Areas of Practice
Personal Injury & Accident Cases
Please call the Altman Law Office for a free phone consultation about any accident. These cases can result in huge monetary recoveries. There is also no attorney until a recovery is made.
Personal Injury Law in General
Everyone must use reasonable care to not hurt others or their property in their day-to-day activities. Anyone aggrieved can sue the wrongdoer and recover a money judgment enforceable against income, assets, and property.
Finding a viable personal injury claim is sometimes an art. There are not-so-obvious and creative ways to make out a case that an experienced and tenacious lawyer can find.
Premises accidents, automobile cases, intentional wrongs, products liability, wrongful death, medical malpractice, construction, and worksite injuries, and animal bites, among other claims, all involve personal injury law.
Please call for free phone consultation if you suspect you’ve been the victim of any wrongdoing. There is no attorney fee until a recovery is made.
There is an endless list of premises accidents, including falls, auto accidents, lack of security, inadequate supervision, faulty playground equipment, poisoning by lead, carbon monoxide, asbestos or toxic mold, explosions, fires, etc. These are not handled the same and experience counts.
Falls are very common and can result from tripping, slipping, losing one’s footing, misjudging a step, missing safety measures like a handrail, etc. They happen everywhere and hazards may be seen or unseen, like inadequate or misdirected lighting, highly polished floors, water on the floor, uneven steps and so on.
Take advantage of Mr. Altman expertise with a free phone consultation.
Motor vehicle accident cases take years to master. There are many rules about operating vehicles and insurance is complicated.
No Fault is often misunderstood but central to these cases. Persons injured in or by automobiles get medical and other benefits paid even if they caused the accident, hence the name “No Fault”. But they cannot sue for pain and suffering unless their injuries are serious.
A “serious injury” means death, dismemberment, significant disfigurement, a fracture, a miscarriage, permanent loss of use of a body organ, member, function or system, and a few other categories.
Auto cases get interesting when there are only “soft tissue” injuries, meaning no broken bones. The most common soft tissue injury is to the fatty pads located between most of the spinal vertebrate. Other common soft tissue injuries include damaged or “torn” cartilage or ligaments in the shoulders and knees.
The Altman Law Office is extensively experienced in motor vehicle accident cases. Call for a free phone consultation.
Someone with extraordinary expertise must generally use the same degree (“standard”) of care displayed by others of similar expertise. A deviation from a prevailing extraordinary standard of care is “malpractice”.
Malpractice claims involve persons engaged in a “profession” that often requires a graduate degree, the passage of one or more professional exams and a license, like medicine, dentistry, psychiatry, psychology, law, architecture, and engineering.
Mr. Altman is thoroughly versed in the principles of malpractice and can give your claim a free initial review. Please call the Altman Law Office for a free phone consultation.
There is no automatic right to sue for the wrongful death of a loved one. If the deceased person endured pain and suffering before death, then the estate inherits the right to sue for that, but not for the death.
New York’s Estates, Powers and Trusts Law creates a wrongful death claim for the “pecuniary” losses suffered by the heirs.
Pecuniary loss is the value of the support that would have been provided by the deceased. Wrongful death claims can have large values and include claims for pain and suffering experienced prior to death.
Please call the Altman Law Office right away if you think that your loved one may have died under suspicious circumstances for a free phone consultation. There is no attorney fee for a wrongful death claim until a recovery is made.
Criminal Law, especially DWI/DUI
Criminal Law Generally
Someone suspected of a criminal wrongdoing must act quickly. The earliest possible entry of an attorney is one of the best things one can do. A suspect has rights. Upfront are the rights to remain silent, be represented by an attorney and to have an attorney present during questioning.
The most important thing to the prosecutor is often a conviction … but not necessarily to the charges brought. A defense attorney’s mission is to win a dismissal or acquittal or to get the unique facts of a case incorporated into a plea bargain offer that is advantageous to the accused.
The main thing is to get that lawyer, and fast! Mr. Altman is experienced in criminal matters and will aggressively fight for the accused. Please call for a free phone consultation and don’t make these common mistakes:
Driving While Intoxicated or Impaired ranges from petty, “traffic” violations to felonies and jail time.
A typical case starts by getting pulled over for nothing to do with impaired driving, like a broken tail light. The officer may then think he or she smells the odor of alcohol or notices glassy, bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, or lack of motor coordination. An officer is then allowed to administer DWI tests. The “stop” is one area that needs careful review by an experienced attorney. Because if the stop is no good, then the whole case might get dismissed.
By the way, must a motorist submit to the DWI tests? The short answer is “No.” But there are consequences depending on which category of tests you refuse: Field Sobriety Tests or Chemical Tests.
Field Sobriety Tests are not required and the position of the Altman Law Office is that you should always politely decline by saying, “I’ve heard that they are not reliable. So, I would just rather not. Thank you.”
So, let’s be clear about what Field Sobriety Tests are. There are only three Standardized Field Sobriety Tests. They are recognized as indicative of possible impairment when performed precisely according to guidelines. That’s all. They are the One Leg Stand, the Walk and Turn, and the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (a “stimulus” like a pen or finger is moved across your field of vision and you are asked to follow it with your eyes).
There are other Field Sobriety Tests that may be recognized as indicating something by someone and can be administered however anybody wants. They include the Romberg Balance (Close your eyes and don’t fall over), Finger to Nose, Finger Counting, Recite the Alphabet (Backwards!), and the “Other” test where the officer fills in his own. Courts usually do not give any validity to these non-standardized tests.
Chemical Tests require a sample of your breath, urine or blood. Refusing a sample can have significant consequences. A judge can also sign a warrant letting the police take your blood. Chemical Test Refusals is one of the more mysterious and complicated areas in the practice of law. It can result in a one-year revocation of your License, a DMV surcharge and more. A thorough review is unfortunately beyond the scope of this website.
So, let’s jump to what everyone asks.
Must you give a second breath sample at the precinct if you already gave one when pulled over?
The answer remains, “No.” But there is no limit to how many times or how many different samples the police can ask of you. If you say “no” to any, it is sometimes like saying “no” to all.
Should I refuse to take a Breath Test?
The answer is not as simple as “yes” or “no,” and lawyers disagree about this. You need to know an awful lot to make an intelligent decision when you are looking down the barrel of a possible DWI charge.
This is the general approach of the Altman Law Office:
- Take the test if you’ve had nothing to drink for at least twenty-four hours. A breath test is reasonably reliable at failing to detect alcohol when there is none. But beware that many are arrested for DWI the “morning after”. A false positive can also result from diabetes, GERD or if you belch or regurgitate in about the last twenty minutes before giving a sample.
- Do not take the test if there was an accident and someone got hurt. You could be facing serious jail time and need every advantage.
Also, do not drive yourself to your first DWI court date because your License may be suspended.
The consequences of a conviction vary, including fines, surcharges, a conditional discharge (release with conditions), license suspensions and revocations, classes, probation, and jail. There are also non-criminal consequences, such as DMV surcharges, increased auto insurance and the dreaded “three revocations in twenty years”, a simple but frightful rule: Driving privileges can be revoked for life upon a third revocation (not conviction) of your License. (Yes. No driving for life with no conviction!)
Mr. Altman would be happy to speak to you if you are unfortunate enough to be facing one of these charges. Please call for a free phone consultation.
Real Estate Generally
Real Estate Closings
You need a broadly experienced lawyer when buying or selling a home or commercial property. These are often the largest transactions people ever do. Plus, New York is a “caveat emptor” state, which means “buyer beware.”
For one thing, many lawyers doing closings have never litigated or no longer do. Not Mr. Altman.
He understands worst-case scenarios and how things might play out in a court. He handles those cases. This provides unique insights at every stage of a deal.
So please call Mr. Altman for a free phone consultation!
Real Estate Litigation
This is any dispute over real estate that ends up in court, such as Landlord and Tenant, trespass, Adverse Possession, Condominium, and Cooperative disputes, Quiet Title and Bar Claims, Code Violations, foreclosures, Tax Assessment review, zoning appeals and much more.
Mr. Altman is experienced in many of these areas and is just a free phone consultation away.
Landlord and Tenant
This concerns ownership, operation, leasing, administrative and court proceedings for the operation and occupancy of real estate, as a landlord, tenant, or both.
Most people think of “evictions” first. Evictions are technically “summary proceedings”. Both of those words emphasize how fast they proceed.
On June 14, 2019, the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 tipped the scales in tenants’ favor.
It was conceivable before then that a tenant could be evicted in just eleven days. Now the conceivable minimum time to evict a tenant is over three times longer, at thirty-six days. And the landlord can now recover only “base rent” due and not “added rent” like late charges and attorney fees.
It is not advisable to try and evict someone without a lawyer. Many of the rules are complicated, strictly enforced and totally unforgiving.
A landlord must follow the exact proper steps, in the proper order, at the proper times and in the proper ways or risk a total dismissal, wasting months and having accomplished nothing, except losing more rent. Professional and savvy Mom and Pop landlords almost always use lawyers.
Mr. Altman is thoroughly experienced in many areas of Landlord and Tenant Law. He is willing to represent both landlords and tenants in all kinds of summary proceedings.
One piece of advice for landlords: It is almost never prudent to delay starting a summary proceeding if rent is owed.
A money judgment is often worthless or not worth the effort or cost to collect. All that matters is getting the property back ASAP to minimize threefold losses: 1) No rent until a new tenant is installed; 2) Costs of the summary proceeding; and 3) Some tenants will vandalize the premises or take expensive fixtures with them.
Please call right away for a free phone consultation with Mr. Altman on any Landlord and Tenant issue.