A prior injury to the same body part that was injured in an accident can complicate a personal injury case, and it helps to have an experienced Buffalo personal injury lawyer if you are in this sitution.

Not everyone can be expected to be in perfect shape prior to an injury accident, and prior injury does not bar making a claim for damages when an accident causes additional injury at the same body part.

An injured person may pursue damages when an accident causes a pre-existing medical condition to flare up or become more serious.

A new injury to a part of the body where a prior injury had occurred also entitles the injured person to pursue damages.

When there is a pre-existing injury, the defense typically will argue that the injured person’s current condition is not much different than it was before the accident and, as a result, the injured person is not entitled to any financial compensation for personal injury.

When considering this issue, a jury will decide whether the injured person had a pre-existing condition and, if so, was it worsened by the accident.

If they determine that the accident did make the condition worse, then the injured person may be able to recover damages.

The injured party, however, may only be compensated for that portion of the injury directly caused by the accident.

As a result, a person with a pre-existing condition may receive less in damages than someone who was fully healthy prior to an accident.

If you need an experienced personal injury lawyer, we would be happy to help you. Call us at 716-631-9999.


As experienced Buffalo personal injury lawyers, we discourage our clients from speaking with any agents of the insurance company that provides coverage for the individual who caused the personal injury.

Instead, all contact with the defendant’s insurance provider should be handled through the law firm of the personal injury lawyer hired by the injured person.

Although an insurance adjuster for the defendant may be asking innocent appearing questions about the accident and your injuries, the adjuster also may be looking for information or statements from you that can be used to minimize the amount of money they eventually pay for your injuries.

As a result, any statement you make that could be interpreted in a way that either reduces their insured’s responsibility for the accident or indicates that your injuries were minor may eventually come back to haunt you.

If you have hired a personal injury lawyer and receive a call from the defendant’s insurer, it is strongly recommended that you politely refuse to speak with them and refer them to your personal injury attorney’s office.

Most personal injury lawyer’s will contact the other party’s insurance company shortly after being hired and tell them not to have any further direct contact with you.

The insurance company is legally required to cease direct contact with you after being informed you have an attorney.

Most insurance companies will comply with this law, but there are occasions where – due to error or a particularly aggressive adjuster – they will continue to call.

If your personal injury lawyer has requested that they have no further communication with you, you should not speak with them and inform your attorney immediately.

If you have been hurt in a personal injury accident and have questions about how to proceed, please call us at 716-631-9999 for a free consultation.


There are many types of damages an injured person may claim following a Buffalo personal injury accident involving a motor vehicle.

Because what damages are available may depend on a number of factors, an injured person should speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer who is familiar with the specific circumstances of his or her case when deciding what damages to claim.

The following are some of the most common types of damages.

A person injured in a motor vehicle accident can always pursue damages for pain and suffering.

This includes both mental and physical distress.

In New York motor vehicle accidents, there is technically no limit on the amount that may be recovered for pain and suffering, although the amount available will usually be limited by the amount of auto insurance coverage.

To collect damages for pain and suffering, an injured party must prove that he or she suffered a serious injury under New York State law.

While a person injured in a car accident may also bring a claim for economic losses – such as medical expenses, lost wages from being unable to work, and the cost of having to hire someone to help around the house – New York State law does not allow a person injured in a car accident to recover these expenses unless they exceed a total of $50,000.

This is because the first $50,000 in such losses is typically paid by the injured person’s own auto insurance following a motor vehicle accident, and for which the injured person cannot be reimbursed because they were covered by other auto insurance.

If you have been injured in a car accident, it helps to have an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you understand the damages available to you. Call us at 716-631-9999.


When a Buffalo resident is injured by a poorly made or badly designed product, it may be possible to pursue a personal injury lawsuit and recover damages for that injury.

The phrase “product liability” is a general term that can refer to a wide variety of different products.

Product liability personal injury cases can involve anything from cars with dangerous defects to poorly manufactured children’s toys to pharmaceuticals that have life-threatening side effects.

While this variety makes each product liability case unique, there are some general rules that apply in all product liability personal injury cases.

Most product liability cases will require the injured party to establish that the product he is she is claiming is defective was designed or manufactured with a flaw that makes it inherently dangerous.

An example of this type of claim is when a burn victim sues an automobile manufacturer after being injured in a car fire that occurred because the design of the vehicle failed to properly protect the gas tank from impact.

It is also possible to seek damages when the design of the product is not inherently dangerous but the maker of the product knew, or had reason to know, that the item was defective.

This type of personal injury case usually involves proving that the maker was aware of shoddy workmanship in the product that led to someone being injured, but did nothing about it.

In product liability cases, it is necessary to prove that it was the defect in the product that caused the injury and that the injured person was using the product as directed – or at least in a manner that could be reasonably anticipated.

When a large number of people are injured by the same defective product, product liability cases may be brought as class action lawsuits seeking damages for everyone who was injured.

If you have been injured as a result of another’s negligence, we can help you. Call us at 716-631-9999.


Over the past several years, the Buffalo area has seen rapid expansion of the number of bicycle paths and lanes in the area.

While having specific areas designated for bicyclists helps to protect them from collisions with motor vehicles, many bicyclists still suffer personal injury as a result of bicycle-motor vehicle collisions.

When evaluating who was at fault when a bicycle and motor vehicle collide, it helps to have an experienced personal injury lawyer who understands the specific laws surrounding use of a bicycle.

A bicyclist who is riding on a roadway generally is required to follow the same rules – and has the same rights – as someone driving a car.

At locations where there is a lane specifically marked for bicycle use only, bicyclists are required to use it.

Where there is no such lane, the law requires bicyclists to travel on the right hand curb or shoulder to the extent it can be safely done.

It is against the law for bicyclists to ride more than two abreast on the road, and they must travel in single file when being overtaken by a vehicle.

If a bicyclist violates these rules, he or she is likely to be found at least partially responsible for any collision with a motor vehicle.

In most situations, motor vehicles are required to treat a bicyclist the same as they would a car.

This includes yielding to them when the car is exiting a driveway or at a stop sign, not encroaching on the lane being used by the bicyclist, and not blocking a bicyclist’s path when he or she has the right of way.

If a motor vehicle does any of these things and causes a personal injury accident, the driver of the motor vehicle may be held liable for damages.

If you have been involved in a personal injury accident and need legal help, we are experienced personal injury lawyers. Call us at 716-631-9999 for a free consultation.


Buffalo personal injury lawsuits involving an injury to a child under the age of eighteen are not uncommon.

In fact, some types of personal injury cases, such as dog bite cases, are more likely to involve injury to a minor than to an adult.

A person under the age of eighteen, however, cannot legally pursue a personal injury claim on his or her own behalf.

Because an individual under the age of eighteen may not pursue a lawsuit on his or her own behalf, any claim for personal injury must be brought by a parent or legal guardian acting on behalf of the child.

In such cases, the parent or legal guardian will technically be the plaintiff in any lawsuit.

If the plaintiff is awarded monetary damages on behalf of the child or receives damages as a result of a settlement, a court typically will review the amount of the award and the manner in which it is paid to the plaintiff.

This is done to ensure that the child is being treated fairly and is the ultimate beneficiary of the monetary award.

If the parents or guardians choose not to pursue damages in behalf of a child, the child may not pursue a personal injury claim while still a minor.

Fortunately for injured children whose parents choose not to pursue a claim, however, the statute of limitations within which to file a personal injury lawsuit is tolled during the period of the injured party’s infancy.

This means that the statute of limitations – which is usually three years in personal injury cases – does not actually begin to run until the injured person turns eighteen years old.

As a result, an injured infant whose parents refuse to file a personal injury lawsuit may file such a lawsuit within three years of turning eighteen.

If your child has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, we can help you. Call us at 716-631-9999.


All property owners in the Buffalo area are required to maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition.

If they fail to do so, they usually may be held liable if someone suffers a personal injury on their property.

However, if the injured person was using another person’s property for an outdoor recreational activity such as hiking, hunting, boating, bike riding or skiing, there are exceptions to this general rule.

While property owners are required to keep their property safe, New York State law provides an exception to this requirement when the injured person was involved in an outdoor recreational activity.

The list of activities that fall under this exception is very extensive.

It includes most common outdoor recreational activities such as fishing, hunting, hiking, sledding, horseback riding, skiing, bike riding, boating and riding a snowmobile.

Because a property owner is not required to keep his or her property safe for these activities, there may be no basis for a personal injury lawsuit against the landowner when someone performing one of these activities is injured.

If you are injured while doing an outdoor recreational activity, however, it may still be helpful to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney.

This is because there are certain situations where a person injured during a recreational activity can still sue the property owner.

If the injured person was paying the property owner to use the property or the property owner was aware of a specific hazard but did not provide any warning about it, for example, it may still be possible to pursue damages in a personal injury case.

If you were injured on someone else’s property, it is important to speak with someone who understands your legal rights.

Call us at 716-631-9999 for a free consultation.


Many people in the Buffalo area have jobs that require them to drive.

When a worker is injured in a car accident caused by another driver, the interaction of New York’s laws governing Worker’s Compensation, No Fault Insurance, and personal injury claims can make the matter very complicated.

While there is no bar to pursuing a personal injury claim in a car accident just because someone was working at the time, it may not always be in the employee’s interest to do so.

As a result, an experienced personal injury attorney should be consulted to analyze the specific facts of the case.

When a driver was not working, up to the first $50,000 of that person’s medical expenses and lost wages are usually paid by his or her own No Fault automobile insurance.

When a person is driving for work, however, these expenses are paid by Worker’s Compensation insurance instead.

A driver does not need to pursue a personal injury lawsuit to obtain these initial payments.

If the driver does make a personal injury claim against another party, these initial payments made by Worker’s Compensation insurance are treated the same as payments made by No Fault insurance.

They cannot be recovered by either the driver or the Worker’s Compensation insurance company.

This means that if the employee does pursue a personal injury claim, the Worker’s Compensation carrier cannot seek to get back the money it paid in place of No Fault payments from the negligent driver.

Worker’s Compensation may, however, recover for other payments it has made, including medical expenses and lost wages that exceed this $50,000 threshold.

In such cases, it is important to carefully analyze the best course of action to pursue.

It may not be to the driver’s benefit to make a personal injury claim if it only results in having to repay Worker’s Compensation or endangers possible future payments from Worker’s Compensation.

If you have been in a car accident and have any questions, please feel free to call us at 716-631-9999 for a free consultation.


Many Buffalo area establishments where people gather for recreation, exercise or entertainment require patrons to sign a release stating that should the patron suffer a personal injury while using the property, they will not hold the property owner or the operator of the activity liable.

Although signing such a release would seem to bar an injured person from bringing a personal injury claim, there are several exemptions to the application of such releases in New York State.

As a result, an experienced personal injury lawyer should carefully examine the release to determine if it applies when someone is injured.

Under New York State law, any release signed by an injured person related to the use of a swimming pool, gymnasium, place of public amusement or recreation, or similar establishment which exempts the facility from liability for negligence is void and unenforceable – so long as the owner or operator received a fee or other compensation for use of the facility.

The logic behind this law is that where someone is making a profit for use of a facility, that person should be held responsible for maintaining it in a safe manner and ensuring the safety of those who use the facility.

Even in cases where the injured person did not pay a fee, the release still needs to be carefully reviewed.

Releases tend to be strictly construed by the courts, and if an injury was caused by something outside the parameters of the release – such as a hazard unrelated to the facility’s normal use or a particularly dangerous condition that the owner allowed to exist at the location – it may still be possible to pursue a personal injury claim.

If you have suffered a personal injury on someone else’s property, we can help you.

Call us at 716-631-9999 for a free consultation.


All Buffalo personal injury cases require the injured person to prove the nature and extent of any injury suffered.

This process involves allowing the defendant to obtain and review the injured person’s medical records.

So that the defense may obtain these records, the person pursuing damages will have to sign an authorization, which is required under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996.

HIPAA bars medical providers from releasing any information regarding a patient’s treatment without consent.

While someone making a personal injury claim is required to give up certain privacy rights regarding medical treatment, this does not necessarily mean that the defense has a right to look at records completely unrelated to injuries suffered in the accident.

The defense is entitled to see all medical records related to treatment for injuries suffered in the accident that is the subject of the personal injury claim.

They also are entitled to see any records of prior treatment to the same body parts as the claimed injuries.

For example, if a person is claiming a neck injury and received treatment for neck pain prior to the accident, the defense is entitled to see all records regarding neck treatment, regardless of whether it occurred before or after the accident.

Only under very limited circumstances is the defense allowed to look through all of the injured person’s medical records regardless of whether they relate to a body part that was injured in the accident.

When the defense insists on seeing unrelated medical information, the matter may eventually end up in front of a judge.

The judge will review the disputed medical records and decide if they contain anything the defense has a right to know.

If you have suffered a personal injury and need legal advice, please feel free to call us at 716-631-9999.