Getting hurt in a drunk driving accident can upend your life in every aspect. You or a loved one could have been the victim of a drunk driving accident on Long Island. The Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP can help you pursue compensation. You might have a personal injury claim. Someone who provided alcohol to an already-intoxicated driver or an underage drinker could be responsible for your losses.
Our team is ready to discuss your legal options with you in a free case review.
The Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP Has Achieved Successful Results for Clients
Our New York DWI accident attorneys, Richard Jaffe, Stephen Cohen, and our other associates have 100-plus years of combined experience in accident litigation. This includes cases where we represented people injured by drunk drivers.
Some of our case results are as follows:
- $4 million for a motorcyclist who was paralyzed after a car hit him
- $1.5 million for a gentleman who needed a lumbar fusion after he was rear-ended
- $1.3 million for a woman who suffered fractures in her nose, neck, and back after getting T-boned by an unmarked police car
- $1.2 million for a child who fractured their skull in a two-car collision
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a drunk driving accident in New York, you are not alone. The Long Island lawyers of the Law Office Cohen & Jaffe, LLP will stand with you. We will pursue every available dollar of compensation.
We also help clients with the immediate concerns and hardships created by a personal injury accident. These can include finding doctors and holding off creditors while a legal claim is underway.
Hearing from the Clients Themselves
Some of our past clients wrote about their experience with using the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP for legal representation.
See what they have to say below:
“I knew I had made the right decision when I decided on Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP. From the beginning to the end the entire staff made me feel as if I was family…” – Rosa
“I’m pretty particular at selecting trusted business advisors… and, when it comes to attorneys, I have to know I have the best. Too much at stake. Jaffe is the best. I wouldn’t have anyone but him as my attorney so I implore him to stay healthy!” – David
These reviews are just two of many that our clients have left. Client satisfaction is our priority. We will work to get the compensation you and your family need following a drunk driving accident.
Who Can We Hold Responsible for a DWI Accident in New York?
In most cases, the drunk driver is solely responsible for the accident and injuries. However, there are cases in which others contributed to a drunk driving crash. We can hold them liable as well.
Your lawyer can figure out if anyone else contributed to the crash by:
- Talking to witnesses
- Examining video footage
- Reviewing the police and toxicology reports
Dram Shop Law
New York State adopted dram shop laws intended to hold accountable those who would sell alcohol to minors or to drinkers who are already visibly intoxicated. A New York bar, restaurant, or another establishment could violate this law. The patrons they serve could end up causing an accident. In this case, the bar or restaurant may be held liable for injuries and losses that result from the accident.
The Driver’s Employer
If the driver who hit you was working at the time of the accident, the driver’s employer is legally responsible for their driver’s actions. A claim could seek compensation through the employer’s business liability insurance. This policy might have a higher coverage maximum than an individual’s insurance.
Your Legal Options As an Impaired Driving Accident Victim
You, as a victim, have a few options for recovering compensation after a drunk driving accident on Long Island. After reviewing your case, your lawyer can determine which one best fits your needs.
Because New York is a no-fault state, you’ll need to turn to your own personal injury protection (PIP) coverage at first to get your medical bills paid, even if a drunk driver caused your injuries. However, if your injuries could be severe—as defined by New York State law. Your own insurance might not cover all your losses (which is very likely). In this situation, you may sue the drunk driver for additional compensation.
You might also have the option to file a third-party car insurance case against the at-fault driver’s auto liability insurance. This could allow you to secure compensation for your medical expenses from bodily injury and vehicle repairs.
For these reasons, you might find a NY DWI victims’ attorney with our firm to be beneficial. They can represent you and serve as your legal advocate if you were injured in a drunk driving accident.
Personal Injury or Wrongful Death Lawsuit
A person injured in a car accident may also pursue a personal injury lawsuit. This allows the injured party to seek more compensation than PIP or auto liability insurance pay. The same idea goes for those pursuing damages for their loved one who passed in the crash.
Pursuing a lawsuit requires you to be able to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the insurer or a court that the other party was legally responsible for the accident. We have a limited time to take action, too. Depending on what happened to you or your family member, you can file one of two lawsuits.
- Personal injury: CVP § 214 generally allows three years for claimants to bring a lawsuit.
- Wrongful death: EPT § 5-4.1 gives personal representatives about two years to submit their lawsuit.
Failure to comply with these deadlines might prohibit you from pursuing any compensation for your losses. If you let us know about your case soon, we can make sure we get all your paperwork in before the deadline expires.
What Can You Recover from Your DUI Accident Injuries in NY?
To demand compensation, you must show your costs and losses. New York law recognizes economic and non-economic costs and losses in a personal injury claim. Economic damages are monetary losses, such as the cost of medical bills and property damage (the replacement of your vehicle or repairs). Non-economic damages are awarded for your pain and suffering.
A fatal drunk driving accident may be the basis for a wrongful death claim, which allows the victim’s survivors to seek specific types of damages. These damages usually include compensation for:
- The decedent’s medical costs
- Funeral and burial expenses
- The loss of the decedent’s income, support, guidance, and services
The driver’s actions could equate to gross negligence or reckless disregard for human life. We might argue this if the other driver had an extremely high blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level. You might be entitled to seek punitive damages.
You Must Demonstrate the Other Party’s Negligence to Recover Compensation
Demonstrating legal responsibility for a car accident requires showing negligence and causation. Negligence refers to when the other driver broke a traffic rule or drove with unreasonable carelessness.
They might have done this because they were drunk or otherwise violating New York traffic law. Causation means that the driver’s negligence was a direct cause of the crash, which led to your injuries.
We Offer All Our Services on a Contingency-Fee Basis
Proving negligence, assessing your damages, and filing a claim or lawsuit – among other tasks – might seem impossible to do after you’re trying to recover after an accident. Our lawyers can take charge of your entire case on a no-win, no-fee structure.
In other words, we will work for you for no upfront, hourly, or out-of-pocket fees. We take a percentage out of your award to pay for our services. If we can’t recover compensation for you, you are not to pay us anything.
With this payment arrangement, there is no financial risk.
What You Can Do to Help Your Case
Of course, your lawyer can handle your whole case. There are things you can do to protect yourself and your right to compensation, though.
Keeping a Journal
Every day, jot down:
- How you’re feeling physically and emotionally
- Activities you can and cannot do
- What you did during the day
- Details of your treatment plan
Abstaining from Social Media
It is understandable if you want to share your horrible experience of the drunk driving accident with your friends and family. However, the insurance company might find a way to access the posts and twist your words. They might do this to protect their bottom line during negotiations.
Directing All Phone Calls to Your Lawyer
When the insurer asks for a recorded statement, they might try to get you to admit fault or say that your injuries aren’t that bad. We’re familiar with these tactics. So, refer them to us if they ever call you.
New York Drunk Driving Laws
New York has multiple DUI laws meant to help law enforcement and criminal justice officials combat drunk driving. A person arrested for alcohol consumption after a motor vehicle accident in New York may be charged under a state law addressing:
- DWI (driving while intoxicated): A DWI charge indicates a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher.
- DWAI (driving while ability impaired): This is a charge available if a driver’s BAC is between .05% and .07%. Alo, the driver could have otherwise demonstrated impairment in roadside tests or while under police observation.
- DWAI/drugs: This charge may be filed if police suspect a driver has ingested non-alcoholic substances that have impaired his or her ability to drive.
- Drugs: Recreational drugs, prescription medications, and over-the-counter drugs can alter motor function and cognitive abilities enough to impair driving.
- Chemical test refusal: According to New York DWI laws, a driver has the right to refuse a blood, breath, or urine test for BAC. However, those who refuse to be tested and are convicted of DWI could lose their license and be fined a $500 fine.
- Zero tolerance law: Anyone under the age of 21 (the legal age to drink alcohol) who is caught driving with a BAC of .02% or higher can be charged with DWI.
If the driver who hit you and left you injured is charged with a drunk driving violation or a related charge, they may face criminal prosecution. However, a criminal conviction will not provide compensation to cover your medical bills.
You will need to file a separate civil lawsuit holding the drunk driver accountable for the injuries and financial losses you have sustained from the drunk driving accident. A personal injury lawsuit proceeds separately from any criminal case.
Call the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP for a Free Consultation
You or a loved one could have been the victim of a drunk driving accident on Long Island. The Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP will stand up for you and pursue every dollar of compensation available to you.
Call us today at (516) 358-6900 for a free case evaluation. We can even come to you to meet with you should that be more convenient.
For a free legal consultation with a drunk driver victim accidents lawyer serving Long Island, call 516-358-6900