Impact of COVID-19 on Personal Injury Cases in NJ

Though businesses and life, in general, are opening up lately, COVID-19 will have long-lasting effects on the courts and all the entities involved in a personal injury claim.

Impact of COVID-19 on Personal Injury Cases in NJIf you’ve been harmed in a car accident, in a slip and fall in a grocery store, or in any other circumstance where some other person or entity caused you injury on their property or anywhere else in New Jersey, you have the right to seek compensation for the medical bills, pain, and suffering that you endure by filing a personal injury claim.

There are some aspects of the courts, insurance companies, and businesses that have changed because of COVID-19, and that you need to be aware of under the unique circumstances. Know what to expect as you pursue your claim.

Is There a Limitation on When I Can File My Claim?

First and foremost, you need to be aware that the clock is ticking. You do not have unlimited time to file your claim.

Every state in the U.S. places a limit on how much time you can take to file a personal injury claim. The law that places this limit is known as a statute of limitations.

New Jersey’s statute of limitations for personal injury cases allows a person injured by a person or an entity two years to file a claim. Generally, the clock on that claim starts ticking on the day of the accident.

Though you may want to wait to collect all the doctor’s bills that accrue because of your injury, you must also keep in mind that if you don’t get your claim filed before two years is up, the courts will probably refuse to put your case on the docket. Your ability to gain compensation for your pain, suffering, and lost wages will, most likely, be lost unless there is an unusual circumstance that the court believes extends the deadline.

Don’t wait to file your claim because of COVID-19.

And don’t wait to file your claim because you feel that you don’t have enough money to pay legal fees. Remember that personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis. They only get paid if the case is won.

My Personal Injury Case

Even during the height of the pandemic, when people mostly stayed home, there were still car accidents and slips and falls at grocery stores. Now that the economy and businesses are opening up, it’s unfortunate but likely that even more of these incidents will occur.

Pandemic or not, if you’ve suffered an injury that is not your fault, there are a few principles that you should follow:

·        Take pictures early on and steadily thereafter.

·        Keep a pain log daily that will document all that you endured.

·        Get a medical evaluation immediately. Go to all your medical appointments.

·        Documentation is key. It greatly improves your odds of getting compensation.

·        Never speak with any person from the insurance company, including adjusters, before speaking to a personal injury lawyer.

How Does the Pandemic Affect My Case?

How Does the Pandemic Affect My Case?Even though restrictions have eased, COVID-19 is still having a profound effect on personal injury claims in four broad areas:

Insurance companies.

They are worried about lower profits because of the pandemic, and they are aggressive in reducing settlements. They may try to take advantage of the fact that people might be more desperate because of lost wages due to the pandemic, and they are likely to low-ball their first offer. People should not just leap at the first offer from an insurer because it probably won’t reimburse them for medical bills, pain and suffering. As both sides dig in, more personal injury cases may wind up before a judge than usual.

Businesses.

Due to COVID-19, more businesses than usual are filing for bankruptcy. This means that compensation you might have been able to gain from them will be reduced to pennies on the dollar.

Courts.

New Jersey courts shut down and moved all proceedings onto technology platforms like Zoom because of COVID-19. Courts in New Jersey began to open up on June 22, 2021, but many hearings and procedures are still being conducted online. This means that personal injury cases might not be settled as quickly as they would in normal circumstances. Most PI cases get settled before trial, but many cases get at least one hearing in court, at least before a settlement is reached. Expect delays in getting your case settled.

Uninsured drivers.

Due to financial hardship during COVID-19, some drivers may have stopped paying for car insurance. This may complicate things for the victim of a car accident since they can’t be compensated by the driver’s insurance company. The victim may need to pursue compensation via the uninsured/underinsured driver policy through their insurer. A victim needs to be mindful that, in this instance, their insurer becomes an adversary and will resist paying. This kind of claim may be highly contested; the help of an attorney may be essential.

Don´t hesitate in contacting our Personal Injury Lawyers for a Free Consultation

If you feel that you have the potential for a personal injury claim, please call Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson today. Our capable personal injury lawyers can fight for you with the insurance companies trying to take advantage of people in desperate straits because of COVID-19. You will need the guidance of experienced attorneys to get the best possible settlement for you and your family.

You can reach us at 609-528-2596 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free and confidential consultation to discuss your individual needs and concerns.

Auto Accidents in Company Vehicles: Who is Responsible?

Injured in a work-related car accident? Contact our Trenton, East Brunswick, Bensalem, or Philadelphia Offices to Collect Fair Compensation for Your Medical Expenses

Auto accidents in company vehicles: Who is responsible?If you have been in a car accident and you were driving a company vehicle or driving for work, you may wonder if your employer is responsible for compensating you for damages or injury. While most accidents occur on personal time and involve only you and the other involved driver, an accident that involves work-related transportation complicates matters. Read on to learn more about whose responsibility it is to cover expenses in the case of a work-related car accident, so you can be sure you receive the treatment and full compensation you deserve.

Injured Traveling to and from the job

If you are traveling to or from work and are involved in an auto accident, the generally held precedent is that your personal insurance must cover expenses and damages. This only applies if you are at fault for causing the accident; if another driver is at fault, their insurance is responsible for covering all damages and medical expenses. If this is the case, it is recommended that you hire a personal injury attorney to handle your claim and support you in receiving full recovery for your losses and out-of-pocket expenses during the recovery process. The one exception to this precedent is the case in which your automobile is required for your work, and as such, as soon as you begin the commute to work, you are on the job. If you were at fault for an accident on the way to or from work but your car is a required tool for your job, contact a member of our team today to learn who may be liable for covering accident expenses and options for your next steps.

Hurt Driving a Company Vehicle

If you were driving a company vehicle and were at fault for an accident, it is likely that the company’s insurance will cover all expenses, and your personal insurance will not be affected. If you are injured in the accident, it is imperative to keep records of all medical expenses paid out of pocket to submit to the company’s insurance for reimbursement.

Driving a company vehicleThere are a few exceptions to this. If you were driving the company car but you were driving for personal reasons, your company can denounce liability and claim your full responsibility in the case of an accident. A company can also denounce liability if you were partaking in illegal activity in the car or an illicit activity such as consuming alcohol before getting behind the wheel of their company property. If your company claims nonliability for an accident while you were driving their vehicle and you can claim that the company was negligent in properly maintaining the car, this is very serious and you may be able to recover damages. For this type of claim, you will definitely want the support of an accident lawyer.

Again, if you are in an accident with someone else who is driving their company’s car and are not at fault for the accident, you need not worry. Focus on recovering in body and mind after filing a claim with your personal insurance company, keep close records of any immediate out-of-pocket expenses incurred, and seek the support of a personal injury attorney. You can expect to recover all the damages and expenses caused by the accident.

Injured in an Accident Using your Personal Vehicle for Work

If you are at fault for an accident while driving your own vehicle, but your business driving was directly related to work, your company may be liable to cover damages. As noted above, this generally does not apply to the commute to and from work; however, running errands for work at the direct request of your company could mean company liability for any accident that takes place during that time.

If you have been involved in an automobile accident, your safety and health are first priority. Seek medical attention immediately if you are injured in a collision, even if the pain isn’t immediately evident. Because of the stress response of the body to a trigger such as a collision, it may be hours or even days before cortisol and other stress hormones lower, inflammation subsides, and your body is able to show you where it may have been thrown out of alignment. Contact a personal injury or accident lawyer to support you in the process of recovering the full extent of damages you deserve for the accident.

Contact a Mercer County Commercial Car Accident Injury Attorney to ensure a fair outcome in your case

At Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson, our accident attorneys are experienced in facilitating insurance claims between our clients across in Trenton office, Princeton, Lawrence, Hamilton, New Brunswick and across Mercer County. and the companies whose vehicles they were driving when the auto accident occurred.

Our direct approach is intentionally designed to ensure that our clients receive the full representation and financial compensation they are merited, so they can recover from the accident and get back to work healthy and well.

To meet with an experienced member of our firm today regarding your accident, please call (609) 528-2596 or go online to schedule a free, no-risk consultation with a personal injury lawyer.