Accident with a Drunk Driver
When a drunk driver causes a crash and serious injuries, the victim may have options for pursuing justice, including recovering compensation through a fault-based insurance claim or lawsuit. If you were in an accident with a drunk driver, our lawyers in Long Island City may be able to help. We fight for fair compensation based on the circumstances, case facts, and applicable laws.
A New York car accident lawyer from Shulman & Hill may be able to go to work on your case today. Our team serving Long Island City will discuss your crash and legal options with you today for free. Contact our team at 516.613.3196 to learn more.
Shulman & Hill Attorneys Fights for Victims of Drunk Driving Crash Injuries
Shulman & Hill also serves clients in all five boroughs: Brooklyn, Manhattan, Staten Island, Queens, and the Bronx. We are New York’s premier personal injury law firm, striving to protect the rights of crash victims and representing their best interests.
We handle difficult and complex cases that may make other firms back down.
Every case is personal to us because we care about our clients and want to help them recover physically, emotionally, and financially. Our case results show that we pursue fair compensation based on each client’s losses and have won more than $250 million for them.
Our attorneys work based on contingency. This payment arrangement is common for many personal injury firms. We do not charge upfront fees and instead pay for these expenses and recover attorney’s fees after we secure a payout for you. We only charge you these fees if we win your case.
Drunk Driving Is a Significant Issue in Long Island City
With art galleries, microbreweries, bars, and pubs all growing in number and popularity in Long Island City, there is fear drunk driving numbers could grow. Fatal drunk driving crashes have spiked across all five boroughs in recent years.
According to the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), there were 43 deaths linked to driving while intoxicated (DWI) in NYC during 2021. The three-year average for 2018, 2019, and 2020 was 27 fatalities annually. These data mark a 60 percent increase for 2021.
Signs of Alcohol Impairment
While not all DWI collisions cause fatalities, many may lead to significant injuries to victims. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an elevated blood alcohol content (BAC) affects a driver’s abilities in numerous ways, such as:
- Poor judgment
- Impaired decision making
- Inhibited vision, often blurry or double vision
- Significantly slowed reaction time
- Reduced coordination
According to the NYC DOT, the city may support legislation to lower the legal BAC limit from .08 to .05 percent. This reduction could mean more drivers would face DWI charges. While this change affects criminal law, it could also keep tipsy drivers off the streets, decreasing the number of crashes. It would, in turn, affect the civil cases our firm handles.
Damages Our Car Accident Lawyers Seek and Recover for Clients
Some victims with serious injuries can recover additional compensation beyond their no-fault insurance. These awards include economic losses that your no-fault policy doesn’t cover and non-economic damages. Our team may be able to help you with a liability claim or personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
A liability case must show:
- You suffered serious injuries.
- The accused party caused the accident.
- You suffered injuries in the crash.
By building a strong case and taking legal action, it may be possible to recover:
- Past and future pain and suffering
- Past and future medical care costs
- Past and future lost income from missing work or your inability to return to work
You May Qualify for Wrongful Death Damages
Our attorneys also represent clients in wrongful death cases. When a drunk driver causes a fatal accident, the victim’s family can try to hold the at-fault party accountable and recover damages. Our team understands how frustrating and upsetting this time is for survivors and approaches each case with compassion.
The recoverable damages in a wrongful death car accident case may differ somewhat from those in an injury case. Our attorneys pursue the losses your family suffered because of your loved one’s crash and passing. It includes compensation for any conscious pain and suffering your loved one endured between their accident and death.
Our Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Navigate the Process for Clients
Under New York law, some accident victims have several options for compensation following a crash. Sometimes, the best option is a claim based on your no-fault personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. Our team can assess if this is a good option based on your case facts.
It only pays for the basic damages you suffered. Alternatively, many accident victims may qualify to pursue additional damages through a fault-based case against the drunk driver.
Our attorneys often help seriously injured crash victims:
Prove They Suffered Serious Injuries
New York law requires us to show that our client suffered serious injuries to recover compensation that includes future expenses and intangible losses. However, the state does not determine who suffered a serious injury. Instead, we may need to take the case to court and let the jury decide.
To this end, we may gather evidence about our client’s injuries, prognosis, and care needs. We can present this evidence to the insurance company or at trial, showing the severity of their injuries and why they deserve future medical expenses, income losses, and other damages.
Show the Drunk Driver Caused the Accident
Unlike your PIP claim, a liability claim or lawsuit requires us to show fault. We need to document what happened and who caused it using official reports, witness statements, expert testimony, documentation, and other evidence. It supports our claim for compensation or a civil lawsuit against the drunk driver.
The civil case we handle and the criminal DWI case against the driver are separate. There is no need for a criminal conviction to recover compensation. We sometimes use much of the same evidence, and a conviction can support our settlement negotiations. However, we do not need a criminal conviction to hold the drunk driver legally responsible in civil court.
Seek Compensation From the At-Fault Driver
The car accident attorneys from our team may represent victims of drunk driving crashes in their civil cases. There are two ways we may recover compensation for these clients:
- Negotiate a fair settlement with the driver’s insurance company
- Win in a civil trial and have the jury award compensation
In many cases, we may pursue both of these options at the same time. We file the insurance claim and lawsuit concurrently, building the legal case while we continue negotiating with the insurance company for a fair settlement. Sometimes, we reach a settlement, and the case ends. Occasionally, we need to go to trial, present our evidence, and ask the jury to give a verdict on our client’s behalf.
Our drunk driving accident attorneys handle all aspects of the process. Our clients can focus on their physical healing and recovery while we take care of the rest. There are no guarantees, but our experience and knowledge mean we know how to develop a strong case to seek a fair payout for our clients hurt by drunk drivers in Long Island City.
There Are Deadlines for Suing a Drink Driver After a Long Island City Crash
Crash victims should consider their options for compensation as soon as their injuries allow. You could begin receiving medical bills and racking up other losses and expenses within a few days of an accident. This is one reason why we encourage people to call our team quickly after a crash.
It may sometimes allow us to gather and analyze more evidence, too. Some evidence does not last for months or years unless we ensure it is preserved. For example, imagine a microbrewery’s security cameras caught the accident on video. They likely record over previous videos every week or two. If we do not speak to them before then, we will not have access to the video later.
When we file a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of a client, we generally have up to three years following the crash under CPLR § 214. If we file a wrongful death lawsuit, EPTL § 5-4.1 dictates that the state usually enforces a two-year deadline. Exceptions exist, though. Our team may assess the timeline for your case during your free consultation.
Discuss Your Options With Our Team Member Serving Long Island City Today
Shulman & Hill offers free case consultations so victims of careless or reckless drivers can learn more about their options. Sometimes, our attorneys may recover compensation for victims beyond what they believed possible. We seek justice and accountability in drunk driving cases in Long Island City and across New York.
Reach out to our firm at 516.613.3196 today to get started. Our team only gets paid if you do.
WE WORK WITH YOU
TO GET YOU COMPENSATED
Everyday working people often struggle to afford top-tier legal representation. To ensure equal access to justice, we work on a contingency-fee basis. You pay no attorneys’ fees unless we achieve a settlement or verdict in your case.
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