If you've been in an accident on the road, you know that common sense may not be the first thing you can rely on. Any sudden crash can shake you and leave you feeling less than composed. This is why it is important to know what to do in the case of an accident ahead of time.
Issues are different when someone other than the driver may be responsible for the crash. Did someone doing maintenance on a truck fail to replace everything that came out in the job? Did a vital part fail before a manufacturer expected it to? Another important question is who owns the vehicle and who employs the driver.
This matters because employers are liable for the activities of their employees and their equipment while they are on the job. If a car owned by the City of New York and driven by a municipal employee strikes a pedestrian, for example, the city's government may be the defendant in a lawsuit after the fact.
Recordkeeping is very important in these cases, including police reports and anything submitted by the driver of the city vehicle. It may also matter which agency operates the vehicle and retains the employee, because many different municipal and state authorities operate in New York.
An attorney can help establish these facts as well as organize the evidence required for a settlement or civil action in court. Legal representation is almost always useful in a difficult time after a car crash when people need to focus on recovery and keeping their lives on track.