During the holiday season, the demand for limousine services always skyrocket. These luxurious vehicles, stocked with treats, champagne, and built-in entertainment systems, take passengers to and from airports, hotels, and party venues. Many would argue that no holiday bash is complete without a ride in a sleek and graceful stretch limo.

When passengers, drivers and carrier companies abide by reasonable safety standards, limo rides are enjoyable and memorable. But failure to keep safety in mind at all times can lead to serious accidents and major injuries. Examples of unsafe conditions and behaviors include:

  • Speeding and/or aggressive driving
  • The limo driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Rowdy passengers
  • Vehicle overcrowding
  • Driver fatigue or inexperience
  • Negligent hiring practices
  • Poorly maintained and/or defective vehicles

When collisions or vehicle roll-overs occur, common injuries include:

  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Fractures
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Facial lacerations
  • Loss of one or more limbs
  • Death

New York’s No-Fault law requires the limousine company’s insurance policy to compensate injured passengers for their medical bills and lost wages. The state Taxi and Limousine Commission requires all limo providers to be members of the New York Black Car Operators’ Injury Compensation Fund, Inc., so if a driver is injured in the course of their employment, then they are entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits. This will cover their medical bills, physical therapy costs, lost wages, and occasionally award a lump sum if the driver is left permanently disabled.

The downside is that the limo insurance company will only pay a certain amount for medical expenses, cover lost wages for three years’ maximum, and compensate passengers nominally for incidental costs. The payout can be comparatively low considering that certain injuries can incur huge medical bills as well as pain and suffering (both physical and emotional). Therefore, accident victims who meet the criteria of a “serious injury” can file a personal injury lawsuit to get the compensation they need.

Damages awarded in a limousine accident lawsuit can include:

  • Past, present and future medical expenses
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Loss of present and future income and opportunities
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Wrongful death expenses such as funeral costs

If you have been injured in a New York limousine accident, then contact a personal injury attorney immediately. They will help you identify who is at fault (the driver, limo company and/or the company it uses to maintain its fleet, or drivers of other vehicles), collect the medical evidence and experts needed to prove the extent of your injuries. When your life is seriously impacted by someone else’s negligence, you deserve to receive the financial resources you need to move your life forward. Jayson Lutzky may be able to obtain a cash settlement to cover compensation for past and future pain and suffering, medical bills and lost wages. Mr. Lutzky is an accident attorney with more than 33 years of experience. Call 718-514-6619 to set up an in-office appointment. Initial consultations are free of charge. Visit www.MyNewYorkCityLawyer.com to learn more.