After an accident injured my husband what does he do about lost wages? 2 Answers as of April 22, 2011

My husband has been off work because of injuries since March, when he was hit by another car while walking back to his car after paying for gas at a local gas station. In these type of cases how much money would one be entitled to for pain and suffering? He is getting some of his wages back from his insurance, but we want to get the remaining portion from the other drivers insurance.

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Law Office of William R. Falcone, Esq.
Law Office of William R. Falcone, Esq. | William R. Falcone
In NY you are entitled to no-fault benefits from your insurance company. That includes medical expenses and 80 percent of lost wages up to 50,000 dollars. That is referred to as basic economic loss. You can not recover basic economic loss from a third party regardless of fault. Hence the term no-fault benefits. One other caveat is that most workers are covered by NY disability insurance benefits from their employer which is primary for lost wages incurred while injured off the job. So that coverage will pay 50 percent of lost wages incurred after the first 7 days of disability subject to a weekly max benefit cap and a 26 week limit. The no-fault auto policy picks up the full 80 percent for the first 7 days, then they also pay the 30 percent or more difference that disability limits do not cover to get you to 80 percent until you exhaust the 26 weeks. After that, no-fault covers the full 80 percent. As to pain and suffering. That is only recoverable from the responsible party's insurance company if you can prove that a serious injury was sustained. A serious injury is defined by the statute in different categories including fractures, disfigurements, disabilities longer than 90 days, permanent loss of use, and significant limitations. These terms are the subject of many cases that have further determined what a serious injury is. The bottom line is that you are not entitled to pain and suffering or other non economic losses in a NY auto accident without being able to demonstrate a serious injury. Having a lawyer represent you in doing so is most important, as insurance companies are skilled at setting up a defense to serious injury claims. I hope this helps answer your question, but still recommend that you consult with an attorney who can better advise you on your specific set of facts.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 4/22/2011
Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
How much of a recovery for pain and suffering will depend upon how bad his injuries are and, from what you say, they sound pretty bad. In order to collect he must be unable to work and otherwise disabled or being treated for at least 90 of the first 180 days after an accident. It sounds like he'll have that easily, so he's past the threshhold of being covered by insurance. He should see a personal injury lawyer and have them pursue the matter for him. This sounds like a valuable case, so almost any lawyer you see will be interested in taking it. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 4/22/2011
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