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#1 Car Accident Lawyer Long Island

#1 Car Accident Lawyer Long Island – Law Firm Located in Port Jefferson Station, NY

Meet The #1 Car Accident Lawyer On Long Island


James R. Winkler is a Partner at Winkler Kurtz, LLP

James R. Winkler is a Partner at Winkler Kurtz, LLP with over 35 years of concentrated experience in the area of matrimonial and family law. Known for his impressive litigation abilities, Jim has successfully settled numerous family matters and domestic relations over his career to secure favorable results for his clients and their loved ones. Jim’s litigation style is assertive and compassionate, emphasizing the importance of settling all family and matrimonial matters in a fair and civilized manner.  An effort is made in every case to fashion an outcome which meets the needs of his clients and their families. In some cases, Jim also serves as a trained mediator who offers mediation services designed for clients who seek to avoid extensive and expensive litigation. As an active member of the legal community, Jim served as the 100th President of the Suffolk County Bar Association and was a former chair of their Matrimonial and Family Law Committee. He has also served as President of the Suffolk County Matrimonial Bar Association and has held every position available on the Executive Board of both associations. Additionally, Jim has chaired a variety of other task forces for the Suffolk County Matrimonial Bar Association such as the task force on the Future of Indigent Legal Services. Jim’s exceptional achievements in the area of matrimonial and family law have earned him several noteworthy recognitions. Jim has been designated as a “Super Lawyer” in the area of matrimonial and family law by Law and Politics every year since 2008, joining only a handful of Long Island car accident attorneys to receive this prestigious designation. He has also been the recipient of the annual President’s Award and Director’s Award and was named “Boss of Year” by the National Association of Legal Secretaries of Suffolk County. Moreover, Jim has been granted the “AV Preeminent” peer review rating by Martindale Hubbell- the highest rate achievable in both legal ability and ethical standards. Jim has been an active member of the local community and served as President of the Port Jefferson Board of Education, President of the Matrimonial Bar Association of Suffolk County, and President of the Greater Port Jefferson/Northern Brookhaven Arts Council. In addition, Jim has participated in numerous continuing legal education programs as a lecturer and has been an active member of various committees at his local church. Jim received his undergraduate education at the University of Virginia and State University of New York at Stony Brook where he graduated cum laude in 1971. He graduated with his Juris Doctorate from Albany Law School of Union University in 1976, beginning his career as an associate to former Assemblyman Peter J. Costigan, Esq., and later becoming a partner under the firm name of Costigan and Winkler.


Richard D. Winkler is a founding partner at Winkler Kurtz, LLP with over 30 years of expertise to offer his clients. Concentrating his entire career in the area of personal injury law, Rich understands that his clients have a choice when they hire an attorney on Long Island NY, and it’s his goal to make everyone who walks into his office a “client for life.” Rich’s successful practice stems from his motivation to advocate for individuals who have been wrongfully injured, developing valuable relationships with his clients along the way. He believes the most important step in a case is the “initial consultation.” Each first meeting is handled personally and Rich makes sure that his clients understand their rights, the legal process, and most importantly, how the client’s losses are measured. Rich’s goal is to give clients 100% of the financial resources to get them back on their feet after an injury. When he receives a call that a life-altering accident has occurred, his team aggressively investigates the case and pursues all available benefits for his clients. In addition to maximizing the damages that an insurance company or corporation pay to his client, Rich and his team also pursue temporary benefits such as no-fault wage loss, medical payments, workers compensation, and disability benefits that help financially support an individual during recovery. Since 2013, Rich has had the distinction of being named a New York Metro “Super Lawyer” in the area of plaintiff’s personal injury law, an honor bestowed upon less than 5% of attorneys in his field. He has received an Award of Merit from the Suffolk County Bar Association for chairing a task force to review recommendations for promoting “client satisfaction” and was also voted “Boss of the Year” by the Suffolk County Legal Secretaries Association. Additionally, Rich is a life member of the “Million Dollar Advocates Forum” and the “Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum,” an honor given only to attorneys who have recovered multi-million dollar awards for their clients. As an accomplished attorney, Rich participates in several professional organizations outside of the firm. He is a member of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association and the American Association of Justice (formerly ATLA), as well as an active member of the Grievance Committee of the Suffolk County Bar Association which investigates attorney misconduct. In 2009, Rich was selected to judge the Suffolk County Finals of the New York State High School Mock Trial Tournament, following years as a coach of the Miller Place High School Mock Trial Team. Rich is admitted to practice law in New York and California. After graduating from the State University of New York (SUNY) Cortland in 1978, Rich relocated to Los Angeles where he received his Juris Doctorate from Southwestern University in 1981. After two years of practicing law on the West Coast, Rich returned to New York where he was admitted to the Bar in 1983.


Say Hello to Mr. Jason Hake!

Jason W. Hake is a Partner at Winkler Kurtz, LLP and is dedicated to representing individuals who have been injured through the wrongful acts of others. Acknowledged as a skilled litigator, Jason aims to resolve every matter in a professional and civil manner while ensuring his clients are fully prepared and educated on every aspect of their case. Jason believes that each client is valuable and deserves responsive, compassionate and diligent representation. As such, Jason prides himself in maintaining communication with his clients and providing them with the legal and factual information required to make meaningful and well-informed decisions regarding their case. Whether his clients have been injured or are related to someone who has tragically lost their life as a result of someone’s negligence, Jason understands that each case carries its own unique challenges and possibilities. Jason’s practice is shaped around his attentiveness to the specific details and law governing his cases as well as his commitment to the needs and goals of each individual client. As an active member in the law community, Jason is a proud member of the New York State Bar Association, Suffolk County Bar Association, and Nassau-Suffolk Trial Lawyers Association. He was admitted to the New York State Bar in 2013, concentrating his practice in the area of personal injury law. Jason has handled numerous cases involving significant injuries, automobile accidents, premises liability, construction site accidents and medical malpractice. Born in Suffolk County, Long Island, Jason received his undergraduate degree in philosophy and psychology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 2007, where he earned a “Socratic Legacy Award” for his scholarship in the area of American Philosophy. Afterwards, Jason earned his Juris Doctor degree from the Maurice A. Dean School of Law at Hofstra University in 2012, additionally earning numerous academic awards and graduation honors for excellence in the study of tort law. While in law school, Jason joined Winkler Kurtz, LLP as a Law Clerk in 2011, becoming partner in 2016 for his exceptional contributions the firm.

Guidelines to Prevent Winter Auto Accidents

Every responsible driver should look out for seasonal hazards before taking their vehicle on the road. Each season comes with its own challenges, but right now we shall discuss the risks of driving in winter. The countries closer to the North or South Pole are subject to harsher winter weather than those near the equator. If your region receives heavy snow, fog, and rainfall during the colder months of the year, you need to exercise extra caution on the streets and highways. Below are a few tips to prevent a car crash or traffic collision during winter: 

Plan the journey in advance

Winter road conditions are likely to slow you down, so you may have to start the journey earlier than normal. You need to figure out the safest route, even if it implies travelling a longer distance. If you are travelling to another state by road, add several hours to the timeline to make up for multiple delays. 

Stay up-to-date with weather conditions along your route

If you are planning a long road trip in winter, the first thing to do is check the weather forecast. The sky and land may seem clear at the moment, but you should make sure that it will remain that way throughout the journey. It is best to postpone the trip if there is exists the possibility for a hail storm. 

Prepare your vehicle

The first step is to clear your vehicle of ice and grimy water. The windshields should be squeaky clean in order to eliminate visibility issues; also replace your wiper blades if they look rusty. Check your battery and top it up, so that it doesn’t freeze or stop working in the middle of the journey. Invest in winter tires that provide greater traction on wet and icy roads. You may add antifreeze to keep your vehicle warm and running through the harsh weather. 

Enhance Visibility

Install high beam head and back lights to increase the visibility of your vehicle. Dark and murky winters can make it hard for other travelers to spot you from a distance during day and night. Dense fog may further hinder sight of incoming traffic. 

Drive slow and steady

Many auto accidents during winter occur due to speeding. It is recommended to drive slightly below the speed limit in harsh cold weather. Dense fog or hail may conceal traffic and obstacles ahead. In addition, frozen or wet roads reduce traction, which may result in skidding. Driving slowly will help maintain balance and prevent forceful collisions. Do not make sharp turns or swerves; always signal before you change course. 

Maintain greater distance

Slippery roads can delay halting after hitting the brakes. The rule of thumb is to maintain a distance of one car during normal conditions, so make that 2 cars during wet season. Tailgating on slippery roads may result in severe rear end crashes. 

Stay Alert and Focused

Regardless of the season, you must be fully awake and sober when you take the wheel. Look out for black ice and potholes on the road. Do not allow yourself to be distracted, and remain aware of your surroundings. If you notice any reckless driver on the road, try to report them to the traffic police. If you get involved in a car accident with a careless winter driver, the #1 Car Accident Lawyer on Long Island at Winkler Kurtz can help you file your claim and seek compensation.

How Do I Settle A Car Accident Claim?

Have you recently been in a car accident? Are you looking to file a claim in court but unsure how to go about settling? At Winkler Kurtz, LLP, we can help clients who are faced with this exact situation. Our #1 Car Accident Lawyers on Long Island are specialists in this field and will provide the representation you need to come to a favorable settlement. Many moving parts go into this, but fortunately, our team will have you covered.   

Gather Important Information

Even if the other driver is the one that causes the car accident, in most cases, you will not be interacting with them directly when its time to move forward to the courtroom. Because of this, our #1 Car Accident Lawyer on Long Island highly recommends gathering a few pieces of information immediately after the car accident to make the legal proceedings a bit easier. The information includes:

Take Pictures

Another way to improve your chances of coming to a favorable settlement claim is to take pictures of the accident. The more evidence you provide our #1 Car Accident Lawyer on Long Island, the better. For the most beneficial effect, our team recommends taking pictures of the below:

Proving Fault

Once the above has been accomplished, our #1 Car Accident Lawyer on Long Island will work towards showing who was at fault. Doing so is the most crucial part of the settlement, as the person at fault will likely be required to pay damages to the other party. When you believe the car accident took place due to no fault of your own, we’ll be there to help. We’ll craft a case that shows the defendant was at fault and that you should be entitled to damages.

What Damages Are You Entitled To? 

The monetary amount of each settlement in a car accident claim varies due to several factors. The extent of damage to the vehicles, the severity of any injuries, and the amount of fault for each party contribute to this. However, our team will do everything in its power to help you achieve the most favorable settlement. In each car accident case, below are examples of what may be covered with damages:

Schedule Your Consultation With The #1 Car Accident Lawyer On Long Island

The best way to settle your car accident claim is to have outstanding legal representation on your side. At Winkler Kurtz, LLP, our car accident lawyer is well versed in this area and will help get you the settlement package you were hoping for. Contact our team today to schedule the consultation you need to get the process started.

What is the Leading Cause of Motor Vehicle Accidents?

Most motor vehicle accidents occur because of driver inattention or failure to obey traffic rules. However, there are other factors that cause such incidents as well: weather conditions (freezing rain, snow), slippery road surfaces, defective tires and brakes, incorrect tire pressure levels etc. If you need a Long Island Car Accident Lawyer, Winkler Kurtz can help. Below is a list of the seven leading causes for motor vehicle accidents: #1 Failure to Obey Traffic Rules: According to statistics, failure to follow traffic rules is one of the leading causes for motor vehicle accidents in most countries. This can happen when you get on a major road and proceed without obeying traffic lights or signs (running red lights), following too closely behind other vehicles etc. You must always obey traffic rules, as they are made to prevent such accidents. #2 Fatigue: In many cases, motor vehicle drivers may be driving for long hours without a break. This can cause fatigue that results in serious hazards on the road. To prevent such an incident from happening try to get plenty of rest before heading out. If you are tired, ask someone else to drive. #3 Alcohol: Refusing to accept a breathalyzer test is one of the leading causes for traffic violations. Another common factor that may cause an accident because of alcohol is when you are drinking with friends and decide to get in your vehicle after drinking a lot at a party or in a bar. If you wish to avoid such an accident, do not drink and drive. #4 Speeding: Another factor that can cause a motor vehicle accident is speeding. Always try to obey speed limits, as they are in place for your own safety. Going too fast will make it harder for you to break in case of emergency or if something unexpected happens on the road. #5 Defective Auto Parts: Defective auto parts are one of the most common causes of traffic accidents in different countries, as drivers often do not suspect them to be a cause of such incidents. Make sure you always maintain your vehicle and make any required repairs in time. If something seems amiss or defective on your vehicle, contact a mechanic to fix it before you get back on the road. #6 Drunk Driving: Just like alcohol can cause motor vehicle accidents when abused by drivers, driving under the influence of drugs can also lead to an accident. If you have been consuming medication or certain substances, do not get behind the wheel. #7 Weather Conditions: In most cases, weather conditions and the road itself can be major causes of accidents. This happens when drivers are blinded by ice or snow on the surface, slippery rocks etc. Make sure you leave plenty of distance between other vehicles to avoid colliding with each other. Also check if your tires have enough traction before embarking on a long journey.

Contact Winkler Kurtz For The #1 Car Accident Lawyer On Long Island

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation. At Winkler Kurtz, LLP we have the #1 Car Accident Lawyer on Long Island that can offer you assistance. Schedule your free consultation by clicking here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: When Should I Contact A Suffolk County Car Accident Lawyer?

Answer: After a car accident, the authorities will write a report on what happened after questioning everyone involved. If the report portrays you in a bad light or puts you at fault, and you disagree with the report and how it portrays you, contacting your car accident lawyer might be a priority. Your car accident lawyer can clear up any miscommunications or mistakes in the police report and clear your name. Additionally, if you end up having to go to your doctor for any damage from the accident, it may be your best choice to contact your car accident attorney. This is especially true if you believe the accident was due to the other party’s negligence. If you suffer any damage from an accident that was caused by another person’s negligence, you may be able to get compensated for your damages, injuries, and loss of income. 

Another significant factor on whether you need an attorney more immediately would be if anyone was seriously injured. If you were seriously injured in an accident, you deserve to be represented the best way possible, to your insurance, to your doctors, and to the law if they are involved. To make sure you are best represented by Long Island car accident lawyers, contact us at Winkler Kurtz, LLP. If the other party was seriously injured it is still best to contact your car accident attorney. Even if the accident was partially your fault, without someone who understands car accident law and how to navigate an accident case you may be at undue risk. Having a car accident lawyer supporting you can protect you from extra liability or blame that may be placed on you.

Question: What Is The Importance Of Working With A Suffolk County Car Accident Lawyer?

Answer: If you or someone you know has suffered an injury or property damage by another person or was involved in a car accident due to another party’s negligence, reaching out to a Long Island Car Accident Lawyer might be the best option for you. Whether it is to help you navigate your claim, manage both yours and the other party’s insurance company, or handle other parties involved such as the police, having an attorney on your side can be a great help.

Question: What Are Some Important Facts To Know About Suffolk County Car Accident Cases?

Answer: The thought of being involved in a car accident can be concerning and anxiety-inducing to many people. Being involved in a car accident can be a dreadful, troublesome, and frightening situation, no matter if it is a small accident or a more serious one. However, having a Long Island Car Accident Lawyer you can reach out to if you ever find yourself in an accident can bring you peace of mind and help you in those tense situations. In addition to having a lawyer to rely on, knowing some facts about accident cases can also help you as well. Knowing things such as how cellphones can increase the rate of accidents, or how driving while drunk has reduced across America can be helpful to know.

Question: Does Winkler Kurtz, LLP Specialize in Suffolk County Car Accident Cases?

Answer: Winkler Kurtz LLP has been one of Long Island’s most trusted law firms for over 30 years. We have kept this excellence for this long by not focusing just on winning cases but creating a trusting relationship with our clients for many years. We also offer our clients legal advice and help across many areas. Some of the key areas we work in include Real Estate Law, Trusts & Estates, Divorce and Family Law, and Personal Injury cases. One of the most prominent personal injury cases include cases that involve car accidents. Because of this, we at Winkler Kurtz have a team of highly experienced Long Island Car Accident Lawyers that will help you in your time of need.

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