Nearly 800 people arrested, more than 48,000 tickets issued, nearly 643 injury crash investigations. These are more than statistics. This is a sign that hundreds of other people decided to travel on local roadways while drunk or otherwise impaired and injured hundreds of innocent people. Not only did these drunk drivers put their own lives at risk, but they also put hundreds of others at risk of injury or death.
Victims of a drunk driver need answers. Instead of wondering what steps you should take next, contact a Bronx drunk driving accident lawyer at the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman today.
Our Experienced Attorneys Get Results for Clients
While there is never a guarantee of an outcome when you file a drunk driving accident lawsuit, having an attorney with experience in car accident cases can improve your odds.
Our firm gets results:
- $425,000 – Lower back injury after a car accident
- $380,000 – Herniated disc after being rear-ended
- $1.58 million – Auto accident resulting in two herniated discs
If you have a case and choose to work with us, we will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve. This is the same whether we settle with the insurance company of the responsible party or if we have to take your case to court.
Bronx Drunk Drivers Can Cause Serious Injuries
Anytime you are involved in a car accident, you stand the risk of a serious injury. However, drunk drivers are more likely to ignore traffic signals, make risky moves on the roadway, or drive too closely because their judgment is impaired.
Some potential injuries include:
- Spinal cord injuries – Victims who suffer spinal cord injury after a Bronx drunk driving accident can suffer from impaired mobility which can last a lifetime. In more serious cases they could also face paralysis.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) – Concussions are always dangerous for victims and can have a devastating impact on focus, memory, and ability to control emotions. A TBI can also mean you will be forced to live with chronic headaches or may need round-the-clock care for the rest of your life. Brain injuries often require long recovery times.
- Broken bones – Once you have suffered a broken bone, you could wind up with additional health challenges. Victims who have suffered a broken bone may have mobility loss, pain, and in later years, may also suffer arthritis at the point of the break.
- Cuts and lacerations – While we tend to think of cuts and lacerations as a minor injury, victims often wind up with disfiguring scars. Blood loss and the potential for infection are also possible following a drunk driving accident.
These are only some injuries a victim of a drunk driver may suffer. Families can lose a loved one in a Bronx drunk driving accident. Regardless of whether you are a victim or a family member who has lost a loved one in a drunk driving accident, you can count on the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman to seek justice on your behalf.
Fault and Bronx Drunk Driving Accidents
Establishing fault, or liability, is at the heart of all Bronx drunk driving accident claims. Initially, a drunk driving accident victim may file a claim with the drunk driver’s insurance company. Since New York requires insurance when a vehicle is registered, there is some coverage available.
The minimum auto insurance coverage in New York is:
- Property damage for a single accident – $10,000
- Bodily injury for a person involved in an accident – $25,000
- Death of a person involved in an accident – $50,000
Therefore, if your damages exceed these amounts, you need to know who may be at fault for the accident to help ensure you can be reimbursed for your injuries and the associated costs.
Some at-fault parties following a drunk driving accident include:
- The driver – Clearly, someone who is driving impaired decided to get behind the wheel of their car and put others in danger. In some cases, these drivers are going to face DUI charges in addition to being sued for the additional damages to victims.
- The host of the driver – If the driver was at a nightclub, bar, or restaurant and drinking, their server, bartender, or the owner could be partially responsible for your injuries. Bartenders are warned during their training that it is against the law to serve someone who was clearly intoxicated.
- Government entity – Even a sober driver can have trouble navigating roadway issues such as potholes, and other barriers. If there was a problem with the roadway, the responsible entity may bear liability.
The Bronx personal injury attorneys at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman thoroughly investigate our clients’ accidents, and make sure we seek the maximum compensation they are entitled to.
Financial Recovery Following a Bronx Drunk Driving Accident
No two drunk driving accidents are identical. Victims’ injuries are seldom the same because there are so many variables. A victim’s age, their prior health, the speed the vehicles were traveling during impact, and weather conditions all play a role in the severity of the accident and, therefore, the severity of the injuries.
In all Bronx drunk driving accident cases, a victim may seek both economic and non-economic losses. These categories sound confusing but here is what they mean: An economic loss is one that affects your finances, while a non-economic loss is what makes a victim’s life worth living.
Economic loss recovery will typically include:
- Current and future estimated medical expenses – From the minute you seek medical care after a Bronx drunk driving accident until you have no further medical issues from the injury you received, you have the right to seek compensation for your medical costs. These costs include the care you receive from doctors, hospital visits, medical equipment such as wheelchairs and crutches, prescription drugs for pain or infection, and travel to and from your doctor’s visits.
- Current and future lost wages – This is a misunderstood category of compensation which you may claim as part of a lawsuit. Many victims fail to understand they may seek more than their actual pay loss. When a victim cannot work they also lose other benefits including paid time off, accumulations of sick days, and pension benefits. Victims may also be required to take additional time off once they have returned to work for rehabilitation, chiropractor visits, or follow up care. Your attorney will work with you to make sure they are seeking the right amount of wages you could lose as a result of your injuries.
- Home restructuring costs – Victims who suffer debilitating injuries that require long-term recovery may need to have a ramp added in their home or may need to make access to bathrooms or other rooms in the home easier as a result of the injury. These changes in the structure of your home will not be without a steep cost and you should not have to pay for them by yourself.
- In-home care costs or assistance – When you suffer an injury that results in restriction of your movements, you may not carry out normal household tasks which you were doing before the accident. In these cases, you may need to hire someone to perform tasks like landscaping which you should not have to pay for on your own. Victims who can’t physically care for themselves may need in-home assistance while their family members work and attend school. These costs may also be included in a Bronx drunk driving accident lawsuit.
- Personal property damage – Your lawyer may seek vehicle compensation for damage, damage to other property in your car, and replacement clothing in a lawsuit.
- Other unexpected costs – When you lose a family member in a drunk driving accident, you will have other costs that the responsible party should pay for including funeral and burial costs.
Non-economic losses are more complicated to assess a value to because every person has different interests, family situations, and goals. Victims of drunk driving accidents may claim damages for loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment, as well as disfigurement. You should speak with the legal team at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman to determine what types of non-economic damages should be included in your lawsuit.
Insurance Companies Want to Escape Liability for Bronx Drunk Driving Accidents
Regardless of whether their client was at fault or not, some insurance companies might take measures to avoid paying out a claim. When you file an initial claim following a drunk driving accident, chances are you will experience a delay while the insurer investigates your claim. This is a time to be wary. Avoid signing any type of release form without having an attorney review it first.
One of the tactics an insurance company may use to deny or reduce your claim is blaming a preexisting condition. Rather than having you sign a medical release for the medical records involving your accident, they may include language which allows them to review your entire medical history. For a victim who suffered a back or neck injury in the past, the insurer may claim their client could not be responsible for your injury because you had a similar prior injury.
Victims who did not feel like their injuries were serious immediately following a crash may have avoided seeking medical care. However, within a day or two they started feeling back or neck pain, joint pain, or other pain and then sought medical care. The insurance company may claim the victim could not have been injured by the drunk driver because they failed to seek medical care following the accident. This is one of the reasons why it is important to seek medical attention, regardless of how you feel immediately following an accident.
Speak with your attorney because there are steps responsible parties may take to discredit you and work towards pointing the blame on you, the victim, or otherwise attempting to reduce the amount of compensation you could be entitled to for your injuries.
You Deserve Justice and Money Should Not Get in the Way
Finances can feel overwhelming when you are out of work recovering from a drunk driving accident. You are under pressure trying to maintain your household expenses while facing an uncertain financial picture. Here is the good news: When you have questions about your injuries or the loss of a loved one following a drunk driving accident, you can contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman for a free consultation. We will answer your questions and help ensure you understand what rights you have under New York’s drunk driving accident laws.
Keep in mind, you have a time limit on when you can file a lawsuit, and you should make sure you do not talk to an insurance adjuster without speaking with an experienced attorney first. Should you decide to move forward and file a Bronx drunk driving accident lawsuit, you should not have to worry about paying legal fees upfront while you are worrying about your overall financial health.
We work on a contingency fee basis. If we settle, we take our fee out of the final amount. Hopefully, this allows you to get the justice you deserve while you focus on your physical recovery. Let us take away the burden of negotiating a settlement on your behalf.
Bronx Drunk Driving Accident FAQ
If you are one of the more than 1.4 million residents of the Bronx, you or someone you know may have been involved in a car accident involving a drunk driver. Following any type of car accident, victims, their families, and their friends have questions. Here are some common questions we are asked at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman.
What steps should I take following a Bronx drunk driving accident?
Once the police have been notified of the accident, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself later. Assuming no one at the scene has life-threatening injuries, you should take photographs of the scene of the accident. In addition to capturing the damage to the vehicles involved, you also want to gather other information such as traffic signals or signs, road defects, and locations of potential cameras such as ATMs or stores.
Take the time to obtain the contact information for all drivers involved in the accident. Names, addresses, license information, and insurance company information. You should also get the names and contact information for any person who witnessed the accident so they may be contacted later.
Even if you take the time to have emergency responders give you a quick check at the scene, it is a good idea to seek attention at the nearest emergency room or contact your own physician immediately. Because of the body’s natural response to an accident, your body may not be showing immediate symptoms of a potentially serious injury.
Once you have sought medical care, if you have questions about who is liable for your injuries and what steps to take next, you should seek advice from a Bronx drunk driving accident attorney.
My injuries are serious, and the driver’s insurance will only cover a portion of my expenses. What now?
While the drunk driver is likely the primary party responsible for your injuries, there may be other parties who played a role in contributing to the accident. These may include a bar or restaurant bartender who served an inebriated customer, the mechanic or manufacturer of the vehicle, or the driver’s employer if they were working at the time of the accident.
Before you decide to accept a settlement from the driver’s insurer, speak with a lawyer who can review all documents and police reports to determine who else may be at fault. The last thing you want to do is accept a lower settlement than what your out-of-pocket costs may have been.
What types of compensation can I seek following a Bronx drunk driving accident?
Every car accident case is different. There is never a guarantee of an outcome, and various factors will impact your ability to seek specific amounts of compensation.
However, as a general rule, you may seek compensation for:
- Medical expenses – Any medical expenses, including trips to and from your visits to the doctor, can be reimbursed. Special tests, medication, medical equipment, surgical procedures, and nursing care are all included in medical expense compensation. If you have existing medical coverage, your insurance company will seek a subrogation right for any amounts they pay out on your behalf. This means if you are successful in obtaining a settlement or judgment for medical expenses, they will expect to be reimbursed.
- Income lost – Current wages while you recover from your injuries can be claimed as a cost of your injury. In addition, if you are going to be out of work for a long time, or you can’t return to work, your lawyer could also calculate estimated future wages and include them in your claim.
- Other expenses – In some cases, a Bronx drunk driving accident victim has to hire household help. For example, if the victim was caring for children and can’t do so because of their injuries, they may have to hire a daycare provider. Victims may also need to hire other professionals to take care of things they would normally do around the house. These expenses are unexpected and would not have occurred if it weren’t for their injury.
- Pain and suffering – Victims of a drunk driving accident who suffer an injury often deal with a range of issues including lasting pain, emotional issues, and a diminished quality of life. These are considered non-economic losses and may be included in a Bronx drunk driving accident lawsuit.
- Punitive damages – While not every court will award punitive damages, this compensates victims for the wrongful conduct of the person who caused the injury. It also punishes the liable person.
Speak with your car accident attorney about damages which you may include. Variables including the extent of injuries, age of the victim, and the impact of the injury on your future health, will all be considered when filing a lawsuit.
What if I was a passenger of a Bronx drunk driver and suffered injuries?
If you were a passenger in a vehicle driven by a driver who was in a Bronx drunk driving accident, you should seek advice from a lawyer. You may have the same rights as anyone else who suffered an injury in the accident. An experienced accident injury attorney can help you determine the best way forward.
It has only been a couple of days since I was injured in a Bronx drunk driving accident and an insurance adjuster already contacted me. What steps should I take now?
Before you have any discussions with an insurance adjuster, you should speak with a lawyer. The insurance adjusters are going to sound friendly and ask you questions which make it sound like they care about how you are feeling, what your physical condition is following the accident, and they will ask you various questions about the accident. However, speaking to them without a legal representative may be a mistake.
Insurance adjusters may look for ways to minimize or deny your claim. The insurance company will most likely offer a fast settlement to a victim of a Bronx drunk driving accident. But, taking an early settlement may not be the best chance you could receive. In fact, it could be extremely low.
Before you talk to an attorney, you should avoid being involved in any recorded interviews with an adjuster. Never sign any documents an insurance company provides you before having them reviewed by an attorney. Settlement offers that come by mail may include language that prohibits you from obtaining any compensation past the original settlement—even when the settlement is well below what your injuries are going to cost. This liability disclaimer is standard in settlement offers; once you sign this waiver, you are liable for all future medical bills.
The insurance adjuster asked me for access to my medical records. What should I do now?
Insurers may seek access to your medical records. Rather than just asking for access to the records which are relative to the accident, they often seek full access. The reason for this is often to look for information relating to conditions you may have had before the accident. This can be another way for them to reduce the offer they make for your injuries.
Your best bet if you are asked to sign any forms is to advise the adjuster of your intention to have your lawyer review the documents. This way, you are not jeopardizing your rights, and the insurance company knows they will have to deal with your attorney for all negotiations and discussions.
The driver was cited for drunk driving. Do I really need a Bronx drunk driving accident attorney to help me win my case?
While you may think you do not need an attorney, electing to attempt to seek compensation without their experience can be a mistake. An accident attorney can do some things you can’t, including finding expert witnesses to bolster your case, doing the investigatory work necessary to make sure everyone responsible is held accountable, and negotiating with the insurance company.
While you may negotiate with the insurance company on your own, they will have at least one, and likely more, lawyers protecting their interests. Because New York has relatively low liability insurance requirements on a “per accident” basis (only $50,000), if you suffered a serious injury, your out-of-pocket costs can be significantly higher. The insurance company could fight tooth and nail to avoid paying out this amount, and the best way to help make sure you get the compensation you deserve is to have someone serving as your advocate.
The driver is being charged with DUI. What happens to my Bronx drunk driving accident case if they plead out or are found not guilty?
There is a different standard of guilt when it applies to a misdemeanor criminal charge of DUI versus a civil lawsuit. While it may strengthen your civil case if the driver is found guilty, a not guilty finding, or a plea in their criminal matter does not mean the driver is not responsible for your injuries.
Prosecutors decide about filing drunk driving charges based on the evidence they have on hand. This may include the initial police report, a blood alcohol test, or a breathalyzer test. A criminal defense attorney may discredit these items and get them thrown out of a criminal case. However, this does not negate that the other driver injured you.
How long will it take to resolve my Bronx Drunk Driving Accident case and get compensated?
There is no easy answer to this because we need to consider many issues unique to your case. In some cases, insurance companies are aware when you have hired an attorney, you are seeking more than their initial offer. If the insurance company makes an offer that you feel is in line with what you deserve, we can resolve the case more quickly.
Should the insurance company not be willing to cover your losses, then the case will take longer. While most Bronx drunk driving accident cases settle outside of court, finding common ground on an acceptable amount can take time. You should discuss all possible scenarios with your lawyer and talk about a minimum acceptable offer.
How can I afford a Bronx drunk driving accident attorney while I am out of work?
You are focusing on recovering from your injuries. This is necessary after suffering an injury in a Bronx drunk driving accident. Restoring your personal health must always be at the forefront of each decision you make. You and your family may also be facing financial challenges because you are out of work. It can be daunting to face mounting medical bills, the financial strain of paying your regular bills, and the uncertainty of how long it is going to take you to return to work. Affording an attorney under these conditions is a very real concern.
In addition to offering a no-strings-attached free consultation, Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman are prepared to offer a contingency fee for the clients we work with. Unless we secure a settlement or judgment on your behalf, we do not collect attorneys’ fees. Not only that, but you can feel confident that you remain in full control of all negotiations. We know the financial strain of an injury can cause other issues, and we are hoping that knowing we will be fighting hard on your behalf gives you peace of mind and allows you to focus on your recovery.
You will get the personal attention you deserve when you work with Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman. We always strive to get you the maximum compensation you deserve based on the extent of your injuries, the impact on you and your family, and your ability to return to your original work in the future. Contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman today for a free consultation. We can help you understand your legal rights, and answer any additional questions you may have.
Working With Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman’s Bronx Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys
When you work with our team, we will fight hard to get you the maximum compensation you are entitled to for your injuries while you remain in control of each step of this process. We will keep you informed every step of the way and you will always know what options you have.
Bronx drunk driving victims deserve justice, and the best way to get that justice is to work with a lawyer who has experience in handling car accident claims. The financial losses, your loss of mobility, and the increased burden on your family can be difficult. At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA and Sibley Dolman, we work hard to get victims the compensation they deserve for their injuries. Contact our offices today or call us at 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH) for a free consultation and let us put our experience to work on your behalf.
Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
1250 Waters Place, Tower 1, Suite 502
Bronx, NY 10461
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