NYC Taxi Cab Accident Information

With thousands of taxi cabs in New York City racing to pick up and deliver passengers it is no wonder that NYC taxi cabs accidents are a regular occurrence, often resulting to personal injuries to passengers. Below are some commonly asked questions regarding New York City Taxi Cabs Accidents: Q. Are there any rules that govern operation of a New York City Taxi Cab? A. New York City Taxi Cabs must comply with the same rules applicable to all motor vehicles in New York.  Such rules can be found in the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Laws, and the New York City Traffic Rules. Some of the those rules are discussed below.  The New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission regulates Taxis in New York City and the Commission has additional rules which effect ownership and operation of for hire vehicles in New York City. Q. Are passengers required to use a seat belt in a New York City Taxi Cab? A. All drivers of automobiles in New York must wear a seat belt, as well as all front seat passengers.  Passengers in the rear seat under the age of 16 are not legally required to wear a seat belt.  However, rear seat passengers of New York City Taxi cabs should always wear a seat belt.  Many injuries to taxi cab passengers are caused when unbelted passengers strike their head or face on the plexiglass divider between the front and rear of the taxi.  Such an injury can often be avoided by wearing a seat belt.  However, a claim can be brought even if a seat belt was not used. Q. Are their any rules as to which side of a taxi a passenger should enter or exit? A. New York City Traffic Rules states that no person shall get out of any vehicle from the side facing on the traveled part of the street in such manner as to interfere with the right of the operator of an approaching vehicle or bicycle.  It is always safer to enter and exit a taxi on side of the cab closest to the curb. Q. Can a New York City Taxi Cab stop in the middle of the road to pick up a passenger? A. NYC Traffic rules requires that a taxi cab pull to the curb, or as near as possible so as to not interfere with traffic, when picking up or dropping off a passenger. Q. Am I required to tip a stranger who hails a cab for me in New York City? A. No. Unless asked to do so no person shall hail or procure for another, not in his own social company, a taxi or other passenger vehicle. Q.  Is a taxicab driver in New York allowed to talk on the phone while driving? A.  No driver of a motor vehicle in New York shall shall operate a taxicab on a public road while using a mobile telephone to engage in a call while the taxi cab is in motion.  This prohibition is for cell phones being held to the ear by hand.  Taxi cab drivers may use phones with wireless or blue tooth technology which are not "hand-held mobile telephones".  However, the use of a cell phone that distracts a driver would be a violation of traffic rules. Q. Can I recover money for personal injuries suffered due to the negligence of a New York City taxi cab driver? A. Yes. If a NYC Taxi driver is negligent, the driver and owner of the cab can be sued for damages. Q. Who can I complain to about the unsafe driving of a New York City Taxi Driver? A. Complaints about NYC taxi drivers can be made by calling 311 in New York City, or at 311 online Q. Are New York City taxi cabs required to carry insurance to pay for pain and suffering? A. Yes. All NYC Taxi Cabs must carry at least $100,000 in liability  insurance for personal injuries to others.  The insurance covers  passengers, pedestrians, and/or drivers and occupants of other cars. For damages in excess of the insurance policy recovery can be had directly from the driver or owner of the taxi.  Often additional money can be recovered, especially if their is equity in the taxi medallion, which is a valuable commodity. Q. How do I find out the identity of the insurance company for a New York City taxicab? A. If you do not know the name of the insurance company you can find it here at the NYC Taxi & Limousine website. You will need to know the license plate of the taxicab. Q. Are New York City taxi cabs required to pay for medical expenses for injuries suffered in taxi cab accidents, regardless of fault? A. Yes.  Each NYC taxi cab carries at least $50,000 in No Fault Insurance which will pay for medical expenses, lost income, and out of pocket expenses incurred as a result of a the use of a taxi.  These expenses will be paid through No Fault Insurance regardless of whose fault the accident is. Q. How much time do I have to file a "No Fault" claim for expenses incurred in a taxi cab accident? A. Under New York's No Fault Insurance Laws a claim should be filed with the taxi cab's No Fault Insurer within 30 days of the accident or as soon as reasonably practicable. Q.  Is the owner of a New York City taxi cab responsible for the negligence of the driver? A. Yes. Under New York State Law the owner of a motor vehicle is liable for the negligence of the driver of the vehicle. Q. What is the statute of limitations for taxi cab accidents in New York? A. In New York a three (3) year statute of limitations applies.  Any lawsuit for injuries suffered in a taxi cab, or any motor vehicle accident, in New York must be brought within three (3) years of the date of the accident. Q. Can I sue for pain and suffering from injuries suffered in an accident caused by a New York City Taxi Cab? A. A person can sue the driver and/or owner of a NYC Taxi Cab for pain and suffering if the injured person suffered a "serious injury" under the New York State No Fault Laws.  There are several categories of serious injuries, and a New York Personal Injury Lawyer should be consulted to determine whether your injury qualifies as a "serious injury" under New York's No Fault Laws. Q. Should I consult a New York Personal Injury Lawyer if I have been involved in an accident involving a New York City taxi cab? A. If you have been involved in a an accident involving a NYC Taxi Cab you should consult a New York City Personal Injury Lawyer.  As can be seen above there are many rules, laws and deadlines that apply to NYC taxi cabs, and accidents involving them. An experienced personal injury attorney will be aware of these rules and be able to advise you. The attorneys at Zalman Schnurman & Miner are experienced personal injury lawyers who have handled numerous lawsuits against New York City Taxi Cabs, and have recovered millions of dollars for persons injured due to the negligence of taxi cabs. For a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer at Zalman Schnurman & Miner at 1-800-LAWLINE (1-800-529-5463)

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