The amount of people who lose their lives or are injured in drunk driving accidents every year is overwhelming. On New York roadways, drunk driving is one of the primary causes of automobile accidents in the state. Every day across the US, over 29 people will lose their lives in a drunk driving accident.
In New York, 3,752 people were killed in crashes caused by a drunk driver between 2003 and 2012. Any time somebody gets behind the wheel while intoxicated, they are making a reckless decision that could likely end in injuries and fatalities. These accidents happen all year round but tend to peak at holiday times such as Christmas and New Year’s. If you’ve been injured in a drunk driving accident in New York, determining how to move forward can be difficult without experienced legal representation and an understanding of DUI accident law.
Drunk Driving as a Crime or Civil Matter
Drunk driving is not just a civil matter but is also a criminal one, in a similar way that hit-and-run accidents are considered to be civil crimes. Since criminal charges result from drunk driving incidents, they involve a plaintiff who was harmed in a negative manner. Those who have been injured have a right to bring a claim against the party who caused them harm.
However, a civil suit is an entirely separate process from these criminal proceedings. While a criminal proceeding for drunk driving is formed to protect everybody in the public from harm by a drunk driver, a civil case is meant to help you recover a variety of damages in your case.
Injury and Wrongful Death Claims
If you are injured in one of a crash caused by a drunk driver, you have a right to bring an injury lawsuit against the negligent party involved. You might be able to receive a variety of damages to cover the cost of your medical treatment, lost wages from missing time at work, damages for your property, and emotional suffering. You have the right to both economic and non-economic damages under the law.
Additionally, if you have tragically lost a loved one due to a drunk driving accident, you or a personal representative of your loved one’s estate might be able to bring a claim for damages. Wrongful death suits in New York are a variation of standard personal injury claims and can help a family compensate for a variety of emotional and financial losses they have sustained.
In some cases, because the accused driver made the reckless decision to get behind the wheel of a car and drive while under the influence, punitive damages might also be issued. Punitive damages are meant to not only compensate the victim but to punish the defendant for their reckless behavior.
New York DUI Accident Attorney
Many people are injured or killed in drunk driving accidents every year. If you or someone you love has been negatively impacted by a drunk driver who caused a devastating accident, you have a right to fight for compensation. The New York personal injury attorneys at Antin, Ehrlich, & Epstein, L.L.P. are here to help you during this difficult time. We have successfully handled various drunk driving claims throughout New York City and are here to offer our support. Contact us today at 212-221-5999 for more information.