Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP by cjleclaire
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Texting and Driving FAQs
by cjleclaire
Jun 14, 2018 | 40557 views | 0 0 comments | 743 743 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Texting and Driving Is the Most Alarming Form of Distracted Driving

Texting and driving includes reading text messages, emails or online material or writing or composing messages on a mobile device while driving. The federal government defines texting and driving as distracted driving.

Why is texting the most alarming distraction to driving?

Research shows that reading or sending a text takes the drivers eyes off the road for about five seconds. For a car traveling at 55 miles per hour, five seconds is tantamount to going from one end of a football field to the other while your eyes are shut.

What do statistics reveal about texting and driving?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the following statistics indicate the extent of danger:

Approximately 1,000 people in the U.S. suffer injury and nine die every day as a result of accidents involving distracted drivers.

In 2015, 391,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents.

During daylight hours, approximately 481,000 drivers use cell phones or electronic devices while driving.

The age group that uses handheld cell phones the most while driving are drivers between the ages of 16 and 24. Incidentally, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19 are the most at risk, in fact they are three times more at risk of being in a car crash than any other age group.

How is distracted driving a factor in a personal injury car accident lawsuit?

Under New York law, when a person suffers a serious injury that meets the standards of the severe injury threshold, the injured party can sue the negligent party responsible for the accident to recover compensation. Lawyers must prove negligence on the part of the party being sued, and traffic violations such as texting and driving provide evidence that the distracted party was at fault.

Under New York law you cannot use a hand-held cell phone or portable electronic device while driving. Illegal actions on a mobile device include:

  • Talking on a handheld device
  • Composing, sending, reading, accessing, browsing, transmitting, saving or retrieving electronic data such as email, text messages or web pages
  • Viewing, taking or transmitting images
  • Playing games

The only acceptable actions an individual can do using a portable electronic device while driving is calling 911 or contacting medical, fire or police personnel about an emergency. (New York State, Department of Motor Vehicles)

Seek legal help if you’ve suffered a serious injury in a car accident caused by a distracted driver.

At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP , we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your injuries and evaluate your potential case.

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Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP Settles $1.3 Million for Construction Worker Injury Prior to Trial
by cjleclaire
Feb 23, 2018 | 50679 views | 0 0 comments | 700 700 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP successfully negotiated a $1.3 million settlement for a 41 year-old Asian male construction worker, who was injured while performing asbestos removal work at an upstate construction site. The injured client fell from a 6-foot extension ladder while affixing a heavy tarp across the top of a large 13-foot high, 100-yard long dumpster, for the purpose of preventing asbestos materials from spewing out of the dumpster.

The worker suffered injuries to his back, knees and shoulder and was caused to undergo multiple surgeries.

The Basis for Recovery of Damages in this Construction Worker Injury Case

Based on New York State Labor Law, all contractors, property owners and their agents are responsible for providing safe scaffolding, ladders and other equipment so workers are protected. The law is very specific as to the responsibilities involved regarding safe construction work conditions.

Our attorneys argued that the general contractor violated New York State’s Labor Law by failing to provide the proper equipment to our client. We utilized two experts, an economist and a vocational rehabilitation specialist to establish the extent of our clients’ injuries and damages.

The argument was effective and enabled us to reach a $1.3 million settlement on behalf of our client prior to going to trial.

Construction Worker Injury Cases

Construction workers whose jobs require them to work at elevations above the ground are particularly at risk for injuries. Falling from any height often results in serious injuries, and for this reason, NY laws offer protection so that reasonable precautions are taken to make the worker’s job as safe as possible. Even so, in an effort to increase profits, sometimes business owners and contractors cut costs, and doing so can result in devastating accidents for workers.

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP has extensive experience handling serious injury cases where construction workers fall from heights. If you have suffered severe injury in a construction accident, find out how we can help.

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Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP Recovers $700,000 in a Settlement Prior to Trial
by cjleclaire
Feb 16, 2018 | 48063 views | 0 0 comments | 1391 1391 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP recovered $700,000 for a 43-year-old Asian male sign installer in a settlement prior to trial. The sign installer fell from a 16-foot extension ladder at a renovation site while he was removing a 20-foot-long sign from the building. He suffered from a fractured ankle and required surgery.

How Our Firm Established Liability Under New York Labor Law

New York Labor Law 240 states the following:

“All contractors and owners and their agents, except owners of one and two-family dwellings who contract for but do not direct or control the work, in the erection, demolition, repairing, altering, painting, cleaning or pointing of a building or structure shall furnish or erect, or cause to be furnished or erected for the performance of such labor, scaffolding, hoists, stays, ladders, slings, hangers, blocks, pulleys, braces, irons, ropes, and other devices which shall be so constructed, placed and operated as to give proper protection to a person so employed.”

Prior to filing the lawsuit, our construction accident attorneys attempted to negotiate a settlement with the tenant, who had acted as the owner’s agent; however, the tenant refused to settle. Our firm entered a motion for Summary Judgment based on the fact that the tenant violated New York Labor law by failing to provide the proper equipment for our client. A summary judgment motion is an argument that the other party has no case and requests that the court decide the case based on the facts submitted. The court decided in favor of the Summary Judgment, and the case was settled through mediation, which awarded our client $700,000 in compensation for losses.

Have You Been Injured in a Construction Accident?

New York labor laws offer substantial protection for construction workers. If you suffer injury in a construction accident, you should seek legal advice and find out about your rights to recover damages. At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP , we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your accident and the prospects of pursuing a case.

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When Should You Hire a Personal Injury Law Firm to Handle Your Accident Case?
by cjleclaire
Feb 08, 2018 | 34302 views | 0 0 comments | 637 637 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

If you have been in an accident and suffered serious injury, there is a good likelihood that you have considerable expenses involved with your recovery — hospital bills, doctor bills, rehabilitation and possibly even future disability, more surgeries and more bills. It is important to understand that the insurance company’s priority is its bottom line, and if insurance companies can avoid paying for expenses, they will. Whenever they can reduce their payouts, they will also do so.

If your injuries are minor, you probably do not need personal injury representation, but if your injuries are serious, reasons to hire an attorney are numerous.

A Personal Injury Law Firm Can Settle or Litigate a Case

While you may be aware that someone else was at fault for your accident, perhaps you do not know whether your case is worth litigating.

  • Does enough evidence exist to hold the other party accountable?
  • If the party offers to settle, is the settlement amount adequate and will it cover your expenses?
  • What is the extent of your serious injury?
  • What should you say in the police report or what should tell the insurance company?

Even before you recover, you will receive paperwork work and have to make important decisions. All these are questions and issues an attorney can address and handle for you.

Accident Investigations

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP has an investigative team to gather information and help build cases. Our private investigators can visit the accident scene and make inquiries to discover other relevant information for your case. Our accident specialists can reconstruct the accident, analyze the accident details and evaluate the causes of accidents.

Extensive Experience in Handling Personal Injury Cases

Our attorneys have handled accident cases similar to yours for decades. We have devised the most effective strategies to deal with insurance companies and readily anticipate their arguments. Our goal is protect your best interests and work diligently to recover the compensation you deserve.

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP was listed among the top 18 New York City accident lawyers by, and our law firm has attorneys who have received other awards and recognitions as well, such as AV ratings by Martindale-Hubbell and Super Lawyers designations.


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What Are Weather Related Accidents?
by cjleclaire
Jan 25, 2018 | 39121 views | 0 0 comments | 685 685 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Weather related accidents are something to be concerned about, and statistics back up this fact.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, weather related crashes are accidents that take place in harmful weather conditions (rain, sleet, snow, fog, severe crosswinds or blowing sand/snow/debris) or on slick pavement due to rain, snow, slush or ice.

What are the statistics? On the average 5,748,000 vehicle accidents occur every year in the U.S. and 22 percent of them (approximately 1,259,000) are weather related crashes. In addition, close to 6,000 people are killed and more than 445,000 people suffer injuries annually due to adverse weather.

How Do Adverse Weather Accidents Break Down?

Here are the percentages of accidents occurring:

  • On wet pavement— 73%
  • During rainfall — 46%
  • During snow/sleet — 17%
  • During fog — 3%

(Based on 10-year averages from 2005 through 2015)

However, these are national averages, and keep in mind the fact that some states do not get snowfall to any great degree, which may be the reason that snow/sleet have a lower accident percentage.

The Year 2018 Began with Cold Harsh Winter Weather in New York City Areas

A heavy snowstorm in early January dumped up to 13 inches of snow and resulted in more than 2,000 air flight cancellations. Winds in Queens reached close to 50 miles per hour, and snow fell at the rate of two inches an hour in Manhattan.

The New York governor declared a state of emergency for all of Long Island, New York City and Westchester County.

Unfortunately, quite a few Suffolk County residents ignored the weather conditions along with the warning to prevent accidents and injuries. A number of drivers got into accidents and became stranded as the snow kept falling.

NYC mass transit subways continued to operate but weather conditions resulted in track switch, signal and train car malfunctions.

Have Your Suffered Injury or Lost a Loved One in a Winter Accident?

If you have suffered injury or lost a loved one in a deadly crash, consult with an experienced accident attorney to find out about your legal rights. In many cases accident victims or families are able to recover compensation for medical and other accident related damages.

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP focuses its practice primarily on personal injury cases.

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Driving Tips for Winter Weather
by cjleclaire
Dec 29, 2017 | 38405 views | 0 0 comments | 745 745 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Driving in winter weather can be a challenge and understanding some basic ideas about how to drive on ice or in snow can help prevent accidents. Treacherous winter driving conditions range from freezing rain, sleet, snow or simply temperature drops where wet surfaces turn icy.

Driving Tips for Snowy Weather

AAA recommends the following tips for driving in snowy, winter weather.

  • Press down slowly on the gas pedal or brake. Fast acceleration can make you skid or spin. Allow enough time to stop slowly.
  • Drive slowly. Driving slowly helps you have enough time to maneuver for gradual acceleration and stopping.
  • Increase your driving distance between cars. Understand that you should increase the distance for stopping within three to four seconds to eight to ten seconds.
  • Apply smooth brake pressure. Rest the heel of your foot on the floor and press the brake pedal with the ball of your foot for gradual braking.
  • Avoid stopping. If at all possible, avoid stopping in snowy weather and keep rolling. For example, roll up to a traffic light so slowly that you can keep rolling until the light changes.
  • Do not accelerate up hills. You can easily go into a spin when accelerating too much as you climb a hill.
  • Do not stop when going up a hill. If the hill is icy, it is difficult to keep the car from spinning as you press the gas pedal to start the car moving again.
  • Stay home whenever possible. The best way to avoid snowy weather accidents is to avoid driving in snow. Stay at home if at all possible.

Have You Been Injured During Winter Weather Through the Fault of Another Driver?

If you have suffered serious injury, you may be able to recover compensation for damages. At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your accident and the prospects of pursuing a case.


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Avoid Drunk Drivers During the Holiday Season
by cjleclaire
Dec 19, 2017 | 38207 views | 0 0 comments | 731 731 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Thanksgiving marked the beginning of the holiday season, which ends after New Years Day. Everyone gets excited, and typically, this is a festive time with lots of parties, gift giving, dining out and drinking alcoholic beverages.

However despite the good cheer, statistics also show that binge drinking spikes during the holidays, so much so that it makes the rest of the year pale by comparison. More drunk drivers are on the roads than any other time, which puts people at risk for accidents.

Drunk Drivers Statistics from Thanksgiving to New Years

Alcohol Monitoring Systems (AMS) , runs a campaign called “Sober Days for the Holidays.” According to AMS, DUI rates and deaths increase during the holiday season.

AMS monitored more than 360,000 drunk drivers who were at high risk for alcohol consumption. They discovered that the five-week period between Thanksgiving and New Years had 33% more violations than any other time of the year. The monitoring was for drivers who knew they were subjected to tests every 30 minutes, understood they would be arrested for DUI and could be sure they would face legal consequences, such as jail time. Despite all these deterrents, they could not stop themselves from drinking.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that between Thanksgiving and Christmas 728 people will die or suffer injury, and this statistic is double or triple the rest of the year.

As a way to avoid drunk driving during the holiday season, be sure to designate drivers and put transportation plans in place before drinking alcohol. If you see a car weaving in a lane or other evidence of drunken driving, keep your distance.

Consult with Experienced Personal Injury Lawyers

Our attorneys at Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP have decades of experience representing clients in vehicle accident cases. When another party appears to be at fault, by investigating the accident, we can often establish liability and help you recover compensation.

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Slip and Fall Accident: Woman’s Fall Down Cellar Results in Serious Injury
by cjleclaire
Oct 27, 2017 | 37739 views | 0 0 comments | 698 698 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

You may think of a slip and fall accident as not being serious, but people often suffer severe injuries from slip and fall accidents. Some even die from concussions.

Slip and Fall Accident Caught on Video

An unusual slip and fall accident occurred with a woman last June in Plainfield, N.J in front of Acme Windows on Somerset Street. CBS New York  reported that a 67-year old woman tripped over a cellar door that was left open and fell into a basement. The accident was caught on video. She appears to be looking at her cell phone right before the fall, and most people would conclude she was simply distracted and did not see the open door.

What people watching the video would not realize though was that the woman was legally blind and a diabetic.

The woman’s son said she eats regularly and checks her sugar periodically. When she felt slightly nauseous, she checked her phone to see what the time was. Seconds later she fell. Fire crews arrived to rescue her and pulled her out on a stretcher.

The woman’s blindness makes it difficult for her to see blended colors, according to her son. Workers doing pipe repairs had left the cellar doors open. If they had put out colored cones, she probably would have been alerted to the open doors.

The woman suffered a serious injury but later her condition became stable.

Legal Implications Involved in Slip and Fall Accidents

Property owners have a have a legal responsibility to ensure there are no hazards for people coming onto their property. In this case city workers are responsible for creating a safe environment. The handicaps of disabled people are something that people who do not have disabilities may not take into consideration.

If you experience a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property and you consider property conditions were unsafe, get a legal opinion.

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP  has decades of experience representing clients in all kinds of cases. We can investigate an accident, establish liability and help you recover compensation to offset damages.


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Tesla Fatal Car Crash: NTSB Reveals Need for Safeguards
by cjleclaire
Oct 19, 2017 | 40642 views | 0 0 comments | 688 688 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigated the Tesla fatal car crash that occurred in May of 2016. The Tesla semi-automated car driven by Joshua Brown crashed into a tractor-trailer and hit it broadside as the trailer made a left turn. More than a year later after the crash, in September 2017, the NTSB stated that Tesla should have had more operation limitations on drivers of semi-automatic cars.

Facts About the Tesla Fata Car Crash

The New York Post reported that the accident occurred in Williston, Florida (southwest of Gainesville) at an intersection. Joshua Brown had set the cruise control for 74 mph two minutes before the crash occurred. The speed limit was 65 mph and neither the driver nor the autopilot sensors noticed the tractor-trailer and consequently neither applied the brakes. An under-ride accident occurred with the car passing under the trailer.

Tesla’s Response to the Accident

In June 2016, Tesla said that Autopilot “is not perfect and still requires the driver to remain alert.”

Brown’s family released a state in September that stated, “We heard numerous times that the car killed our son. That is simply not the case,” the family’s statement said. “There was a small window of time when neither Joshua nor the Tesla features noticed the truck making the left-hand turn in front of the car.”

The statement went on to say, “People die every day in car accidents. Change always comes with risks, and zero tolerance for deaths would totally stop innovation and improvements.”

The family’s lawyer and spokesperson for Tesla declined to answer whether Tesla and the family had reached a legal settlement.

NTSB Holds Tesla Accountable

Certainly the truck driver and car driver had responsibility in not noticing each other’s vehicles. However, the NTSB also holds Tesla accountable. The Board believes the car needs safeguards such as the following:

  • Ensuring drivers paid attention and preventing over reliance on the automatic driving.
  • Allowing drivers only to use the system on highways and limited-access roads as the owner’s manual recommends.
  • Restricting use on roadways with cross traffic since the autopilot system does not reliably detect cross traffic.
  • Including further limitations to prevent drivers from misusing the system.

Semi-automatic cars are the bridge between driver controlled cars and completely automated cars. Accidents can occur until the correct balance is achieved and automation changes can actually prevent human errors.

Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP focuses its practice primarily on personal injury cases.

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by cjleclaire
Sep 25, 2017 | 49629 views | 0 0 comments | 1048 1048 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Crane accidents in the construction industry are relatively common, and this is because of the inherent dangers involved with operating cranes.

In June of 2017, PIX 11 reported a crane accident in Queens, where two injured workers were in critical condition and rushed to a hospital. The third worker, who was finally also extracted, was in serious condition and hospitalized. The accident occurred at 31-25 28th Road in Astoria. The crane’s load fell through the building after being placed on the roof. The roof caved in and trapped the workers.

Crane Collapse

At first, reporters thought the crane load accident was caused by crane collapse. This assumption was not unusual because crane collapse happens fairly often in the construction industry. Live Science  published an article about Phillip Ezzell, a former crane operator and the CEO of Crane Safety Associates of America, and he said that crane collapse accidents are an inherent danger in construction projects.

To make his point, he gave various examples of crane accidents. One occurred in Manhattan in 2008 when a crane collapsed and killed seven people and injured more than 10 people. Then a few months later, another crane accident killed two construction workers in Manhattan. In the same year, a crane lifting beams over a Texas river from an old bridge became overloaded and collapsed, killing one worker and injuring another. During the same year, a crane collapsed in a Houston oil refinery. It killed four workers and injured seven.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) set new standards for crane safety in 2008, and violations of the safety rules, may provide grounds to take legal action for workers injured in crane accidents.

Get Legal Help with Crane Accident and Construction Accident Injuries

If you suffered serious injury in a crane accident or construction accident, get a legal opinion about pursuing compensation.  Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP  offers a free consultation to discuss a potential claim.

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