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Buffalo New York Insurance Defense Blog

How will electronic logging devices impact litigation?

Commercial motor insurers and carriers should be aware that in 2017, Congress solidified the law that requires commercial vehicles to be equipped with electronic logging devices. These devices monitor driver logs, including driving hours as well as other features such as front and rear cameras.

Autopilot mode making waves in the auto insurance industry

Telsa's autopilot feature has resulted in the death of a Florida man. One of the first deaths of its kind, the semi-automatic driving feature may make the auto insurance industry scrutinize the new technology in cars.

The Complexities Of Rideshare Insurance Coverage In New York

Navigating new rideshare laws and their impact on insurance coverage disputes has become increasingly more complicated. With the passage of legislation last year, rideshare companies such as Lyft, Uber and Ride are mandated to provide vehicle liability insurance of $1.25 million per occurrence once a passenger is being driven. The law describes a rideshare driver as a TNC ("Transportation Network Company") driver and the passenger as a TNC passenger. But what happens if the accident occurs while a TNC driver is driving to pick-up the TNC passenger? What coverage then applies: the personal liability insurance or the mandated insurance?

Self-driving cars raise new issues for drivers and insurers

When automakers starting testing self-driving vehicles, New York was the only state with a law that potentially restricted the technology. According to Consumer Reports, there is a state restriction which stipulates NY drivers must have one hand on the wheel while the vehicle is moving.

Though this doesn't explicitly restrict autonomous vehicles, it certainly implied driverless cars were not legal in the state. However, New York passed a bill that temporarily permitted self-driving cars to be tested. The law initially allowed this testing for one year, but deadline was extended for another year, just before the expiration on April 1 of this year.

Is the scaffold law still needed?

The state of New York is a great place to live because it's one of the centers of world commerce has been so for a long time now. Because of that, there are laws designed over a hundred years ago still on the books. Many of them no longer make sense.

The prime example is the scaffold law. By law, every single construction project in the state places "absolute liability" on the property owner and builder in the event of a construction worker's fall. This one simple law, enacted in 1885, is what many builders and insurers blame for the slowdown of construction and growth in the Empire state. 

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Hagelin Spencer LLC has offices conveniently located in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, and Garden City. While our firm is large enough to have the resources necessary to satisfy even the largest corporate client, our attorneys do not lose sight of the importance of building a strong relationship with everyone we represent.

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