Manhattan Aggressive Driving Accident Lawyer

There is little doubt that almost every motorist has experienced frustration while driving, but sometimes that frustration turns into dangerous behavior. Aggressive driving was a contributing factor in 59 traffic accidents in New York City between January and July 2022. Nine of those accidents occurred in Manhattan.

When a driver engages in aggressive behaviors that lead to an accident resulting in injuries, that motorist has responsibility for damages. If you sustained serious injuries in an accident due to the aggressive driving of another party, a Manhattan aggressive driving accident lawyer could help you recover damages for your injuries.

Understanding Aggressive Driving

Aggressive driving is an umbrella term encompassing a wide range of behaviors. Though the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lumps speeding and aggressive driving into one category of risky behavior, not all speeding is aggressive driving and vice versa. Aggressive driving is any behind-the-wheel behavior that purposefully disregards others’ safety or intends to put another at risk. Examples of behaviors that could qualify are:

  • Tailgating
  • Cutting another motorist off
  • Riding too close to a cyclist or running the cyclist off the road
  • Putting on the brakes or slowing down quickly with the intent to punish another driver
  • Weaving in and out of traffic

Speeding in congested traffic or excessive speeding can also be considered aggressive driving.

Aggressive driving often escalates into road rage. Road rage can be displaying a rude gesture, but it may also be something as dangerous as intentionally ramming another vehicle. According to American Automobile Association Foundation for Traffic Safety research, nearly 80% of surveyed drivers indicated that they had engaged in aggressive driving or road rage within the previous month.

Aggressive Driving and New York Law

New York does not have a law explicitly addressing aggressive behavior. However, the state does have a law defining reckless driving. Vehicle and Traffic Chapter 71, Title 7, Article 33, Section 1212 makes it a misdemeanor to engage in reckless driving.

Reckless driving is any behavior that unreasonably interferes with road use from other drivers, cyclists or pedestrians or unreasonably endangers those users. Aggressive driving is often the same as reckless driving, according to state law.

Knowing How New York Law Impacts Your Case

The legalities in accident cases extend beyond whether drivers are charged with a misdemeanor crime for their driving behaviors. Insurance and personal injury laws determine whether you can file a legal claim and the outcomes of your lawsuit.

New York’s Insurance Law

This state is a no-fault car insurance state. As such, every car owner must carry personal injury protection on all operable vehicles (except motorcycles). PIP coverage pays for medical and rehabilitation costs related to the accident, up to 80% of lost wages and no more than $2,000 per month for up to three years and up to $25 daily for related costs such as household help.

Though N.Y. requires PIP coverage, the law does not necessarily negate legal action for those injured in accidents caused by another’s negligence. If you meet the state’s serious injury threshold, you can file a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages. A serious injury meets one or more of the following criteria:

  • Bone fracture
  • Dismemberment
  • Disfigurement
  • Permanent loss of a body member, organ, system or function
  • Significant reduction in the use of body system or function

If you are disabled for 90 days or more, you also meet the threshold.

The state’s insurance law also allows you to file a personal injury claim if medical expenses and lost earnings exceed your PIP limits. Though your limits may be higher, N.Y. requires a minimum of $50,000 in coverage. It is permissible for you to pursue a legal claim to recover non-economic damages, such as physical pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. A Manhattan aggressive driving accident lawyer can determine whether you have a valid legal claim.

N.Y.’s Personal Injury Statute of Limitations

Another law that impacts whether you can file a lawsuit is the statute of limitations for personal injury cases. The statute of limitations is a strict deadline for taking legal action. The state implements these laws for both criminal and civil cases. Different types of cases have other deadlines.

For most personal injury claims, the deadline is three years from the accident. Three years pass faster than you might realize, especially when you are dealing with the insurance company while also trying to recover from the accident. You may be tempted to wait until you have all your treatments, but it could be too late. Once the deadline passes, your right to file is gone. A Manhattan aggressive driving accident lawyer can help you stay on top of deadlines, but only if you retain one before it’s too late.

New York’s Pure Contributory Fault Law

If you sustained injuries because another driver engaged in aggressive driving that led to an accident, you might be able to recover damages even if you were partially at fault. You must demonstrate that the other driver’s negligent behavior caused or contributed to the accident, resulting in your injuries. When you have proof to substantiate your claim, you have a right to compensation.

The percentage of damage awards you walk away with depends on your portion of the blame. If your actions played a part in the accident, you wouldn’t receive the entire amount. N.Y. imposes a pure contributory fault rule, which means that your damage award is reduced by your degree of fault. If you are 20% responsible, your settlement distribution is 20% less than the total amount. Likewise, if you are 80% liable, you receive the awarded damages minus 80%.

Understanding What an Aggressive Driving Accident Lawyer Does

It may seem like you have a straightforward case, particularly if the other driver was charged with reckless driving. However, you need an in-depth understanding of relevant laws and the legal system to obtain the most favorable outcome. You also need to know how to deal with defense attorneys and their tactics to reduce their clients’ financial responsibilities.

At Cellino Law, we walk you through the legal landscape from the time you first contact us to the moment your case is settled. We offer everyone a free case review, providing advice on feasible options. If you choose to retain services, our Manhattan aggressive driving accident lawyers also provide the following:

  • Gathering evidence, including witness statements and physician and therapist reports
  • Calculating economic and non-economic losses
  • Completing and filing legal documents, including your petition to file
  • Communicating with the defense
  • Handling pre-trial negotiations

Most personal injury cases reach a pre-trial settlement agreement. However, your attorney won’t urge you to settle for less than you deserve. If the defense does not agree to fair compensation, your attorney will not hesitate to proceed to court. If your case goes in front of a judge and jury, your lawyer is there to fight for your rights and a just damage award.

Getting Help From a Manhattan Aggressive Driving Accident Lawyer You Can Trust

When you need a personal injury attorney who listens to you and provides you with individual and personal attention, you can trust Cellino Law to help. We have the experience and knowledge needed, with a proven courtroom track record, to handle aggressive driving accident cases. Contact us for a free case review. We don’t get paid until we win your case.

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  • Cellino Law and more specifically my attorney, Gregory V. Pajak, Managing Attorney, and as a whole the Cellino Law Firm and its organization. This is by far one of the most professional law firms and attorney I have ever engaged with and retained in my 35 years. The level of professionalism goes beyond words, the care and constant engagement with me as the client was touching. I was never ever just treated as simply a CASE with potentially a significant dollar number attached to my file. I was engaged regularly, Tracey (Ass’t) and Greg always made sure to remain constant, as well as consistent in overseeing that my case was handled properly and that it did matter in many ways - ensuring that the end result(s) would be fair and reasonable to my case/injury. The regular follow-up calls were very satisfying, knowing that you’re involved in your case matters significantly AND always. One of my main items to recognize Cellino Law and Gregory is that whenever I called, I was able to get through to speak directly to my Lawyer and he would answer any if not all of my questions in a very professional and genuinely caring manner. I always felt cared for and protected legally and more importantly, I was made feel as a human being that was being cared for and always keeping me abreast of all matters connected to the case. There was never a point I felt let down, on the contrary -the level of service was “STELLAR”. Greg is the consummate professional, a ‘role model’, if you will, for what other attorneys should strive to become when dealing with their clients.

    Anthony

  • Thank you for your help in settling the case of my father's accident. I could always count on you to answer my questions honestly and in terms I could understand. If all lawyers at Cellino Law are like you, I understand why they are an A-1 law firm.

    Bedner

  • Joe and I just wanted to send you this note thanking you for the professional way you handled our lawsuit. Your kindness was extremely appreciated in a very difficult time. When we found out the people that caused the accident had no insurance, we thought our chances of receiving any settlement was nonexistent. Once we met with you and released you were able to help us our minds were put at ease. Your aggressive manner of handling the case exceeded our expectations. Please feel free to use us as a reference. Thank you so much and best wishes,

    Danielle and Joe

  • Cellino Law was a great company to work with. From the beginning they came out and met with my uncle and myself and assured us that everything would be taken care of from beginning to end our lawyer state and constant contact with us to make sure that everything would go smoothly and it did. I would definitely recommend anybody to go to Cellino Law for whatever help they need. And specifically please ask for the lawyer that we had Mr. Alan Silverstein. He was amazing and his staff was always attentive. Please go with them for your next law needs.

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  • Choosing the right attorney to represent you after an accident can make all the difference. This is no cliche. I recently experienced these words to live by first hand. After a tractor trailer rear ended me at high speed in 2017 I retained Allan Silverstein to handle my case. I quickly realized that bringing a lawsuit rapidly snowballs into a mountain of details that can make or break your results. Documents, case histories, doctor visits, bills, and lots of phone calls all need to be accurately kept track of if a successful outcome it to be attained. To complicate matters I reside in New York and the incident took place in New Jersey. Luckily, Allan was licensed in multiple states. I was fortunate to find Allan to handle this matter from the New York area. Armed with an accurate account of the facts Allan went to work on the difficult job of negotiating with the defending insurance company as well as my no fault carrier in order to obtain the best possible outcome for my set of circumstances. In a lawsuit communication is key and and events can be of a timely nature. Allan never failed to return my calls - usually the same day! He fought skillfully and respectfully to get me the best possible settlement. He is easy to deal with and a likeable down to earth guy. He always listened with compassion and respect to my issues. He guided me with objective understanding as well as a realistic analysis of the merits of my case. When we finally settled Allan got me a fair agreement beyond my expectations and negotiated with my doctors to make sure all my bills were paid. It was a great experience having Allan represent me. Quality work in any aspect of life is hard to find. Quality is what I got with Allan Silverstein. I highly recommend him if you find yourself in need of a personal injury attorney.

    Theodore