What Is Considered Reckless Driving in New York?

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In New York, citations are often issued for reckless driving, which typically involves putting other motorists, motorcycle riders, cyclists, pedestrians, and others in danger through negligent driving behaviors such as speeding and unsafe lane changes. In worst-case scenarios, reckless driving can lead to catastrophic accidents and injuries for all victims involved.

If you have been injured in an accident that was caused by a reckless driver, get in touch with the New York City car accident lawyers at Finz & Finz, P.C. right away. Our attorneys have the knowledge and resources to help you seek justice and fair compensation. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Types of Driving That Would Be Considered Reckless

Some common types of driving that would be considered reckless by law enforcement in the state of New York include:

  • Disregarding police traffic barriers
  • Speeding, especially in areas with heavy foot traffic
  • Off-roading
  • Exiting a highway at the last minute and weaving through oncoming traffic
  • Driving in between lanes and causing collisions
  • Drunk driving or driving while under the influence of drugs and causing collisions

Labeling driving behaviors as “reckless” can be challenging, as the definition of the term is a bit vague. Some factors that may help determine whether reckless driving behavior occurred include:

  • Time of day
  • Weather conditions
  • Traffic conditions
  • Presence of other motorists, cyclists, pedestrians, and others.
  • The accused driver’s knowledge of the area

Reckless Driving Can Cause Severe Injury Accidents

Reckless drivers put other motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians in danger by driving irresponsibly or aggressively, particularly in areas with heavy traffic.

Reckless driving, speeding, tailgating, and other aggressive driving behaviors can cause accidents that result in devastating injuries, such as:

  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI’s) such as concussions, skull fractures, and potentially life-threatening hematomas.
  • Back and spine injuries including sprains, strains, pinched nerves, ruptured discs, fractured vertebrae, and more. If the spine is broken, it can cause a person to become paralyzed. Depending on the location of the injury, paralysis could occur in the lower body and possibly in the arms, too.
  • Internal injuries, including internal organ damage and bleeding. Punctured lungs, ruptured spleens, ruptured kidneys, and ruptured livers are all examples of life-threatening internal injuries.
  • Whiplash, which is a soft-tissue injury that can occur when a person’s head jerks violently around in a car accident, often due to being hit from the rear. Whiplash can limit the range of movement in the shoulders and neck, and result in chronic pain and discomfort.
  • Broken and fractured bones, which can happen anywhere in the body. Many bone fractures and breaks require surgery and take many months to heal.
  • PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as other mental issues including depression, anxiety, and loss of enjoyment of life.

If you have been injured in an accident with a reckless driver, you deserve to be properly compensated so that you can get the care you need and eventually get back on your feet. Navigating the claim process can be difficult, and New York’s no-fault state laws can make it seem confusing. That’s why it is crucial to consult with a New York car accident attorney as soon as possible.

Compensation for a Reckless Driving Accident

If you have been injured in an accident caused by a reckless driver, you could be entitled to compensation. New York is a no-fault state, which means that you typically turn to your own insurance policy for coverage if you are injured in an accident, regardless of who was at fault. New Yorkers are required to carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, also known as no-fault insurance coverage.

Personal injury protection covers:

  • Medical and rehabilitation expenses
  • Compensation for lost earnings if you are unable to return to work
  • Death benefits
  • Other expenses

However, in some cases, particularly if your injuries are severe, your PIP policy may not fully cover all damages resulting from the accident. No-fault insurance also doesn’t cover pain and suffering and other non-financial losses.

If you meet New York’s serious injury threshold, then you may qualify to step outside New York’s no-fault insurance and claim damages through a personal injury lawsuit. Serious injuries include injuries such as disfigurement, dismemberment, loss of a fetus, fractures, loss of a bodily organ or system, limitation of a body function or system, as well as death.

Through a personal injury lawsuit, you could also seek compensation for:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of consortium
  • Other non-financial losses

Whether you are pursuing compensation through your insurance policy or a personal injury lawsuit, the legal team at Finz & Finz, P.C. has the necessary skills to help you navigate the claim process, gather evidence to support your case and negotiate with the insurance company.

Contact A New York Car Accident Attorney

If you have been injured in an accident that was caused by a reckless driver, the car accident attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C. can help in several ways:

  • Conduct a thorough investigation of the accident.
  • Gather evidence to support your case, including photos, videos, surveillance footage, witness testimony, police reports, and more.
  • Hire experts to help bolster your claim.
  • Calculate damages on your behalf while you recover.
  • Identify the at-fault party or parties.
  • Determine whether you qualify for a personal injury lawsuit.
  • Negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
  • Fight your case out in court if necessary.

Being involved in an accident with a reckless driver can be incredibly stressful and confusing. Let us take some of that burden off your shoulders by allowing our experienced car accident attorneys to advocate for your right to compensation. Contact a New York and Long Island car accident lawyer at Finz & Finz, P.C. today for a free consultation.



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Finz & Finz, P.C. is a New York and Long Island personal injury law firm based out of Mineola, NY. It was founded in 1984 and is highly rated, with many honors and awards of excellence.