Jim Reed Named Among Best Lawyers in U.S. for Sixth Year In A Row

Jim Reed is managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm.

Jim Reed is Managing Partner of the Ziff Law Firm.

Jim Reed, Managing Partner of the Ziff Law Firm in Elmira, has been selected by his peers as a “Best Lawyer in America” in a national directory of top-rated attorneys for the sixth year in a row.

Jim, selected as a Best Lawyer in Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice law, was named to the 2017 Best Lawyers in America guide following a survey of lawyers in his geographical region and areas of practice. Reed was first selected for the 2012 guide.

In September 2014, Jim was named the 2015 Plaintiffs’ Lawyer of the Year by the Best Lawyers in America guide among personal injury lawyers in the Southern New York Region, based on the recommendations of lawyers in Chemung, Steuben, Tompkins, Broome and Tioga, N.Y., counties.

JIm, who has been practicing law since 1986, has argued cases at every level in the New York State court system and has successfully handled many multi-million dollar cases. His practice handles serious personal injury, bicycle accident and medical malpractice cases in NY and PA.

Jim’s leadership, experience and hard work have helped to made this the best year ever at the Ziff Law Firm, with multi-million dollar recoveries on behalf of our injured clients.

His selection as a Best Lawyer shows that he has an excellent reputation in the Twin Tiers legal community, and a trial lawyer’s reputation means everything.

Every client should care about the reputation of their lawyer because it can influence the success or failure of their case. If you have a good reputation, as Jim does, opposing counsel and judges afford you courtesy and respect. They know that every case handled by a lawyer of Jim’s stature is a good case.

Jim is also the legal expert for WETM-TV in Elmira and appears in a segment called “Law Talk” at about 12:20 p.m. each Wednesday during WETM’s noon newscast to discuss legal issues in the news.

Thank you for reading,

Adam
__________________________________________

Adam M. Gee, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Malpractice Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY  14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: [email protected]

 

 


You Have Legal Questions, We Have Answers! Welcome To The New Q&A Feature On Our Blogs

Jim Reed, managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm.

Jim Reed, managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm.

Welcome to the newest feature on our Ziff Law blogs, Q & A.

While we will answer questions about personal injury, medical malpractice and divorce law, our primary practice areas, we will also be glad to talk about car/motorcycle/truck insurance, medical bills, lost wages, property damage and any legal issue in the news.

If we aren’t able to answer your question, we will refer you to a lawyer with expertise in that particular area.

Submit your questions by email to [email protected]

Our first question is adapted from my Feb. 12 appearance on “Law Talk,” a segment during the WETM News at Noon. In “Law Talk,” the Ziff Law lawyers talk about legal issues that come up with events in the news at about 12:20 p.m. Wednesdays.

Q: A Steuben County woman was recently sentenced to three years’ probation and 200 hours of community service in connection with a teenage drinking party that ended in the death of a 16-year-old boy, who was struck and killed by a tractor trailer. The mother was charged with first-degree Unlawfully Dealing With A Child and two counts of Endangering The Welfare Of A Child because police said she attended the party with her teenage daughter and provided alcohol to the children. The boy’s family said the sentence was too light. In general, how do courts decide sentencing in a case like this?

Q&A 1A: Unlawfully Dealing With A Child means you are providing alcohol to someone under 21 years old. It is a Class A misdemeanor that carries with it a sentence of up to one year in jail or a $1,000 fine. The mother in this case received just probation and community service.

Given the fact that the sentence could have been up to a year in jail, many people may wonder, what happened?

Well, in sentencing, the judge gets a report from the county probation department called a Pre-Sentence Investigation (often called a PSI). The PSI reveals a lot of information about the defendant, including whether they have a past criminal record, and it goes into some of the circumstances in that person’s life.  The PSI also describes the victim of the crime and any damages suffered by the victim.

The judge reviews the report and he has a wide range of discretion to impose a sentence. It this case it could have been anything from probation to up to a year in jail. We call that “judicial discretion.”

There is also “prosecutorial discretion”, where prosecutors have a wide range of options on the charges. In this case, the prosecutor could have considered going for a felony, Criminally Negligent Homicide; that’s where the defendant is criminally negligent causing the death of another person. There is also a second-degree Manslaughter charge, where the defendant recklessly causes the death of another person. That is a higher-level felony.

There are a wide range of things that can happen in these types of cases.

People have to understand that when there are intoxicated minors, the consequences can be very, very serious.

People can go to jail for a long time, so my best advice is: never provide alcohol to minors!

Please appreciate that while we are happy to try to provide you some basic legal information, doing so does NOT create an attorney/client relationship (unless you formally retain us to represent you). The information provided is general information and should NOT be considered legal advice. Also appreciate that in order to give definitive legal answers, it is critically important that a lawyer meet with you to get all the necessary details to provide a definitive answer so we encourage you to review the information we are providing with your own lawyer.

Thanks for reading!

Jim
_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

 


Yellow Dot Program Could Save Lives In Vehicle Accidents And Home Emergencies, Says NY Injury Lawyer

Yellow dot mainI just learned this week about a great FREE program from the New York State Sheriffs’ Association that could help save the lives of accident victims and people having emergencies in their home in the critical first minutes as first responders arrive on the scene.

I strongly recommend joining the Yellow Dot Program today!

By putting a Yellow Dot sticker on your driver’s-side rear window, or on or beside your front door, you can also alert first responders that you or someone you love has a medical condition that needs special attention!

Remember, first responders don’t know your medical history, or the history of anyone else in your vehicle or home! So let’s arm them with potentially life-saving information!

yellow dot 3Here is how it works:

You can go to the New York State Sheriffs’ Association website and request information, or you can go to your local sheriffs’ office (see addresses below) and request a kit that contains a Yellow Dot decal and a personal information card.

You fill out the information card (both sides) and attach a recent photo. In your vehicle, put the card in the glove compartment. In the home, put it in a freezer bag and place it in a visible part of the freezer part of your refrigerator. First responders have been trained to look in these places if they see a Yellow Dot on your vehicle or front door.

You will need to fill out a card for each person in your family with special medical needs.

Here are the sheriffs’ offices in your county:

Chemung:
203 William St.
Elmira, NY 14901
(607) 737-2987

Schuyler:
106 Tenth St.
Watkins Glen, NY 14891
(607) 535-8222

Steuben:
7007 Rumsey Street Ext.
Bath, NY 14810
(607) 622-3901

Tioga, NY:
103 Corporate Drive
Owego, NY 13827
(607) 687-1010

Tompkins:
779 Warren Road
Ithaca, NY 14850
(607) 257-1345

Yates:
Yates County Sheriff’s Office
227 Main Street, Penn Yan, NY 14527
(315) 536-5172

My thanks to my colleague in Auburn, lawyer Michael Bersani of the Michaels & Smolak Law Firm, for bringing this great program to my attention.

I hope everyone reading this orders their own Yellow Dot today if they need special medical attention in an accident!

Thanks for reading!

Jim
_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

 

 


New York Crackdown On Texting Drivers Sends Right Message, Says NY Accident Lawyer

New York State's tougher texting while driving law is being enforced more across the state. Maybe drivers are starting to get the message!

Police departments in New York State handed out more than 20,000 tickets in the first year of the state’s tougher texting-while-driving ban!

That is four times the amount of tickets issued in the previous year, state officials announced, according to a story in the Star-Gazette.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the bill banning texting-while-driving a year ago after there were several fatal accidents involving teenagers who were texting while driving. The law took effect July 12, 2011.

According to the Star-Gazette story, the law allows police to pull over drivers specifically for texting. A law in 2009 made texting a secondary infraction, meaning police could only issue a ticket if a driver was pulled over for another offense, such as erratic driving.

The law also increased the penalty for drivers using a handheld device from two points to three points on their license.

We have written a lot on this blog about the dangers of texting while driving because we feel it is very dangerous. We want to continue to do our part to remind residents of Elmira, Corning and the Twin Tiers to NEVER TEXT WHILE DRIVING (OR TALK ON YOUR CELL PHONE WITHOUT A HANDS-FREE DEVICE).

In the year before the 2011 law went into effect, police issued 4,569 tickets across the state. From July 2011 through June 2012, those numbers soared to 20,958!

The local numbers are startling, too. Chemung County jumped from 27 tickets to 92 tickets, Tompkins County from 20 to 139, Tioga County from 13 to 67, and Steuben County from 14 to 108. Schuyler County apparently had little enforcement of the new law; the increase was from just three to four tickets!

More than 3,000 people died last year in accidents blamed on distracted driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Remember that texting while driving is not just about you — it’s about making sure the people driving near you – and their passengers – are safe, too! Same with pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists!

Put the comb or hairbrush down. Put the phone down. Wait until you stop to eat. If you’re sleepy, pull over and take a nap, or stop driving for the day!

Focus on the present when you are driving. That will save lives.

We have written a lot about texting while driving. You can read our latest stories here. I would encourage you to learn more about this important issue by reading our previous blog posts.

Thanks for reading, and focusing on the road!

Thanks, Jim

_________________________________
James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

 

 


Maps Of Road Fatalities A Reminder Of Toll Of Distracted Driving, Says NY and PA Accident Lawyer

Check out where fatal accidents have occurred in your community in recent years.

A United Kingdom transportation company has created a website that allows anyone to track road fatalities in the United States by location, including in Elmira, Corning and the Twin Tiers.

You can find the exact scene of an accident that led to a death between 2001 and 2009. I drilled down to the local fatalities in Elmira, Horseheads, and Corning and learned that I handled a large number of the wrongful death cases displayed on the local map.

I have worked on many cases in the last 26 years, and each of the little dots is a reminder of what I know to be devastated family and friends. … The 14-year-old cyclist mowed down by a hit-and-run driver, the elderly pedestrian hit by a driver who admitted she was busy adjusting her radio and on and on ….

It’s very unsettling and sad.

But it’s important that everyone take a look at the map of their community. Notice where people died when you look at the map of Chemung County — Lower Maple Avenue in Elmira, County Route 64 in Big Flats, Interstate 86 and the Miracle Mile (Corning Road) in Horseheads. Look at the grouping of fatalities, on I-86, Route 352 and Route 64. Those are high-traffic areas where everyone should be their most vigilant. Those should be no-distraction zones, and that means turning the radio or CD down, too!

Some of the fatalities were pedestrians, some were drivers or their passengers, and some were on motorcycles or bikes. Yes, it’s important to know where the most dangerous spots are in Watkins Glen and Southport and Pine City, then south to Towanda, Sayre and Athens, Wellsboro and Mansfield.

But there is a larger lesson here.

The maps serve as a stark reminder to all of us to SLOW DOWN and PAY ATTENTION TO THE ROAD. Shut off the cell phone. Cut down the chatter. Be vigilant. Live in the present.

Respect the lives of others, and be mindful of the dangers around you. Distracted driving kills. Next time you’re on the road, think of the people lost in accidents on that map.

Please have a safe and joyous holiday season free of heartbreaking accidents.

Thanks for reading.

Thanks, Jim

_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Mail to: [email protected]
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Web: www.zifflaw.com
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
NYBikeAccidentBlog.com


At Last! Texting While Driving Tickets Soar in NY, says NY and PA Accident Lawyer

If you are caught texting while driving now in New York, you could face much stiffer penalties than in the past.

Police officers are cracking down across New York State on texting motorists, and the number of tickets issued to distracted drivers has soared across the state in recent months.

Have you gotten the message yet and stopped texting while driving? 

As you probably know, the Ziff Law Firm has repeatedly encouraged state officials to toughen the law and then urged police to enforce it. You can see what we’ve said here and here and here.

Here are some of the findings reported in a Gannett News Service story this week in the Elmira Star-Gazette on the increase in the number of texting-while-driving tickets issued in New York State:

  • The number of tickets soared 43 percent through mid-September, compared with all of 2010, an increase from 3,248 tickets in 2010 to 4,634 tickets so far in 2011.
  • Outside New York City, the number of tickets issued for texting totaled 1,617 in 2010 and 2,777 tickets in 2011 as of Sept. 17, a 72 percent increase.
  • The number of tickets more than doubled in 33 counties, including in Chemung and Monroe, and more than tripled in other counties downstate.

The big increase comes after Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a new law in July that allows police to pull over drivers specifically for texting. That law took effect on July 12.

The initial law approved in 2009 only made texting a secondary infraction, so police could only ticket a driver if they were pulled over for another offense, such as erratic driving.

Talking on a cell phone while driving is still a more common infraction, according to Gannett. Police across the state have issued 181,400 tickets so far this year after about 332,000 were issued in 2010!

A texting while driving violation will now cost you a fine of up to $150 and three points on your license, which is the same as a speeding ticket. (Remember what THAT last speeding ticket did to your insurance bill?)

Drivers iilegally using a cell phone to talk could be issued a ticket for a traffic infraction and a $150 fine!

See this New York State website for more about the new texting while driving law. Also see this website about the state’s law on drivers using cell phones.

Anyone seeking a license in New York State must now attend a class on the dangers of distracted driving.

In the first full month of the new law, a record 1,082 tickets were issued statewide. The previous record was in April, with 689 tickets, but a special enforcement period in Syracuse drove up the numbers, Gannett reported.

“It’s a great success story,” John Grebert, executive director of the New York Police Chiefs Association, told Gannett.

The number of tickets issued in Chemung County jumped from 15 to 34 since the new law was approved. Chemung County Sheriff Christopher Moss told Gannett that the texting lookouts are now part of distracted driving enforcement funded by the state. And the county also meets with students to talk about the dangers of texting while driving!

Too many young people are not getting the message. Look at other drivers as you drive in Elmira, Corning and the Twin Tiers — too many are still texting and putting us all in danger. 

Put down the distraction and DRIVE before you cause an accident that could change your life — and the lives of others — forever.

Please! Let’s be safe on the road. For yourself, for your passengers and others on the road — INCLUDING pedestrians and bicyclists!

Thanks for reading. Please drive safely!

Jim

__________________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Mailto: [email protected]
Office: (607) 733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Web: www.zifflaw.com
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
NYBikeAccidentBlog.com


New Campaign Reminds Us – Don’t Be Distracted When You Drive, Walk Or Ride A Bike!

Typical scene at a local emergency room

A new campaign aims to cut down on accidents caused by unnecessary distractions.

We live in a world of distractions, and a new campaign launched this week in the Southern Tier aims to remind everyone – pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists – about the dangers of not paying attention.

The traffic safety boards of Chemung and Steuben counties kicked off “Be Alert, Distraction Kills” in hopes of curbing accidents.

“We had a spate of bicycle and pedestrian deaths in Elmira, but that alone was not the reason for this initiative,” Jay Schissell, vice chairman of the Chemung County Traffic Safety Board and director of the Elmira-Chemung Transportation Council, told the Star-Gazette newspaper at a news conference.

“If there’s one commonality to the crashes we’ve been having recently, it’s distraction,” he added. “Distraction on the part of all users in the transportation system.”

He’s right! We all have the potential to get distracted when we walk, ride or drive – too often by cell phones and other devices.

But it is OUR JOB (and our legal obligation) to pay attention!  Failing to do so needlessly endangers other people and it just is NOT right that we should put someone else at risk of serious injury (or death) just because we don’t care enough to pay attention!

Schissell listed some all-too-common distractions – cell phones, CD players in cars, eating, putting on makeup, wearing headphones and using illegal drugs.

We forget how dangerous distractions can be until someone gets hurt!

Law enforcement will be involved in getting the message out, too.

The Elmira Police Department used a grant to buy a distracted driving simulator to be used in classrooms.

“We don’t want it to be just a video game,” Police Chief Michael Robertson told the Star-Gazette. “We want it to be an educational tool.”

Corning Police Chief Salvatore Trentanelli said they also plan an educational campaign, adding, “However, there will be some enforcement maintained by the police agencies.”

The campaign will also include portable message signs along some roads and YouTube videos, according to news reports, but in the end, it is up to all of us to STAY FOCUSED!

“It’s not for bicyclists, it’s not for pedestrians, it’s not for motorists,” said Schissell of the campaign. “It’s for everybody.”

Let’s remember that – and BE SAFE!

To see the news reports:

Elmira Star-Gazette

The Leader in Corning

WETM-TV

WENY-TV

YNN

Thanks, Jim

_________________________________
James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)

 


NY and PA Injury Lawyer: “Get distracted drivers off the road now!”

In my opinion, it is not the act of talking on...

Distracted drivers are a danger to everyone. Are you one?

An Elmira high school track coach was right on target this week when he targeted distracted drivers, who pose a huge danger to his runners.

I’ll take Southside High School Coach Greg Grund’s plea one step further – texting drivers are a HUGE danger to EVERYONE — runners, cyclists, walkers, kids playing near the streets, other vehicles and so on.

Grund told WETM-TV that some of his runners have had to jump into ditches to avoid getting hit when they are training on area roads.

Most of the time, the coach said, his runners are almost hit because the drivers are using their cell phones to make a call or text.

The law is clear on this – no texting while driving, and only hands-free devices if you are talking on a cell phone while driving in New York state and Pennsylvania.

How many more people have to get injured or killed before our distracted drivers get the message?

Everyone should see this!

Keep an eye out for a very effective public service announcement about the dangers of distracted driving. It was written by a 15-year-old Oswego, N.Y., high school student.

Lauren Daniels made a 30-second spot that won the second annual Drive2Life PSA Competition, sponsored by The National Road Safety Foundation Inc. with National Organizations for Youth Safety. The PSA is airing nationally during National Youth Traffic Safety Month in May.

The spot shows two teens walking and talking. One of the girls is texting, the other is putting on makeup and she walks into a pole, which knocks her down. Her friend says, “Sarah, that’s so funny.”

The scene shifts to a car driving past, and the viewer hears the same dialogue between the girls. We see the driver texting as she’s driving and the screen fades to black as we hear the sounds of a crash and one of the girls keeps repeating her friend’s name, with no response.

To read more about the PSA, click here.

“Distracted driving is an epidemic on America’s roadways, and young people are among the most at risk,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. “When you’re driving, your attention should always be on the road — not on a phone. And I applaud Lauren for creating such an effective video to drive this message home to teens.”

As high school graduation season arrives in the Twin Tiers, let Lauren’s PSA serve as an important reminder.

It is a matter of life and death.

Thanks for reading,

James B. Reed, Elmira Injury Attorney

_________________________________
James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Web: www.zifflaw.com
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

NY Bicycle Lawyer: Horseheads, NY Bicyclist Struck By Drunk Driver!

It has happened again.  Yet another person has been struck by a vehicle here in the Twin Tiers.  This incident could be the worst yet, as preliminary reports indicate the driver of the vehicle was drunk.

The incident occurred on Thursday September 23, 2010 on the Old Ithaca Road in Horseheads, New York near its intersection with Ridge Road.  Reports indicate that Joseph Chaffee of Towanda , PA was operating a box truck at approximately 1:40 PM when he was involved in a collision with 17 year old Joseph Schrom.  The exact circumstances of the collision are unclear at this point, but Chaffee was arrested for Aggravated DWI and Vehicular Assault in the First Degree.  The Aggravated DWI charge means that Chaffee’s blood alcohol was greater that .18% at 1:40 in the afternoon!

Elmira’s Star Gazette reported on this incident; you can find the article here.  It is also reproduced in its entirety below.

The confusion as to exactly how this accident occurred that I reference is based upon the Star Gazette article.  The Star Gazette is reporting that  the bicyclist turned into the side of the truck, but that is inconsistent with Chaffee being charged with Vehicular Assault.  In order to charge someone with the portion of the Vehicular Assault charge at play in this incident, Chaffee had to cause serious physical injury to the bicyclist while operating a vehicle while his blood alcohol was greater than .18%.  If Chaffee was drunk, but didn’t do anything to cause the collision with the bicyclist, he could still be charged with Driving While Intoxicated, but wouldn’t be charged with Vehicular Assault.

So based upon the charges, I can only assume that the Star Gazette confused who did what.

Joseph Schrom, the bicyclist,  is reported to have sustained injuries to his leg and pelvis, and was taken to the Arnot Ogden Medical Center where he was listed in stable condition.  Mr. Chaffee was taken where he belongs: the Chemung County Jail.  He is being held there on $4,000.00 bail.

Luckily for Mr. Schrom, he was wearing his bicycle helmet at the time of the collision.  His helmet undoubtedly protected him from further injuries.

Please stay safe out there, and don’t drink and drive.  The next bicyclist may not be as lucky as Joseph Schrom.

Thanks for reading,

Adam
_______________________________
Adam M. Gee, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Accident Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY  14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: [email protected]
www.zifflaw.com

Visit the NY Biker Law Blog at www.NYBikerLawBlog.com!

FROM THE STAR GAZETTE:

Horseheads A Towanda man was accused of drunken driving and vehicular assault after a Thursday collision injured a Horseheads bicyclist.

State police in Horseheads said Joseph Chaffee, 50, of Rural Route 5, was driving a box truck north on Old Ithaca Road while Joseph Schrom, 17, rode a bicycle north in the shoulder.

Schrom turned the bicycle into the truck near Ridge Road around 1:40 p.m., police said. When police came to the scene, they said, Chaffee had .18 percent or higher blood alcohol content.

Police charged Chaffee with aggravated driving while intoxicated and first-degree vehicular assault. He was arraigned in Horseheads Town Court and remanded to Chemung County Jail in lieu of $4,000 cash bail.

Schrom, who police said was wearing a helmet, sustained leg and pelvis injuries and was taken to Arnot Ogden Medical Center, where he was listed in stable condition Thursday evening.


Elmira Skateboarder Badly Injured by Hit & Run Driver

My heart goes out to a local teenager and his family following a tragic hit & run collision that occurred on Hoffman Street in Elmira in front of EFA High School.  I have three teenagers of my own who attended EFA and I just hope and pray that this poor teenager will be OK.

While my heart bleeds for the victim, I have nothing but contempt for the driver who hit this poor kid and left the scene.  Several years ago, I represented a family whose 14 year old son was run down and left to die on Maple Avenue and I can still feel the anguish of that family who would always wonder if their son might have been saved had the cowardly hit and run driver stopped and rendered aid to their son……

This latest tragedy involves a teenager who was skateboarding and I was asked by our Elmira TV station, WETM-TV, to discuss the laws that might be applicable to this skateboard and car collision.

As many of my readers know, every Wednesday I do a LawTalk segment on WETM-TV news where I discuss current legal issues and laws.  I love doing these shows for two reasons:  first, it is an opportunity for me to help folks better understand the many laws that effect their daily lives; and second, it is an opportunity for me to improve my own legal knowledge as very often I need to do research to better understand the weekly topic we will be discussing.  It is a win/win for everyone.

This week we discussed the laws pertaining to skateboard use in New York State.  As I told our viewers, under NY law, skateboarders, like bicyclists, have a legal right to use the roads. Bicycles, in-line skaters, and skateboarders may all use the roads subject to the rules of the road that pertain to cars and motorcycles– bicyclists and skaters must obey all traffic signals, signs and pavement markings that apply to other drivers with obvious exceptions and special rules.

I also told our viewers that my best legal advice to the hit & run driver is to promptly talking to a criminal defense lawyer (not me as I only represent injury victims like the skateboarder, NOT the people who inflict those injuries!) and then turn themselves in to the police.  It’s the legal thing to do and it’s the moral thing to do.

My best to the skateboarder and his family.  My best to you and your families.

Thanks for reading.

Thanks, Jim
_________________________________
James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer

Here is the WETM-TV Story that prompted our discussion:

Elmira, N.Y. – Elmira Police are saying the teen victim is 18 years of age not 19 as originally reported.  Elmira Police are still searching for the driver involved.  The incident happened around 8pm Tuesday night in front of Elmira Free Academy. Police stated that they are looking for the driver of a golden or tan colored sport style sedan. Officials stated that the vehicle may have damage to the front end.

The 18-year-old victim was taken to Arnot Ogden Medical Center. Police are not releasing his name at this time. One witness tells WETM 18 News that he could not believe what he saw Tuesday night. “I just happened to be looking out the window and I said wow what was that? I thought the car had run over the grate or something but it was so loud. Then I saw something in the street and I thought it was a hat rolling or something and I saw the kid laying there,” stated witness James Banks.

Elmira Police need your help in finding the driver involved. If you have information, you are asked to call them at 271-HALT or the Elmira Police Traffic Bureau at 737-2940.