If you sustain an injury in a motor vehicle crash caused by someone else’s negligence or recklessness, New York laws allow you to hold the at-fault person liable for the damages you suffered. This extends to accidents caused by public transit, as well
When it comes to suing a city or government entity, some of the rules are different.
The statute of limitations
One of the primary differences is your time limit for filing a claim. For most personal injury claims in New York, you have three years to file a lawsuit. However, when it comes to public transit, you have only 90 days from the day you sustained the injury to file a Notice of Claim.
Notice of Claim
The Notice of Claim is not a lawsuit but a document providing information about the incident to the relevant government entity. The entity has 30 days after that to request a hearing where you will have an opportunity to testify about the incident under oath. There may be a settlement attempt, or you may file a lawsuit. You only have a year and 90 days to file the lawsuit.
Proof of negligence
The elements of negligence are generally the same for any personal injury case:
- The transit authority owed a legal duty to keep you safe.
- The transit authority breached that duty.
- You suffered an injury.
- The breach directly caused the injury.
The court typically uses a formula to determine if the defendant breached the duty that weighs the safety risk and the seriousness of your injury against what it costs the defendant to eliminate the risk.