on debris, clutter, loose or worn flooring, and falling. This is the most common type of premises liability, with other types including swimming pool accidents, elevator or escalator accidents, fires, flooding, or negligent security. Premises liability holds the owner of a commercial or private property or the agency managing a public property financially responsible if they fail to mitigate property hazards that can cause injuries to guests and to warn guests of existing hazards.
- Defective products: Recently, Finkelstein & Partners secured a $34 million judgment in favor of a client that had to undergo a mastectomy after a defective drug caused her to have breast cancer. Product liability places the responsibility for ensuring that products such as drugs, food, auto parts, appliances, and children’s toys are safe for consumers when used according to labeled instructions. These cases are often large and complex, involving many claimants who suffered injury from the defect.
- Medical malpractice: Medical malpractice refers to medical negligence that violates the standard of care provided by reasonable doctors in similar circumstances. Medical malpractice includes failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis, misreading or ignoring lab results, surgical errors such as unnecessary surgery or performing surgery on the wrong site or the wrong patient, improper medication or dosage, birth injuries, failing to provide adequate aftercare or premature discharge, failing to provide discharge instructions, not taking a complete patient history or disregarding information provided in that patient history, failing to order necessary testing, or failing to recognize symptoms.
- Work-related accidents: Most injuries arising from accidents in the workplace are compensated through the New York State Workers’ Compensation Program. Workers’ compensation is an insurance policy that most employers in the state must provide for their employees. It provides medical treatment and wage loss benefits regardless of who was at fault for the accident. In limited circumstances, an injured worker can seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. These cases involve either a failure on the employer’s part to provide workers’ comp coverage as required by law or the at-fault party in the accident was a third party (not your employer or your coworker). Cases involving railroad workers and other federal employees are often compensated through the Federal Employers Liability Act.
- Federal benefits: Finkelstein & Partners is happy to assist Binghamton clients with applying for or appealing a decision for federal benefits such as the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, Social Security Disability Insurance, or Veterans Administration Disability.
- Traumatic brain injuries: Traumatic brain injuries are one of the most difficult types of injuries to deal with as they often result in permanent deficits. While the brain is a vital organ that is responsible for controlling the function of the rest of the body, it only has a limited ability to heal after injury. Deficits depend on the severity and location of the injury. Some common deficits caused by brain injuries include memory loss, loss of the ability to control one’s behavior or emotions, inability to move in a balanced or coordinated manner, and difficulty speaking or understanding spoken language.
- Dog bites: Some states hold that a dog owner is liable if his or her dog bites someone and causes an injury regardless of whether he or she had any previous knowledge that the animal was capable of being vicious. This is known as strict liability. Other states, however, hold that the owner is only liable if he or she had this knowledge that the dog was capable of biting. This is known as the “one bite rule.” New York’s dog bite laws are a hybrid of these two standards, with owners being strictly liable for medical expenses only if their dog bites someone. To obtain damages for other expenses or impacts requires the claimant to prove that the dog owner was negligent.
- Wrongful death: Death is the absolute worst outcome in any type of accident and often results in extraordinary financial and psychological impacts for the family members of the deceased. If you have lost a loved one as the result of someone else’s carelessness or recklessness, you can seek compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit. Like a personal injury claim, a wrongful death lawsuit is a legal claim filed in civil court. Wrongful death lawsuits must be filed within two years after the date of death. The case is filed by a personal representative of the deceased’s estate on behalf of beneficiaries. Some of the expenses and impacts that are compensated through wrongful death claims include the costs of treating the deceased’s final injury, the expenses of a funeral service and burial or cremation, loss of wages and benefits that the deceased was reasonably expected to earn through the course of his or her career if he or she had survived, the value of support and services that the deceased provided to his or her family members, the value of parental nurturing, care, and guidance provided by the deceased to his or her surviving children, conscious pain and suffering that the deceased endured between the time of his or her final injury and the time of death, and 9 percent interest on the damage award that is calculated from the date of death.
How Do We Prove Liability in a Personal Injury Case?
The ability to prove liability, also known as legal responsibility, is one of the cornerstones of your case.
Your lawyer can prove liability by establishing:
- The at-fault party owed you a duty of care. The duty of care refers to the way a reasonable person would have responded in similar circumstances. For example, the duty of care that one driver owes to other users of the roadways in Binghamton would be to operate his or her motor vehicle safely and legally.
- There was a breach in the duty of care. The breach is the actions that the at-fault party took that were contrary to the duty of care that was owed. Using the car accident example, some common breaches in the duty of care that a driver owes to others include impaired driving, drowsy driving, speeding, or failure to yield the right-of-way.
- The breach caused the accident which resulted in the claimant’s injuries and subsequent financial and psychological impacts.
What Damages Can I Recover in a Binghamton Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Damage means a payment to compensate for harm. New York allows the recovery of both economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages refer to compensation for the out-of-pocket expenses you have incurred because of your accident, such as:
- Medical expenses, including the cost of emergency treatment at the scene or in the emergency department, transport to the hospital, diagnostic testing, hospitalization, physician and surgical services, prescription medication, physical therapy and rehabilitation, and the provision of assistive devices such as crutches or a wheelchair.
- Lost wages if you are too injured to work or must miss work to attend an injury-related medical appointment.
- Loss of future earning capacity if your injury results in a disability and you can no longer work or earn as much as you did before the accident.
- Property damage, such as the cost of repairing or replacing the vehicle you were driving in a motor vehicle accident.
Non-economic damages refer to compensation that you obtain for the impacts your injury has had on your quality of life. Often, serious injuries prevent an individual from working, living independently, or participating in activities he or she previously enjoyed. Instead, they’re dealing with the pain of the injury and the treatments required to recover from it. This compensation is often referred to as pain and suffering damages, as compensates the injured person for physical and emotional injuries.
What if I Can’t Afford an Attorney?
Many individuals are tempted to represent themselves in their personal injury claim over fear that they can’t afford the services of an attorney. Unfortunately, this often leads to confusion and difficulty, as the legal process of obtaining compensation for your injuries is a complex one that very much requires legal education and training that those who aren’t attorneys cannot be expected to know.
The Binghamton personal injury lawyers from Finkelstein & Partners are pleased to provide two services aimed at ensuring that anyone in Binghamton who needs our services can access them without an upfront financial investment.
Those services include:
- A free case evaluation. This no-obligation evaluation is time with an attorney where you can obtain answers to your legal questions and learn more about the firm and the legal options that are available for you.
- A contingency fee payment arrangement. This means that you owe nothing in attorney fees for your lawyer’s services until there has been a successful outcome in your case.
Our Binghamton Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help
If you’ve been injured in any sort of accident that was caused by someone else’s careless or reckless actions, let our experienced Binghamton personal injury lawyers help you understand your legal options. In the past fifty years, we have helped thousands of clients to obtain the compensation they need to assist with their physical and psychological recovery. Contact Finkelstein & Partners online or call us at (607) 763-1793 for your free case evaluation today.