If you are considering taking legal action for injuries that you sustained in a car accident, you probably have a ton of questions about the legal process and your potential lawsuit. One of the things that you might be wondering is whether or not your car accident settlement will be public record. Rightfully so, many people feel uncomfortable with their legal business being available to the general public.
We have good news. The answer to that question, generally speaking, is no. The following facts may be helpful when thinking about public records and car accidents.
- Public records are available to anyone and everyone. Public records are documents that are not confidential and are available to the public through the Freedom of Information Act of 1996. These documents are archived by the government in databases and provide information to anyone searching.
- Car accident settlements are not public records. In the vast majority of cases, car accident settlements are confidential agreements that cannot be accessed by the public. The terms of confidentiality are agreed upon by both parties during the settlement, but in extreme circumstances a car accident may become public record.
- In rare cases, a judge may make a car accident settlement public record. The main instance where a judge can open a confidential settlement is when there is a possible threat to public safety. In this circumstance, a judge may rule to unseal or open a confidential car accident settlement.
Staying informed on things like this is a great idea when you’re involved in legal proceedings. In the unfortunate event that you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident, call our office at 212-421-0300. Our attorneys and paralegals have over a combined century of experience dealing with car accident cases in and around New York City and have achieved over $100 million in settlements and verdicts to prove our success record. We spend countless hours doing everything from checking red light camera footage to speaking with expert witnesses and everything in between so we can make sure justice is served. Call our office today to figure out your next steps in your car accident. We are here to help you.