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Holiday Accident Claims In New York – How To Claim Compensation? – How Much Can I Claim?

New York is one of the most popular destinations for UK tourists visiting the USA with plenty of sightseeing opportunities, some of world’s biggest shops and some of the best restaurants in the world. The relatively short flight time makes New York more popular than other US destinations and most people who visit don’t have any problems during their stay but for some, problems do occur, and they need to file a New York holiday accident claim for compensation.

Holiday accident claims New York

Holiday accident claims New York

If you’ve been involved in an accident while on holiday in New York, and it was somebody else’s fault, then this guide will show how you can claim for compensation, what type of accidents can occur and how Legal Expert can help with your claim. Our team, based here in the UK, can help with all personal injury claims that happened in New York so give us a call on 0800 073 8804 or, if you’d like to know more, then please keep reading.

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A guide to holiday accident claims in New York

New York, commonly referred to as ‘The Big Apple’ is one of the most famous cities in the world. It’s had songs and films written about it and because of its fame tourists flock there in their thousands every day. It is such a busy city that it’s perhaps no surprise that holiday accident claims in New York are fairly common in all sorts of locations across New York.

This guide will describe the types of accident that can happen in New York (including road traffic accidents, hotel accidents, food poisoning and slips, trips and falls), the common types of injuries and how you can use Legal Expert to claim compensation for you when you return to the UK.

It’s worth noting that there’s no free healthcare in New York and so there’s a section describing how to get medical treatment later in this guide but it’s suffice to say that you should ensure you take out travel insurance that includes medical care before you travel.

What should you do if injured abroad in New York?

When you’re involved in an accident while visiting New York there are a number of things you should do if you plan to make a compensation claim. Firstly, before thinking about any claim you need to ensure that you, or anyone in your group who have been injured, are safe and gets medical treatment if needed.

We cover medical care in more detail later but, as there’s no equivalent to the NHS in New York, you should contact your insurer as soon as possible to let them know that you need treatment. They may have specific locations that you can go to for treatment and may not cover the cost of treatment if you use another hospital or healthcare provider.

Once you’ve been treated then, to make any compensation claim easier, you should:

  • Contact your tour operator to let them know you’ve been involved in an accident (if you’ve booked package holiday then this guide will help). By contacting them your accident will be logged and this can be used as evidence when making your claim.
  • Try to record the scene of the accident in some way, either a photograph or video, and try to ensure that it is clear what the cause of the accident was i.e. if you were involved in a car crash in New York then try to take a photograph that shows both cars, the number plate of the other car and the layout of the road.
  • Ask for any witnesses contact details and, if possible, ask them to email you a statement of what they saw while it’s still fresh in their mind. Witnesses add credibility to your claim especially if they are independent (i.e. not related to you).

There is more information about making a claim for accidents on holiday in this useful article but the main advice, when considering personal injury claims in New York, is that the accident needs to because of somebody else’s mistake or negligence and the more evidence you can gather the easier the claim will be to prove.

Emergency services in New York City

In New York the emergency services are all contacted using a single number. Dial 911 from any landline, mobile or payphone and you’ll be connected to an operator who will be able to direct your call to the relevant department (either the Police, Ambulance Service or Fire Service).

Importantly, if you have to be taken to a hospital, you should contact you travel insurer as soon as possible and have your insurance documents with you at all times as the hospital may need evidence of cover before they can treat you.

In extreme circumstances you may need to contact the British Consulate General in New York. They offer support, to British citizens, in emergencies such as if you’ve been attacked or if somebody has died in the accident.

If you need to call the emergency services on 911 then stay calm, describe your situation clearly and the operator will ensure you get the service you need as quickly as possible.

The cost of medical treatment in New York

As with the rest of America, there is no free medical care provided by the state. If you need treatment of any kind, you’ll either need to pay for it yourself or have comprehensive insurance that includes medical cover. You could even be charged for using an Ambulance so medical insurance is essential.

It is best to carry your insurance documents with you at all time as, if you do need treatment, you will probably need to show the hospital that you have enough cover to pay for the treatment. Also, your travel insurer should provide a 24-hour hotline which you should store in your mobile phone and call them as soon as possible if treatment is required.

What are the time limits for making a personal injury claim in New York?

There are strict timescales for lodging a personal injury claim in New York. These timescales start from the date the accident happened, so you should ensure you contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as you return to the UK if you want to make a claim.

The table below shows the types of claim you can make and the time limit for each claim.

Personal Injury Claim TypeTime Limit For Submitting Your Claim
Personal injury sustained in New York when booked through a UK package holiday company.3 Years
A non-package holiday personal injury claim for accidents in New York 2 Years Estimate ( Please Confirm This Is Accurate With a New York Based Lawyer )
A non-package holiday personal injury sustained on a flight to New York 2 Years Estimate ( Please Confirm This Is Accurate With a New York Based Lawyer )

If you file too late, even a day past the deadline, then your claim will be automatically rejected so please contact Legal Expert as soon as possible to make your New York holiday accident claim.

When can I claim compensation against a package holiday provider to New York?

Package holidays are defined as holidays where you get more than one element of your holiday from the same provider and are covered by special regulations which help when making compensation claims if you’re injured or become ill. For instance, if you buy the hotel and flights from the same operator then it would be deemed a package holiday.

Some popular package holiday providers who organise holidays to New York include:

  • TUI
  • Virgin Holidays
  • Thomas Cook
  • Thomson
  • Jet2Holidays
  • Lastminute
  • Travel Republic

Other package holiday providers also fly to New York and the most important thing to remember is that if you are involved in an accident or become ill then you should contact your provider and let them know

Different types of New York holiday accident claims we conduct

The next part of our guide will cover the different holiday accident claims in New York, what causes them what you should do if you’re involved in one. We’ll cover road traffic accidents in New York, hotel accidents, food poisoning, activity-based accidents as well as slips, trips and falls which can happen just about anywhere during your stay in New York.

New York hotel accident claims

When you stay in a hotel you expect it to be well run, clean, safe and risk-free even when you stay at a budget or low-end hotel. If an accident happens during your stay, which was somebody else’s fault (hotel staff) then you could make a New York holiday compensation claim to recoup your financial losses and also to cover the pain, suffering and any ongoing care costs that you’ve incurred.

The types of accidents that can happen in New York hotels, as well as elsewhere, include:

  • Injuries caused by slipping, tripping or even items falling on you. If you’ve tripped over and injured yourself because the hotel failed to do something, like cleaning up a wet floor or putting out wet floor signs while cleaning, then they could be liable for your injury and compensation can be sought from the hotel owner.
  • Illnesses caused by water or swimming pool contamination can be particularly traumatic as some infections caused by germs can mean you have to remain in your hotel room, spend time in a hospital or even delay your trip home, all of which will ruin your holiday
  • Food poisoning illnesses cause the same problem as above. Hotel owners have a duty of care to all customers to provide properly cooked food that is contamination free and has been stored properly. If you become ill while staying at a hotel in New York you should contact your health insurance provider and, if the hospital or doctor diagnose food poisoning, then you can begin a New York holiday illness claim when you return to the UK.

These types of injuries and illnesses can lead to expensive treatment costs so it’s worth re-iterating the requirement for a comprehensive level of insurance cover for your trip to New York.

Can you sue for food poisoning in New York?

We previously mentioned briefly, in the hotel accidents section, the effect that food poisoning can have on your holiday. Restaurants, cafes, diners and bars all have the same duty to protect visitors as a hotel does and hygiene inspectors check the quality of food in spot-checks throughout the year.

The main causes of food poisoning are when food is prepared in unhygienic kitchens, hasn’t been stored at the correct temperature or is under-cooked. We’ve written another guide about restaurant compensation claims but if, after being treated by a doctor or hospital who recorded food poisoning as the reason for your illness, you want to make a compensation claim then please get in touch with Legal Expert who can help with any personal injury claim for illnesses or accidents that happened in New York.

It is possible to make claims for food poisoning illnesses in New York but you do need to have been treated by a medical professional, in most cases, so that medical records can substantiate your claim.

Common causes of slip or fall injuries in New York

Slipping or tripping can seem like an innocuous little accident but in truth can lead to some of the most painful injuries like broken elbows, hips, knees or spinal damage and head injuries all of which can lead to months of treatment, time off work and sometimes, in the most severe injuries a simple fall can have a life-changing impact.

The types of accidents that could be somebody else’s fault, and lead to a compensation claim, include:

  • Damaged roads, kerbs or pathways: If, for example, you’ve tripped on a raised paving slab then the business or local authority responsible for the area could be to blame for not maintaining the path properly.
  • Slippery floors: You may have tripped on a floor that was wet, in a shopping mall, for instance, because it’s raining outside, and other customers have made the area wet. The shopping mall owner has a duty to keep the floor safe, regardless of the reason the water got there and so you could make a claim for compensation.
  • Damaged handrails or flooring: If you’ve tripped over in a hotel, shop or other building and you believe it’s because a handrail was damaged, or the flooring was uneven then this could be another reason to claim from the owner of the building.

In all of these scenarios you should seek treatment, following advice from your insurer, to treat your injuries and then, where possible, try to get photographic evidence to support your accident compensation claim showing the fault, defect or reason for your accident as this will really help with your personal injury claim in New York.

Accidents caused by other service providers in New York

A lot of the accidents listed above will be covered by the package holiday regulations detailed earlier but there are other types of accidents that Legal Expert can still help with, even if you booked the activity yourself.

For instance:

  • If you are injured on public transport while sightseeing in New York.
  • If you are involved in a car accident while travelling in a Taxi (rather than a hire car).
  • You may sustain an injury while visiting a theatre show that you booked yourself.
  • Or if you are injured at any of the sightseeing destinations listed below where you made the booking yourself rather than as part of your holiday booking.

There are time limits for making claims for a New York vacation injury and these may be shorter for non-package holiday claims so it’s worth beginning your claim as soon as you return to the UK. Failure to complain on time will result in a rejection from the insurer of the other party involved.

Road traffic accidents and car crash claims in New York

A report into road traffic accidents in New York for the period of 2012 to 2014 showed that the hospital costs because of those accidents was $37.5million. As prices for medical care have risen it’s fair to assume that this figure has gone up in the recent years. It re-iterates the requirement for proper medical insurance for your trip but also shows how common car crashes in New York are.

If you’re involved in a road collision, then there are a number of things that you’ll need to do. As always, your treatment needs to be arranged, dial 911 in an emergency or call your insurer and tour operator in less serious accidents.

Following that you should firstly try to get the other drivers name, address, telephone number, email address and insurance company name and contact number. As well as that you should try to photograph the scene of the accident including how the vehicles have finished following the accident and try to capture the other cars number plate in your photograph.

As mentioned previously try to get some witness statements from independent witnesses, secure any details you can from them but as a minimum their name and email address or phone number so that we can contact them, on your behalf, when you make your claim.

Finally, if your car is fitted with a dashcam or rear-view dashcam then try to obtain copies of the video footage – you may need to speak to the hire company to do this.

Do I need to use a New York solicitor or lawyer for my claim?

Clients often think that holiday accident claims in New York need to be completed by a solicitor in New York but that is definitely not the case. There is no legal requirement for your solicitor to be American, be based in America or have a company office in America.

We believe it is easier for our clients to deal with our UK based solicitors as they don’t have to deal with the time difference that they would if dealing with a New York based solicitor and our team have the knowledge to deal with the process of making claim in New York so you don’t have to deal with the hassle of complex local policies and procedures.

If you are considering making a claim for an accident that happened while in New York then our team of UK personal injury solicitors are ready to help you straight away so please get in touch.

New York no win no fee holiday accident claims

At Legal Expert we like to be fair and up-front with our customers and, unlike solicitors who charge by the hour, we don’t charge anything at all unless we successfully obtain you the compensation you deserve.

We offer a free consultation to start the process where we will discuss your claim and answer any questions that you may have and at this point we’ll let you know what our fees will be if we win your case. This amount will stay the same and therefore won’t be a surprise to you at the end of your case.

If we receive an offer of compensation for you following your accident in New York then we’ll let you know that the offer has been received, how much it is and if we think it’s fair. We can re-negotiate if we believe it is not adequate for the pain and suffering you incurred and if needs be, send the case to court (but in our experience over 99% of cases are settled out of court).

Top 16 biggest attractions in New York

Here are the 16 most popular tourist destinations in New York for your information. Your accident doesn’t have to have been at one of these places, we can file a compensation claim for any personal injury in New York which has been caused by somebody else.

  • The statue of Liberty
  • Empire state building
  • Central Park
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Times Square
  • Brooklyn Bridge
  • Rockefeller Centre
  • High Line
  • The Battery
  • Grand Central Terminal
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • Coney Island
  • Broadway
  • Chrysler Building
  • Madison Square Garden
  • Bronx Zoo

Beginning your New York City holiday accident claim

Now that you’ve read our New York holiday compensation guide we hope you’re ready to begin your claim with us here at Legal Expert. It’s easy to get in touch and our team are ready to speak with you right away. Our contact options are:

If there’s anything you’re not sure about then give the team a call, we offer a free consultation where we’ll review your accident with you and answer any questions you may have. During the consultation we’ll listen carefully to your view of how the accident happened, ask you some subsequent questions and begin to put your case together.

Useful links

Here are some links that may be useful before, during or after your trip to New York

British Consulate General New York
845 Third Avenue
New York
NY 10022
Tel: +1 212 745 0200

Opening hours: Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm.

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    Meet The Team

    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.