The Law Offices of Lawrence B. Saftler 646.865.0797
New York's Personal Injury Attorney

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Legal Blog of Attorney Lawrence B. Saftler

Bus Accident on 95 Killls 13, Many Other Injured

By admin on March 12, 2011

In a highly publicized accident, a bus was caused to flip over and slide into a sign post, shearing off part of the bus and killing and seriously injuring many passengers. It was reported by Jonathan Dienst on NBC that a witness reportedly saw a tractor trailer cut off the bus, but that is under investigation. While the cause of the accident will take time and effort to determine, video on the highway will help in the investigation.

While the initial shock and force of the tragedy is paramount, as well as the imortance of proper medical care for those suffering from their injuries, the future legal needs will be as important for the survivors and injured victims. It is necessary to make sure no fault documents are filed promptly to make sure the medical bills are covered through the appropriate insurance carrier, that of the bus company. Further, estates must be administered to allow for the claims of those who lost loved ones to proceed. Medical necessities go first, but oversight of care as well as documentation is important to future recovery.

At the Saftler Law Firm, we stand ready to assist anyone injured in an accident or who lost loved ones from an accident. It is important to know the attorney you hire is in a position to be of utmost help, with the caring and understanding, each person’s case needs. We never like to hear of accidents like this happening, which clearly are preventable by careful and cautious driving, but when such accidents strike, we are here to help. We wish those involved who survived a speedy recovery as well as our sorrow for those who lost loved ones.

Complex Fractures, Comminuted Fractures, Spiral Fractures, Fractures Requiring Surgery

By admin on March 7, 2011

In personal injury law, an attorney in this area must know his medicine as he knows the law. If the facts support your case according to the law so that you should be compensated, the attorney you want handling your case should be knowledgeable about your injury as well as the law. You should be compensated according to the seriousness of your injury or injuries. The more serious injury should net a higher settlement or award than a lesser injury, but not always.  Your attorney needs to know more about your injury in order to maximize your claim and know it’s true value. If you have a simple fracture of the arm as opposed to a complex fracture such as a comminuted or spiral fracture, where surgery is required, this needs to be discovered and presented either to the trier of fact at trial or presented to the insurance carrier for the defendants during the pre-trial phase of your claim. Further, the size of your claim cannot be determined by the mere fact that you have suffered some particular type of injury, since your attorney needs to judge the liability against the injury to determine the fair value of your case. For example, if the plaintiff or the injured victim, is also responsible for his own injury, in addition to that of the defendant. This is called comparative negligence and can reduce the size of an award by the percentage of negligence a plaintiffis at fault for in his own accident. There is no one single number that fits any one particular injury. However, the importance of knowing the seriousness of a particular injury is one ingredient into determining the size and value of your case, that being damages. The general rule is that the greater the injury, the greater the damages, but as indicated in this blog, not always the case. This is why an injured victim should not just seek out any legal help they find, but attorneys with the requisite skill, experience and knowledge your case needs.
While not doctors, the Saftler Law Firm has had 30 plus years of scouring medical records of prior injury victims to become knowledgeable about injuries, just as they are knowledgeable about the law. Determining the severity of your injury is an important factor in obtaining the fair value for you case. Inquire to learn how we can help you obtain the highest award for your particular injury.

Witnesses to an Accident – Identify Yourself as a Witness, Obtain Witnesses if a Victim

By admin on March 3, 2011

In the years I have been practicing as an attorney devoted purely to the pursuit of seeking a recovery for injured individuals through the wrongdoing of others, one of issues not necessarily required, but considerably helpful is that of finding an unbiased, disinterested witness. Think of it from the standpoint later on when a jury or the insurance carrier for the other side will reflect upon your story to determine the veracity of what you are claiming. You can succeed without such a witness or witnesses, but to be successful, it is important, if you are an accident victim, to try to obtain the identity, along with addresses and phone numbers, if possible, of any witnesses to the event. Having such witness at the time of the trial, showing a statement to the other side, deposing that witness before trial, goes a long way to being successful to prove what you say happened, happened the way you said it did. It is the rare case that the party you are suing agrees with your version of how an accident happened, let alone agrees with your view of who’ fault the accident was.

If you witness an accident, while not your duty to speak up and identify yourself, it is the right thing to do in to help your fellow citizen in a time of need. If the shoe was on the other foot and it was you that was the injured party, you would be the one who would be helped, so consider your moral responsibility. As stated before, you can succeed without a third party witness with no stake in the outcome, but it certainly helps.

It is difficult for someone who is injured, while in the moment, to be cognizant of what will help them later during the pursuit of a claim, but an accident can happen to you, someone you love or a good friend or colleague. Being aware of what helps at the moment of an accident can help someone you know in the future and it would help your attorney in helping you or the person you are concerned for.

Van Accident on New York Thruway – Who is Responsible?

By admin on September 20, 2010

Recent news revealed a horrible accident which occurred on the New York State Thruway -On Saturday, September 18th, 2010, the New York Times reported: “Six Killed in Crash on New York State Thruway”.
   The details, while still under investigation, reported that a tractor- trailer may have been involved in hitting the van. However, the evidence,  according to police sources, indicate that a rear tire detreaded and the vehicle rolled over, therefore, it was a single vehicle accident.
   Who would be responsible for this terrible accident is the subject of this blog. While the owner and driver of the vehicle are the most obvious responsible parties, other parties may exist in the form of the vehicle manufacturer (for rollover propensity of the vehicle and/or roofcrush), the tire manufacturer (for tire detreading), the State (possible roadway defects) or even the most recent inspection station for allowing the vehicle to pass inspection (possible negligence). In this case, the vehicle was also on a sponsored trip by the church, possibly rendering the church responsible for their negligent oversight.
  In cases such as this, it is important to have the scene and the vehicle inspected as soon as possible, without disposing of the vehicle for future review. The families of the deceased victims of this accident should find legal help as soon as possible to institute estate proceedings to move on what needs to be done relating to this accident. It is also important that the victims of this terrible accident obtain the legal help with the know how and sophistication to deal with the high potential regarding an accident of this magnitude. While it would be simple to place the blame on the driver, those effected should be advised that it is not necessarily the only blame that exists.

Falling From Balconies – How One Tragedy Makes Everyone Look Up – NYC Balcony Liability

By admin on July 7, 2010

330 East 39th Street
330 East 39th Street

 In March, 2009, 24-year-old Connor Donohue fell from a balcony to his death at 330 East 39th Street in the Murray Hill section of Mnahattan.  The Department of Buildings has since ordered an engineering report, saying that he may have fallen due to damaged fencing around the unit’s balcony.  Following the accident, the fencing and post of the railing appeared loose and may have been damaged prior to the incident.  Pan Am Equities, the building’s management company, had not filed inspection reports with the Department of Buildings in ten years.  They are required to do so every five years and were thus fined $11,000. Department of Buildings inspectors have found about 800 building owners, in addition to Pan Am Equities, that have failed to file reports on the safety of their balconies. 

But how do you stay safe on your own balcony?  A proper inspection involves pulling out bricks and even some drilling.  As an individual tenant, you can’t exactly order scaffolding put outside your apartment, and an engineering report from your management company.  You can ask if the proper inspections have been conducted, though.  And be vigilent, as well.  Don’t lean on a balcony railing you’re unsure of.  Of course, if a tragedy of this nature occurs, the family should obtain the appropriate legal advice to go after those responsible.

Bike Riders Beware – Don’t Get Taken For A Ride – Bicycle Accidents and the Law

By admin on June 17, 2010

New York City can be a dangerous place to ride a bike. You must learn to ride smart, wear a helmet, and of course, follow all the traffic rules. Under Traffic Law Section 1231, “Every person riding a bicycle …upon a roadway shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle.” But even if you do follow all the traffic rules, you could still wind up suffering an injury. What do you do then?

First, always wait for the police to respond to the accident scene and take an official report. Your injuries may not appear until later and it is best to have their cause documented with the correct authorities. Make sure the report is accurate, including your information as a cyclist. Get medical attention if necessary. Your injuries should be documented in any type of personal injury matter. Medical records should be generated and photos taken of the scene, the injuries, and your bike.  Do not have your bike repaired until you can prove the impact and manner of the accident, if necessary. The damage to your property is evidence of the  accident caused by an at-fault driver during your accident or if your bike hit a pothole or other defect in the roadway or sidewalk or path.

Next, look to an experienced attorney who can help you determine whether the driver was at fault,  or there is some other type of liability for your accident and whether or not you bear any responsibility for causing your accident. Many times,  it can be some other cause, such as a pothole or defect in the street or sidewalk  or some type of construction. Insurance companies who represent drivers have examiners who are paid to limit their company’s liability. Their job is to make sure you get as little money possible. Do not communicate with an insurance company before consulting with an attorney!

As always, be careful and stay safe. Enjoy the ride – don’t get taken for one.

New York Construction Accidents – New York Favors Workers

By admin on May 28, 2010

In New York, workers are protected and benefit from laws surrounding accidents at worksites, more so than many other states. While a worker is protected from losses, medically or by lost wages through workers compensation, it is not an exclusive remedy if there is a third party a worker at a construction site can sue, such as a general contractor, owner or other third party.
In serious accident cases, the sums acquired through a third party lawsuit can be enriching to the injured worker, even though reimbursement must be made to the workers compensation carrier when resolving the underlying third party claim. Further, the worker has the strong worker protection laws that is in place in New York to see that the worker does get the necessary compensation he is entitled to as a result of his accident. It is important for workers and attorneys from out of state to know the importance of seeking the proper legal counsel to see if there is a remedy for the case someone has.
The Saftler Law Firm is a firm that prides itself on the knowledge and capabilities it has with reference to construction accident cases. Mr. Saftler has been a past speaker to the New York State Bar Association relating to construction accidents and the protections afforded workers from falls, height related accidents where equipment falls on an employee or a worker falls from a height and other accidents at worksites. The firm has resolved numerous cases and have tried many such cases to successful conclusion, all to the satisfaction of our many clients. Call and schedule an appointment without charge or obligation to see if you have a case we can help you with. Attorneys should freely call for advice for cases for their clients which The Saftler law Firm can assist with as it does with numerous attorneys in the New York metropolitan area.

Not Happy With Your Present Attorney? Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

By admin on May 13, 2010

You should be happy and confident with whomever you choose to represent you. Communication with your attorney is one of the most important aspects of representation. Hopefully, your trust in your attorney’s opinion will allow your attorney to help guide you with important decisions throughout any litigation or legal matter. We, at The Saftler Law Firm,  have taken over many cases from other attorneys where the client becomes unhappy with their prior attorney  for their simple failure to respond to their phone calls. Making an appointment to see your attorney so that you can be updated with what’s going on should be routine.  Our office prides itself on responding to all calls within 24 hours and seeing clients as, if and when called upon. We never shy away at giving answers on what is the present status of a case.

Whatever the reason for your unhappiness with your present attorney, you have a right to choose new counsel at anytime without consequence to you or your case. In a personal injury matter, your agreement on fees remains the same and the outgoing attorney obtains an attorney’s lien for the share of work he did on your file. What’s most important is that you have the attorney you want working for you with the confidence and competence you want working for you as well. The contingency fee arrangement remains the same and your interests are otherwise protected by your new attorney.

 At the Saftler Law Firm, we are prepared to answer any questions or issues you have relating to your matter, whether new or not. While we prefer to take a matter from it’s inception, we examine each case based on it’s individual merits and decide accordingly. While we can’t take them all, we do want to make you happy if we do take your case.

A Champion of Victims’ Rights

By admin on April 30, 2010

Lawrence Saftler worked diligently to protect the rights, interests and privacy of Sherr-Una Booker. Ms. Booker is an alleged victim of domestic violence by New York Governor David Paterson’s former assistant, David Johnson.  She is also the woman centered in an investigation by the Attorney General’s office into alleged witness tampering and potential abuse of power by Governor Paterson and The State Police, in seeking to influence her from prosecuting her claims against the Governor’s trusted employee, Mr. Johnson.  The case was originally reported by David Kocieniewski of the New York Times, setting off the investigation, ultimately leading the Governor not to seek re-election and causing numerous State employees working under Governor Paterson to resign.  The investigation can be followed in the New York Times articles, found here, here, here, and here.

Lawrence Saftler has been a constant champion of  innocent victims’ rights, working on behalf of accident, malpractice, assault, wrongful arrest, wrongful imprisonment and other wrongdoing causing injury or harm to his clients.  His firm, The Saftler Law Firm, focuses its practice on seeking compensation for those who suffer injuries and financial loss because of the negligence, malfeasance or malintent of others.  These victims need a champion of their legal rights and Mr. Saftler has come to their aid time and time again over his 30 plus year career.  Ms. Booker, a former client, sought Mr. Saftler’s advice , representation  and assistance in this delicate and important matter.

More news coverage of the Attorney General’s investigation, with interviews of Mr. Saftler, can be seen on NBC and on ABC.

Ice is Slippery and So is Snow, Watch Your Step!

By admin on February 12, 2010

In New York City, property owners are liable for all defects on the sidewalks, except for sidewalks abutting one, two and three family residences. This covers snow and ice. Liability shifts responsibility to property owners for removal of much of the snow and ice we find ourselves surrounded by today. Under some circumstances, though, the City of New York is still responsible for maintaining our public walk ways and for snow removal. After a snowfall as significant as the one we had on February 10, 2010, we need to know who we can go after after an unfortunate slip and fall occurs.

Hopefully, you will remain safe in getting around. However, if you fall and get injured, that’s where we come in. It is always wise to exercise caution when walking in these conditions. Slow down and take smaller steps, focus your attention on walking, wear rubber soles that have good traction. But you as a pedestrian are not the only one who can help to limit the number of winter weather-related slip and falls. New York City Administrative Code Section 16-123 charges that “every owner, lessee, tenant, occupant, or other person, having charge of any building or lot of ground in the city, abutting upon any street where the sidewalk is paved, shall, within four hours after the snow ceases to fall… remove the snow or ice.” This, however, does not apply during the hours of 9 p.m. and 7 a.m; and the four hour window for removal does not begin until 7 a.m. on any given day. Also, in determining liability, the court will look at how much time passes between the time snowfall ceases and the time an accident occurs. There is a generally recognized period of time, 48 hours, which must lapse between the two, in order for liability to be found. These rules have been set by the courts in prior cases. There are always exceptions and every case is different.

Most importantly, as a pedestrian, you must be careful. Avoid ice and snow-covered sidewalks where you can. But if you do slip and fall, contact The Saftler Law Firm and learn exactly what you’re entitled to. After discussing the facts of the incident and the nature of your injury with you, we will be able to determine whether you may be entitled to financial compensation.

Enjoy the weather, New York. You can complain about it all you like, but if you live on the planet Earth, weather is a factor you have to get used to!

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Do not hesitate to contact personal injury lawyer Lawrence Saftler if you have suffered from a personal injury in the Manhattan or greater New York City area.

Personal Injury New York
275 Madison Ave.,
Suite 1605
New York, New York 10016