Irene Gabo on the Morning Show at Davidzon Radio – December 14, 2020
I fell by my building but didn’t tell anyone and went home. I then went to the hospital. Now I told the super, and he said why did I wait so long? Is it too late to do anything?
You have 3 years to start a personal injury action in most of the circumstances. The reason you may want to report an injury earlier is if the condition that caused you to fall is transient (like rain coming through the open window and seeping to the floor of the lobby) or if there is a video that only records for a certain period of time, and then records over it. If you have an injury and you are able to take a photograph of where you got injured or a picture of the defect, right after the accident or shortly thereafter, it will be tremendously helpful to your case. In this case, you still have a claim, but the landlord will argue that the accident is unwitnessed, unreported and the defect was not timely observed, and it will be your word against theirs.
I was in a store in Americana Manhasset and my daughter opened the door to the fitting room and the framed painting fell on my head. I left without taking any incident report. What can be done?
A lot of department stores, especially pricier ones have video surveillance in their stores. They are not allowed for privacy reasons to records inside the fitting room but they can records around it or on the selling floor. Therefore, first thing to do would be to send a claim letter to the store asking them to preserve and provide the video if any of the location of the accident. If you went to the hospital right after and told the hospital how the accident happened or if you took photos right after the accident of the fallen frame, this will be helpful to the case. If prior to this you bought something in the store, or at the mall, and have receipts you can use them to show that you were in the area at the time of the accident.
I was on the boardwalk and got hit by a bicyclist. He then ran away. Can we do anything?
Most likely not. The bicyclists do not carry insurance, and even if you have car insurance, it will not cover you in case the bicycle hit and run because it was not an accident with the car. Certain portions of the boardwalk have limited hours for biking on the boardwalk, but if that is violated, you need to sue the City and prove that they filed to follow up on their own regulations.
My daughter was ice skating in Prospect Park and fell and broke her wrist. I am not sure if there is anything we can do.
There is a doctrine called an assumption of risk where if you engage in some activities, like sports, you assume the risk that an injury can happen. Same thing here, by putting on skates, you assume the risk that you can get hurt when you fall. However, I have had cases where people trip on the way to the rink, because the carpet leading to the rink was bunched up or not evenly spread out and the skates got caught in it. So I really need to know where the person fell to make sure if there is a case.
The sanitation truck hit my car making a turn but I didn’t get a chance to take truck plate and they didn’t stop. My insurance wont pay for my car damage. What do you suggest?
First you need a police report called MV104 which you can download online and submit within 10 days to DMV Albany. Then a Freedom of Information law request must be made to the City of New York to the Department of Sanitation to see which truck was in the area of the accident on the date and time of your accident, because all sanitation trucks have routes. Remember you need a 90 day notice of claim to the city even in the case of property damage only. So a notice may be needed before you even get a respond to your FOIL request, and once request comes and the truck is identified you can bring a case against the City or try to settle with them privately.
I had some hot dogs from Ikea and got sick the next day. I called them and they ask if I have an attorney. Can you help?
If this is something that made you sick for one or two days and then you got better, there is not enough of a case for me to get involved. I suggest I visit a doctor for a check up, do any necessary tests to see if there was food poisoning and write a letter to Ikea with a claim on your own. If you can prove that it was the hot dogs that proved the poisoning and not something else you ate you can get a settlement from them on your own. Small claims is also a good option there. You may about $20 dollars to file a claim and you can sue up to $10,000.00 there with no attorney needed.