Articles Posted in Litigation Strategies

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Sticking to one lawyer throughout a case is both ideal and essential to developing a strong case. A client should only change lawyers if it is absolutely crucial. In some cases, an individual may feel dissatisfied with the services of their current lawyer, or there may arise a conflict of interest that calls for the change. You have the right to switch lawyers at any stage of your case, but you should consider various factors and follow all legal steps.

What Will Happen If Your Lawyer Gets Indicted

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When a lawyer gets indicted, they put their clients’ cases in serious jeopardy. Any legal issues associated with a lawyer may influence the judge to believe that even the client is not obliged to the law. Sadly, if a judge views your case from this perspective, it can be hard to obtain a fair ruling. If you find out that your lawyer is facing any legal issue, consider hiring the services of a different legal professional.

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On March 15th, 2020 our State and City closed due to the COVID-19 crisis.  Many businesses were shut and sadly thousands of New Yorkers were unemployed or furloughed.  Many of those were clients of Leav & Steinberg, LLP.  Those clients had been seriously injured prior to this health crisis and had relied upon Leav & Steinberg and its staff to be there to help them obtain complete justice.  While our firm had to work remotely, our entire staff and attorneys committed to continuing the tradition we have had for the last 21 years: By providing excellent lawyering and exceptional customer service Leav & Steinberg, will be the premier firm in New York for representing all New Yorker’s who have been injured and deserve justice.  Below is just a sampling of the matters we have resolved during the COVID-19 crisis up to April 29th, 2020.

  1. $812,000.00 settlement at a virtual court conference and virtual mediation for a 65 year-old retired Department of Education aide.  Client slipped a fell on water leaking from a hole in the lobby of her building caused by a plumbing leak.  The building owner and a contractor were aware of the condition prior to the accident.  Client did not report the accident but did seek emergency treatment the next day for neck pain.  Client eventually underwent cervical spinal surgery.  The defense argued her cervical problems were pre-existing as she had treated for her neck and her lower back prior to this.  The client was on dialysis and was suffering from other unrelated illnesses.  Further, unrelated to the accident, the client was diabetic, suffered renal failure, and was on was on dialysis.
  2. $225,000.00 settlement at virtual mediation for a Plaintiff was lawfully operating her motor vehicle when she was rear ended by a truck.  The truck argued that it did not see the plaintiff’s vehicle and as a result our firm moved and won summary judgment.  The client sustained a knee injury and underwent arthroscopic surgery; but no tear was found.  We were able to show the films and reports to an expert radiologist who opined that other injuries were sustained.
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Beginning in 2020, all of us here at Leav & Steinberg, LLP made a promise to our clients: With excellent lawyering and exceptional customer service, Leav & Steinberg will continue to be one of the premier firms in New York. While many firm in New York and across the country, find January to be particularly slow, our firm has continued where we left off in 2019; always prepared to go to trial and only when the  provides complete justice for our clients.

Here are just a few highlights of matters resolved this month:

$1,435,000 for a man who had to undergo spinal surgery after a car accident- the defendant challenged whether his injuries were related or serious

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Waivers of liability were designed to inform participants of hazards involved with certain activities and protect the individual or company from lawsuits in the event of injury. However, they’re sometimes abused by companies who use the waivers to dodge all responsibility, even in the case of negligence. And, in some instances, waivers of liability are not enforceable in New York. While there are many reasons a party can be found responsible despite the use of a waiver, there are three circumstances that typically nullify waivers of liability.

You Paid for the Service or Activity

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It’s not uncommon to be asked to sign waivers of liability at gyms, skating rinks, pools, and other amusement facilities. However, if you paid for entry into these venues, the owners or operators are not exempt from negligence claims under New York law. In these cases, the waivers exist simply to make attendees or participants believe that their legal rights are limited.

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If you have little to no experience with legal procedures, you may be hesitant about your initial consultation with a lawyer. Attorneys are a great resource for legal advice and can answer your questions, but the initial consultation is usually more productive when the clients come prepared. Here are a few steps you should take in advance of your meeting to ensure you get the most out of it.

Come Organized

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Coming into the office organized can help you have a successful initial consultation. Have your notes in order and bring any relevant documentation you think will be useful in discussing your case. The more information you have, the better. We’ll be able to sort through it all and tell you what’s relevant and helpful.

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When a person is injured in an accident caused by another person or entity, he or she can recover damages for pain and suffering as well as other costs. In New York, the court award for pain and suffering in a personal injury case depends on the extent of the injury and the future prognosis, including the psychological and emotional as well as physical impact. If you or a loved one pursues a personal injury claim because of a negligent action by an individual, business, or organization, the court will consider proof of pain and suffering when determining the final damage amount.

Expert Testimony

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Gather documents from health care providers that detail the physical and mental effects of the accident. Your medical doctor must include information about how the injury has impacted your ability to function and the surgeries, treatments, and pain-relieving measures that will be required as you recover. If you are experiencing psychological effects related to the accident, seek care from a mental health provider such as a psychiatrist or therapist. He or she can provide notes about how the trauma has impacted your emotions, cognition, and overall mental health, including depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress symptoms that have arisen after the accident.

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If you or a loved one has been injured in a natural disaster, it can be challenging to bring your case to court. However, in circumstances in which the injury cannot be attributed simply to an “act of nature,” the negligence of an individual or organization may be to blame.

Protections Under Insurance

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Insurance companies can be difficult to work with, especially when it comes to receiving benefits. When you enroll in an insurance plan, carriers often make the information they want you to see obvious while hiding the fine print and legal jargon in case you ever need the coverage. Many people don’t realize the importance of having a trusted insurance representative or understanding the details of their policies until they need benefits, only to be turned down by their insurance company. A trusted lawyer can help you determine if you have a case against the insurance carrier.

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If a claimant doesn’t file their case within the specified time limit, they will not be able to seek compensation for their damages in court. Understanding how the statute of limitations works and how long it lasts for different claims can determine what relief is available to an injured party.

General Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury

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Personal injury is a type of tort law, which imposes liability on actors who breach a duty of care owed to the injured party. Most personal injury cases get to court under a claim that someone breached their duty of care by acting negligently and that the negligent act was the cause of someone else’s injury. The general statute of limitations for negligence claims in New York is three years, meaning an injured party has three years to file their claim, starting from the day of the accident. This three-year period applies to slip-and-fall cases, products liability, and most other negligence claims.

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It was just over 20 years ago that Daniel Leav & Edward Steinberg decided to venture out on their own and start a firm.  For several years it was just them and a small support staff; employee #1 hired in October 1999 and still with the firm today.   The firm has grown into a staff totaling 25 employees including 9 attorney’s.  We proudly celebrate our 20th anniversary in 2019.  As a measure of our success, the firm continues to get most of its clients from old happy clients as well as from other attorney’s who wish to have Leav & Steinberg, LLP handle their personal injury matters.

We are also proud to advise that we started off this year with record number of resolved matters including several million dollar cases.  Some of interest are:

$2.3 million for a  NJ resident, in his mid 20’s who was struck by a Canadian truck while driving on the NYS Thruway.  We were able to bring this action in the Southern District of New York and the matter proceeded to trial before being settled at private mediation.  The client had sustained a shoulder injury and also underwent a lumbar surgery.  The matter was referred to us by a NJ Law Firm that realized that while they could handle the matter in Federal Court, they wanted the expertise and experience of Leav & Steinberg to maximize the recovery for the client.

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Electronic cigarettes continue to grow in popularity despite significant health dangers.  According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) “E-cigarettes produce an aerosol by heating a liquid that usually contains nicotine, flavorings, and other chemicals that help to make the aerosol.”[1] Electronic cigarettes come in a variety of sweet flavors and are being designed to be discrete. As many readers may be aware, a highly popular electronic cigarette, JUUL is designed to look like USB drives.  “According to the manufacturer, a single JUUL pod contains as much nicotine as a pack of 20 regular cigarettes.”[2]

As the popularity of electronic cigarettes grows so does our knowledge of the health risks.  A recent study from the American Journal of Preventive Medicine finds association between electronic cigarette use and myocardial infarction (heart attacks).  The surveys found that “Daily e-cigarette use was independently associated with increased odds of having had a myocardial infarction.”[3]

A UC San Francisco survey of nearly 70,000 people found that every day use of e-cigarettes can nearly double the odds of a heart attack. [4]  “While e-cigarettes deliver lower levels of carcinogens than conventional cigarettes, they both deliver ultrafine particles – which are 1/50 to 1/100 the size of human hair – and other toxins that have been linked to increased cardiovascular and non-cancer lung disease risks.”[5]

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