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When you are hurt in a car accident caused by a pothole

Numerous potholes plague New York streets. The recent winter storm has brought a new batch of potholes, and this spells danger for any motorists out there. 

A pothole can contribute to a crash with another vehicle. However, it can also cause damage to only one car, and that damage comes with any injuries the people inside sustain. Many wonder what their options are when a pothole clearly shares some of the blame. Above all else, it is vital to have professional assistance to help guide you through this process. 

What are the dangers of potholes?

Serious damage can occur to a car's tires when they dip into a pothole and suddenly come back out. Many potholes feature jagged edges, and these can tear through the outer part of a tire with ease. There are also risks to the axle, undercarriage and rims.

However, potholes are a threat even if a car does not drive over it. Many people see the pothole right before driving over it. They veer into the next lane and accidentally strike another vehicle.

Can you sue New York?

There is a way to seek damages from the state, but it is incredibly specific. First, the driver needs to notify the city of the existence of the pothole within 15 days. This must be in writing. From there, the city has 15 days to repair it. In order for someone to sue the city for damage due to a pothole, the city must have had at least 15 days to repair the pothole but chose to do nothing.

You will need to document all the repairs your vehicle needs. You will also need to track any medical expenses you incurred as a result of the accident. You have 90 days to file a claim. It is possible the city will deny your claim, but you still have some options at that point. It can be difficult to get damages from city governments, but it is possible with the right team. 


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Robert L. Brenna, Jr.Selected to Super Lawyers: 2007 - 2018

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Brenna Boyce PLLC Attorney at Law
31 East Main Street
Suite 2000
Rochester, NY 14614

Phone: 585-454-2000
Fax: 585-454-3010
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