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Can I Sue If I Was A Passenger In A Car Accident?

/ Car Accident /

NEW YORK – Each year, thousands of passengers are seriously injured in car crashes – and each of them have a long list of questions. One of the most common questions our Bronx car accident lawyers hear from passengers is, Can I Sue If I Was A Passenger In A Car Accident?

The short answer is YES.

Can I Sue If I Was A Passenger In A Car Accident?

If you were a passenger in a car crash, YOU CAN’T BE AT FAULT! At least one of the drivers will be liable for any injuries you’ve suffered. In almost every circumstance, passengers can file a personal injury claim and be entitled to the maximum recovery.

There are several factors that must be analyzed after any accident, and our Bronx car accident lawyers strongly suggest giving an experienced legal team a call immediately following your accident. Getting an experienced Bronx car accident lawyer ensures that you will get the best result possible from any injury claim filed on your behalf.

Insurance Complications

Insurance companies like to make things complicated – not only for drivers, but injured passengers too! Local laws further complicate matters, which is why we suggest giving our Bronx car accident attorneys a call; it’s not going to cost you anything to ask questions!

Here are some insurance items to consider:

  • Get Insurance Information for ALL Drivers Involved – as a passenger, this information is critical. In some cases, more than one driver can be responsible for your injuries.
  • No-Fault States – some states, like New York, require an injured passenger would need to file a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or No-Fault claim.
  • Liability Disagreements – although many passenger injury claims may seem like open-and-shut cases, the insurance companies often squabble over liability, which can delay a passenger’s settlement. Liability determines who’s insurance company is responsible for ponying-up any injury costs.
  • Multiple Passenger Claims – When multiple passengers are injured by a negligent driver, ALL of their claims must be settled within the driver’s insurance coverage limit. This amount varies, but if the driver has a low-cost insurance policy, it may mean that every injured passenger has to split the amount of coverage. This gets complicated even further when there are disagreements about how that limit should be split.

A car accident can be a complicated mess, which is why we always suggest calling a Bronx car accident lawyer for FREE. They can file a claim on your behalf and keep you informed of the status of that claim while you focus on your recovery.

If you have any questions about car accidents, injuries, insurance, or the legal system, call a Bronx car accident attorney at Cellino & Barnes for a FREE case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

How Long Does It Take To Get A Settlement?

/ Car Accident /

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – There are countless questions accident victims have on their minds when they’re injured, but as the medical bills and lost time at work keep adding up, there’s one question everyone wants our Rochester car accident attorneys to answer: How Long Does It Take To Get A Settlement?

Like most questions our Rochester car accident lawyers hear, this can be tough to answer – especially if your case is in the early stages.

How Long Does It Take To Get A Settlement?

It’s nearly impossible to determine a time-frame for a personal injury settlement. Some cases settle in just a few months while other cases can take years, and even go trial. Although many injured accident victims are eager to close their case as quickly as possible, the Rochester car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have discovered that spending a little extra time on a case can make a huge difference.


Every case is unique, and the time it takes to get a settlement widely varies; but there are certain factors that typically need more time to properly address:

  • Insurance Companies. Some insurers are just hard to work with. They’re all required by law to meet certain deadlines, but some insurance companies take their time to respond.
  • Type of Injurie(s). In the early stages, doctors can’t tell how long it’s going to take for an injury to heal – and that’s important information! Other injuries may require years of expensive treatments, and more visits to the doctor’s office. Our Rochester car accident lawyers will use
  • all of this information to help you get the best result possible from your claim.
  • Civil Claims Process. Even if it’s a fair value, insurance companies often don’t accept the first settlement offer. This forces the injured party and their legal counsel to file a lawsuit, which involves a discovery period. While lawsuits sometimes end up in front of a jury, our Rochester car accident lawyers are always negotiating with the insurance company out-of-court during this time.

Generally, cases involving serious injuries take the most time to reach a settlement. Months or years may sound like a big timeframe, but our Rochester car accident lawyers urge their clients to consider the benefits of not settling too quickly:

  1. Taking Time Improves The Case Value. This often means more compensation for the accident victim(s) and/or their family.
  2. More Information. When it comes to personal injury cases, information is king. A quick settlement may sound nice, but it can often leave you in a bad position months or years down the road when your injury still hasn’t healed, and the medical bills keep coming in the mail.
  3. Promote Change. In some very unique cases, an accident can highlight major flaws in our government, legal system, safety standards, and in our society. Settling these cases too quickly is like sweeping the dust under the rug – the problem is still there, and it’s bound to hurt someone else in the future.

If you have any questions about filing a personal injury claim, call our Rochester car accident lawyers for a FREE consultation. We’d be happy to take a look at your unique situation anytime – our Rochester car accident lawyers are available to help 24/7 to help accident victims get answers to their questions, and the best result possible from an injury claim.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

What Can You Claim After A Car Accident?

/ Car Accident /

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Insurance is overly complicated, and that gives the big insurance companies and advantage when you’ve been in a car accident. Luckily, you don’t have the go up against the insurance monsters alone. At Cellino & Barnes, our Buffalo car accident lawyers have helped thousands of people get the best result possible from their accident claims – but before they received their settlements, many of our clients had questions, including “What Can You Claim After A Car Accident?”

What Can You Claim After A Car Accident?

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you can receive compensation for compensatory damages and general damages.

Compensatory Damages include:

  • Medical Bills
  • Lost Wages
  • Loss of Earning Capacity
  • Property Loss (car/property damages)
  • Other Related Expenses

General Damages include:

  • Pain and Suffering
  • Loss of Consortium (strain on relationships)
  • Emotional Damages
  • Loss of Mobility
  • Other Bodily Damages That Are Not Quantifiable

If the other driver was overtly careless (a DWI, for example), an injured car accident victim may also be able to get Punitive Damages, which are meant to punish the person responsible for your injuries.

One of the most important things an injured car accident victim can do is to document everything, and get the appropriate treatments for the injuries. Under compensatory damages, medical bills can include:

  • Ambulance Charges
  • Doctor’s Visits
  • Therapy
  • Associated Prescriptions
  • In-Home Services
  • And More

There are a number of ways you can receive compensation after a car accident, but there are deadlines that must be met and procedures that must be followed. With an experienced New York car accident lawyer on your side, you’re making sure you’re going to get the best result possible from your claim.

Insurance companies know that when an accident victim contacts Cellino & Barnes, the value of that case rises four-times on average.

If you have any questions like “What Can You Claim After A Car Accident?” Do not hesitate to call an experienced New York car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes for a FREE consultation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

What Should I Settle For In A Car Accident?

/ Car Accident, Personal Injury /

NEW YORK – You are a good person, trapped in a bad situation. As New York personal injury lawyers, we see this scenario all the time; and one of the most common questions we hear is: What Should I Settle For In A Car Accident?

Unfortunately, that bad situation can quickly get out of hand without the right help on your side.

The insurance industry has made the claims process so convoluted that it’s nearly impossible for the average person to understand. In some cases, they’ve even used ethically questionable techniques to gain an upper-hand on accident victims, who are just trying to get what’s fair.

What Should I Settle For In A Car Accident?

Even before you start negotiating a settlement, gather all the information you can get about your accident. Where did it occur? Who’s at fault? Do you have an accident report? Did you get medical attention? Answering these questions and others will help you get the best result possible. It will also help you calculate a reasonable amount of compensation owed to you.

So, how do you settle a claim without getting screwed by the insurance company? Here are some tips anyone who’s been involved in an accident can follow:

  • Get Immediate Medical Attention. NO IFS ANDS OR BUTS ABOUT IT. Not seeking medical treatments and failing to follow-up with your doctor tells the insurance adjuster that you’re not really injured. If you really were hurt in an accident (even if it’s minor), see a doctor right away and document everything.
  • Get Your Information Together. Take pictures of the crash scene. Get statements from witnesses and other the driver(s) involved. WRITE IT DOWN. Grab a copy of the accident report, too!
  • NEVER EVER Speak To An Adjuster. Why is the at-fault party’s insurance company calling you? They’re checking-up on you, and writing things like this: “Well, they didn’t seem injured when I talked to them,” or “They told me they didn’t get medical attention, so the injury must be minor.” They have the whole conversation recorded.
  • Get Legal Representation. Although anyone can file a claim, insurance is so complicated now that you might need a law degree to understand it. Your first call after an accident should be for medical attention. Your second call should have you dialing a phone number of an experienced, local legal team.

At Cellino & Barnes, a New York personal injury lawyer will walk you through your case from day one, and help you achieve the best result possible. Our team approach has been successful in all 50 states, and we’ve helped our clients obtain over $2 Billion in settlements and verdicts.

If you have any questions about the claims process, or if you want file an accident claim, call us! The call is FREE – and our experienced New York personal injury attorneys are happy to help.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

What To Do If You’re Hit By A Tractor Trailer

/ Motor Vehicle Crashes, Truck Accident, Uncategorized /

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Big truck accidents are on the rise. Since 2009, deadly truck crashes have increased nearly 30-percent, and thousands of innocent drivers and passengers are injured or killed by these large trucks each year.

No one ever wants to think about what to do if you’re hit by a tractor trailer, but many heartbroken families have asked us this question after a loved one was hurt, often seriously, in a truck crash.

If you or a family member has been in an accident with an 18-wheeler, the New York truck accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes recommend taking the following four actions:

What To Do If You’re Hit By A Tractor Trailer

  1. Get Medical Attention. In any type of crash, your health and well-being are paramount. If anyone else was injured, get them medical attention as soon as possible. Studies have found that immediate medical attention can save lives and reduce the long-term severity of an injury.
  2. Take Pictures & Find Witnesses. If you did not require medical attention, immediately start taking pictures and getting information from witnesses and other drivers/passengers involved in the wreck. If you’re physically unable to gather this information, call a family member or friend to do this for you. It will also be helpful to take photos of your original injuries.
  3. Gather Information. Aside from obtaining the other drivers’ insurance information and a police report from the responding law enforcement agency, there are several other questions you’ll want answered after a truck accident that could be useful later on:
    1. What company does the truck driver work for?
    2. What cargo was the truck carrying (if any)?
    3. Where was the truck going?
    4. How many hours has the truck driver been on the road today? How many total hours this week?
  4. Call A Truck Accident Attorney. Even before calling your insurance company, contact an experienced New York truck accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes. The insurance companies may try to settle with you, even before a claim is filed – and it’s usually much less than what your claim will be worth. Our legal team is in your corner, and we’ll make sure you get the best result possible from an injury claim.

Insurance companies know that they can save money by offering you less compensation. They also know that when a victim is represented by an experienced truck accident lawyer, the value of the case goes up, 4x on average.

Getting into a truck accident is stressful enough – don’t let the insurance companies add to your stress. Call an experienced New York truck accident attorney at Cellino & Barnes, and let us fight the insurance company for you.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888


How Likely Are You To Have A Car Accident? (Study)

/ Car Accident /

NEW YORK – How likely are you to have a car accident? It’s a tough to answer, but if your name is “Sarah” or “David,” you may be more likely than others. Are you in your early 30s? If you answered ‘yes,’ be careful – because you may be more likely to get into a car accident, according to a new British study of common trends.

Researchers analyzed 25,000 incident reports to find out what makes a driver more or less likely to be involved in an accident. Among its findings, those who drive Ford cars were most accident-prone, accounting for 16% of all crashes.

Drivers who are 30-years-old were most likely to cause an accident, and those who are 32-years-old were most commonly on the receiving end of an accident.

New York car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes say most people will unfortunately experience a car accident at some point in their lives, no matter how safe or cautious of a driver they are. Although this study’s method is unproven (there could simply just be more Sarahs and Davids out there), a New York car accident lawyer says it shows there’s still progress to be made and every driver should be cautious, defensive and safe when they’re behind the wheel.

How Likely Are You To Have A Car Accident?

The Top Five Women Most Likely To Be In An Accident:

  1. Sarah
  2. Emma
  3. Susan
  4. Rebecca
  5. Lisa

The Top Five Men Most Likely To Be In An Accident:

  1. David
  2. John
  3. Paul
  4. Michael
  5. James

The Top Five Cars Most Likely To Cause An Accident:

  1. Ford – Fiesta
  2. Mercedes Benz – Sprinter
  3. Ford – Focus
  4. Ford – KA
  5. Vauxhall – Corsa

The Top Five Cars Most Likely To Be Struck In An Accident:

  1. Ford – Fiesta
  2. Ford – Focus
  3. Audi – A3
  4. Mercedes Benz – Sprinter
  5. Volkswagen – Golf

Note: this research was conducted in Britain, and may not be an accurate reflection of America’s roads. But it’s still interesting information (especially if your name or your vehicle made the list!)

Whether your name or vehicle is on the list or not, a New York car accident lawyer suggests contacting an experienced attorney at Cellino & Barnes if you’ve been hurt in any type of accident. Our attorneys can help you navigate through the complex claims process and stand-up against the big insurance company to make sure you’re getting the best result possible. Call us for a FREE consultation.

Cellino & Barnes

(800) 888-8888

Will Health Insurance Cover Car Accidents?

/ Car Accident, Uncategorized /

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Insurance is complicated.

Wow. That’s an understatement. Many of the questions our clients ask us involve the web of truths, half-truths and lies about insurance and how it works. One of the most common questions we’re asked is:

Will Health Insurance Cover Car Accidents?

Yes, after your car insurance coverage has been used up, your medical bills will be covered by your co-pay and health insurance.

That’s the simple answer. But when you’re working with insurance, things get real complicated real fast. That’s why we always recommend calling a car accident attorney at Cellino & Barnes immediately after you’ve been in a car crash.

The Complicated Aspects of Insurance


We don’t want you to get confused. Yes, some insurance companies may offer you a small cash settlement if you’ve been injured and were not at-fault for the crash. But this amount is often far less than what you deserve, and in the end, you may end up paying A LOT more.

Keep in mind,  your health insurance company (or Medicare/Medicaid) will likely demand reimbursement with some of the funds from your personal injury settlement. This is known as a lien.

A Rochester car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes knows how the insurance industry uses complicated tricks to confuse innocent victims of car crashes – just so they can save a little corporate cash. We don’t fall for their tricks, and our team can help accident victims get the best results possible from an injury claim.

If you have ANY questions, call us for a FREE consultation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

What To Do When You’re Rear Ended?

/ Car Accident /

NEW YORK – Rear-end collisions are the most common type of motor vehicle accident, and many Americans will be involved in one at some point in their lives. From an investigator’s standpoint, it’s often very easy to determine who’s at fault in a rear-end crash: it’s the driver who slammed into the back bumper of another car. However, these accidents come with a range of issues for victims, and many of them are left asking, What To Do When You’re Rear Ended?

We took this question to the New York car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes.

What To Do When You’re Rear Ended:

  • Take Notes – what happened in the moments leading up to the accident?
  • Injured?  Call 911 and get immediate medical attention
  • Contact the Police – a police report will be useful when filing a claim with the insurance company
  • Gather Information – You’ll want contact information for the other driver(s) involved, including name, phone number, address, and license number
  • Next Steps – These accidents often result in head, neck and spinal injuries. Even if you don’t experience any symptoms of an injury at first, they can develop over the next few days, weeks or even months. CALL AN EXPERIENCED CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER.

Cellino & Barnes offers accident victims a FREE case evaluation, in which an experienced car accident lawyer can go over your accident information with you and help you determine the right steps for your unique situation.

For more information on rear-end accidents, visit this page, dedicated to rear-end car accident information.

Cellino & Barnes

(800) 888-8888

10 Things You Have To Do After A Car Accident

/ Car Accident /

What Is Liability in a Car Accident? Knowing Your Risks on the RoadBUFFALO, N.Y. – There are thousands of car accidents in Western New York every single year. While many of them are just fender-benders, some give drivers and passengers much more to worry about than just an insurance headache. Roughly one-third of all car accidents involve an injury, and most of the victims in these accidents may want to call a Buffalo car accident lawyer to make sure they’re getting fair compensation.

The key word here is “fair.” Unfortunately, the insurance industry doesn’t always play fair when it comes to compensating those who’ve been injured in an accident that’s little or no fault of their own.  The Buffalo car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have spent the last 60 years fighting for accident victims, and they’ve discovered 10 things an injured driver, passenger and their family members can do immediately after a crash to ensure they get fair compensation:

  1. STOP. Even if the accident is minor, you should ALWAYS exchange information with the other driver(s) and passenger(s). Driving away from the scene of an accident could also add criminal charges to your record.
  2. CALL 911. Even if no one is seriously injured, it will be good to have a police report when you file a claim for car repairs. When someone is injured, the police report will be equally important when filing a personal injury claim.
  3. KEEP A RECORD. Write down everything that happened. This information will be important when investigators are filing an accident report. It’s important to be as accurate as possible, so don’t speculate or fabricate your story.
  4. NEVER ADMIT FAULT. Even if the accident was clearly caused by your own mistakes, you don’t know that for sure. The other driver may have been drinking. There may have been a mechanical malfunction. Distractions may have taken the other driver’s eyes off the road. Bottom line is, there are a number of factors to analyze before anyone can be determined ‘at fault’ for an accident.
  5. TAKE PICTURES. In today’s age of smartphones, most drivers and passengers on the road have a camera on them. It is vital to take pictures of the accident scene as soon as possible – even before moving your vehicles off the roadway. If you or anyone in your vehicle have visible injuries, take pictures of those too.
  6. GATHER AS MUCH INFORMATION AS POSSIBLE. Although accident investigators (police) often write this information down, they aren’t always perfect. In some cases, they have taken down incorrect license plate numbers, names, and locations of an accident. Don’t rely solely on the police report – do your own information gathering. This includes getting the other driver’s insurance information, name, license plate number, and contact details.
  7. CALL CELLINO & BARNES. Even if you believe your injuries are minor, they may turn out to be more severe than you think. A slight headache could be due to a traumatic brain injury. And a stiff neck could actually be permanent damage to your spinal cord. Even before contacting your insurance company, we recommend calling Cellino & Barnes, as our Buffalo car accident lawyers can provide you with the proper steps and procedures for your unique situation.
  8. CHECK-IN WITH YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY. Always alert your insurance company of any accident you’ve been in, and cooperate with adjusters and their team. But REMEMBER — the insurance company is NOT your friend. Always weigh advice from your attorney before signing any papers from insurance agencies. Your insurance company may also represent the other driver, and they may attempt to try to get you to sign a settlement that is way below “fair” value.
  9. HAVE COPIES OF ALL MEDICAL RECORDS. We’ve all encountered the complexities of insurance in one way or another. When someone is injured in a car accident, not only are they dealing with car insurance… they’re also working with health insurance. This can be very complex, and it’s important to keep an active log of each doctor seen and every medical record on file.
  10. BE ORGANIZED. The Buffalo car accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes recommend keeping a file of all accident-related documents, photos, and notes. This file should also include information on your attorney, your claim number, who your adjuster is, what doctors you visited, and contact numbers for everyone involved in the accident.

The most common frustrations accident victims deal with today are insurance-related. These seem like small problems at first, but they can devastate you and your family if they aren’t handled properly.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a Buffalo car crash, contact a car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes today for FREE. Our No Fee Promise guarantees that you will not owe a fee unless we win your case. You have nothing to lose — but everything to gain when you call our Buffalo car accident lawyers.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

Lawmakers Help Injured Train Accident Victims In Amtrak Crash

/ Train Accidents /

WASHINGTON – A passenger train carrying several GOP lawmakers hit a truck in the hills of Virginia. The White House said in a statement that one person was killed and another seriously injured. Officials said more passengers suffered minor injuries.

“There are no serious injuries among members of Congress or their staff,” the White House statement reported. “Senior Administration officials are in regular contact with Amtrak and state and local authorities. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone that has been affected by this incident.”

Many Republican members of Congress were on the train, heading to a yearly retreat at the Greenbrier, in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Some of the lawmakers on board are doctors who assisted the injured, including Reps. Larry Bucshon of Indiana, Roger Marshall of Kansas and Brad Wenstrup of Ohio, all of whom also have medical degrees.

A New York train accident lawyer says passengers often suffer severe injuries in similar train crashes, and insurance alone may not provide enough compensation to give them the best medical treatment possible. In at least one case, nothing will ever replace the family member who was killed in the Crozet, Virginia train accident; but family members can file a wrongful death claim that can not only provide them with compensation — it can also force train companies to make vital changes that would prevent future accidents from happening.

Those injured in the crash, even those who suffered ‘minor’ injuries, may be entitled to significant compensation if they file a personal injury train accident claim. A New York train accident lawyer can help victims around the nation file these claims and make sure victims and their families receive the best results possible. This compensation can include reimbursements for:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost time at work/wages
  • Pain & Suffering
  • Future medical procedures
  • And more…

A New York train accident lawyer also said it’s important for crash victims to make sure their legal team is exploring all possibilities. Train accident victims often face an outdated monetary ‘cap,’ restricting the amount of compensation they can receive after a train crash. However, an experienced train accident attorney can fully investigate the crash, and hold others accountable for their negligent actions. This legal investigation can look at several factors, including:

  • if the train brakes were functioning properly
  • if the engineer was awake and alert
  • if the train was speeding
  • if all systems were operating within normal parameters
  • if safety features were properly installed and working at the time of the crash

In many train accident cases, other vehicles can be involved. This was the case in the Crozet, Virginia train accident, in which a garbage truck was crossing the tracks at the time of the crash. A New York train accident attorney says this part of the investigation should not be neglected, and an experienced lawyer will look at the following pieces of evidence:

  • Was the truck driver licensed?
  • Did the truck driver have the right of way?
  • Can the company the driver was working for be held responsible?
  • Was the truck properly maintained?
  • Was the truck driver awake and alert at the time of the crash?

The answers to these questions can be vital for train accident victims and the families seeking compensation after a devastating crash. According to Amtrak, two crew members and three passengers were taken to area hospitals to receive treatments following the Crozet, Virginia train accident. Some of these victims may never make a full recovery – physically or mentally – which is why it’s important for all train accident victims to receive fair and just compensation after any crash that could have been prevented.

For more information on train accidents, or to file a claim, follow this link.

Client Thanks

I would like to thank your firm for representing our family on behalf of my late husband. This whole process was, at times, difficult for us and sometimes painful. But, we were always in good hands as Brian and Maria are two of the hardest working and sincerest people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. They did a tremendous job.

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