Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident Attorney
Drunk driving accidents can permanently change the course of victims’ lives. Many of them have severe injuries that can permanently impact the way they live their lives—traumatic brain injuries, amputations, and spinal cord injury, for example. While an Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim cannot restore the strength and mobility you lost as a result of your accident, it could give you a chance to regain funds you need to pay medical bills and help you rebuild your life. If you suffered a drunk driving accident in Atlantic City, contact the Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers at The Levin Firm at (215) 825-5183 today.
Drunk Driving Accidents: The Aftermath
Every day, across the United States, an average 30 people die in drunk driving accidents. Even more suffer severe injuries. Drunk driving accidents can prove to be more hazardous than accidents without the influence of alcohol, since alcohol can slow reaction times and make it more difficult for drivers to regain control of their vehicles.
Drunk driving accidents can cause severe injury, often resulting in life-changing consequences for the victim.
Drunk drivers may suffer these impairments, which make it more difficult for them to control their vehicles:
- Tunnel vision or blurred vision
- Loss of judgment
- Reduced coordination
- Decreased ability to track moving objects, including other vehicles
- Difficulty steering
- Trouble responding to emergency situations
- Poor speed control
- Impaired perception
- Slowed reflexes
- Decreased focus and concentration on the road
Because of these challenges, drunk driving accidents may cause more severe injury than auto accidents with unimpaired drivers. Many victims of drunk driving accidents suffer severe, life-altering injuries.
Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury from a drunk driving accident can cause severe, often lifelong impairment in victims. Victims of even mild traumatic brain injury may notice symptoms more than a year after the accident. In the case of severe traumatic brain injury, victims may suffer lifelong impact. Victims may struggle with focus and concentration, have trouble with creative tasks or cognitive processing, or struggle with sleep (either by sleeping too much or too little).
Traumatic brain injury can also make it difficult for the victim to regulate emotions, so the victim may struggle to respond appropriately to some stimuli. Some victims notice extreme emotional reactions to relatively minor stimuli, while others may react with inappropriate emotions. Some victims with traumatic brain injury even note personality changes.
The mental and emotional challenges associated with traumatic brain injury can make it very difficult for victims to handle normal work tasks. In the case of severe traumatic brain injury, victims may also have trouble with self-care. Some victims may need to rely on a caregiver to help them stay on track and perform normal daily tasks.
Following a severe drunk driving accident, victims may end up with amputations. Sometimes, victims lose limbs during the accident itself. They may lose limbs immediately from the force of impact from the accident or may suffer severe crushing damage that requires the amputation of the limb at the hospital. In other cases, victims may suffer such severe damage to the limb that it cuts off blood flow, which can lead to dead tissue that requires the removal of the limb in the future.
Amputees often require the use of prosthetic devices to help them maintain independence. Unfortunately, prosthetics are often very expensive. Since they often require replacement every three to five years, they can become an ongoing expense throughout the amputee victim’s life. It can take several months before an amputee receives and adjusts to a prosthesis. It may also take significant physical and occupational therapy for the amputee to learn how to effectively use the device.
As a result, victims may need assistance with self-care until they learn how to effectively use their devices. They may also miss work for some time or, in the case of some injuries, permanently lose the ability to complete their previous work tasks.
Spinal Cord Injury
The extreme force associated with a drunk driving accident can cause damage to the spinal cord. If the spinal cord does not sever completely, it results in incomplete spinal cord injury, which can cause decreased mobility or function below the site of the injury. Many victims with incomplete spinal cord injury need to use crutches or braces to get around, or they may need to rest after walking only a short distance.
In the case of complete spinal cord injury, in which the spinal cord severs completely, the victim typically suffers paralysis and decreased function below the site of the injury. Depending on where on the body the injury occurs, victims could experience paralysis from the waist down or from the neck down.
Victims with complete spinal cord injury typically need to use a wheelchair to get around. Many lose the ability to complete their former work functions, especially if they needed to move around or relied on physical prowess to complete their job duties. Others may find themselves needing to miss work for a long time while they recover from their injuries and learn how to cope with their new limitations. Spinal cord injuries can also prevent many victims from participating in the activities they once enjoyed.
Severe broken bones can result from drunk driving accidents. In many cases, these injuries can result in permanent mobility challenges. Victims with broken bones, especially multiple broken bones, may struggle to perform self-care as they move toward a recovery. Broken bones can also make it difficult for many victims to complete their work responsibilities or engage in activities that they enjoy.
For example, victims with broken bones in the hands or arms—common in drivers in auto accidents since they often brace against the steering wheel—may struggle to type or handle paperwork. Victims with broken legs may have significant mobility challenges during their recoveries.
An Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident Claim Can Help You Claim Compensation for Your Injuries in an Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident
Following a drunk driving accident in Atlantic City, a personal injury claim could help you seek compensation for your injuries. Consult an Atlantic City drunk driving accident attorney, like those at The Levin Firm, as soon after your accident as possible.
Our Atlantic City drunk driving accident attorneys could:
- Collect evidence regarding your drunk driving accident and your claim.
- Give you a better idea of the compensation you deserve, which could help you determine whether to accept a settlement offer or continue negotiating.
- Negotiate on your behalf and handle communication with the drunk driver’s insurance company.
The sooner you contact an Atlantic City drunk driving accident attorney, the sooner that attorney can start working on your behalf.
The Compensation You Deserve After an Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident
Many drunk driving accident victims first want to know, “How much compensation could I expect after a drunk driving accident in Atlantic City?” The compensation you may receive for your injuries may depend on several key factors.
1. Who caused your accident? The party that caused your accident may carry auto insurance that could pay out your Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim after a drunk driving accident. Other parties may be involved as well, such as auto manufacturers or the driver’s employer. In the case where a commercial driver was involved, they may also carry liability insurance that could help provide protection to both the company and you in the event of an accident. The limits of that insurance policy may also serve as the limits of the compensation you can receive for your injuries.
2. What injuries did you suffer, and what medical bills did you face as you recovered from those injuries? Medical expenses can quickly pile up after a drunk driving accident. Even if you suffered only minor injuries, you may need to visit the emergency room after your accident. Victims with serious injuries may require long-term hospitalization, multiple procedures, and ongoing care for their injuries.
You could include compensation for all your medical expenses as part of your Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim, including:
- Emergency care
- Emergency transport
- Surgeries and procedures
- Durable medical equipment, including crutches and braces
- A stay in a long-term care facility
- Ongoing medical care, including follow-up visits with the supervising doctor
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- In-home care, if needed
In some cases, you may need to make modifications to your home to make it possible for you to continue to function more independently. You may, for example, need to modify your bathroom to make it wheelchair-accessible, or you may need to install ramps or widen doorways. Victims whose injuries require these home modifications may include those modifications as part of their Atlantic City drunk driving accident claims. Consult our Atlantic City drunk driving accident attorneys at The Levin Firm to learn more about how to include those expenses today.
3. How much work did you have to miss due to your drunk driving accident? Many Atlantic City drunk driving accident claims also include lost wages due to inability to work following the accident. Severe injuries can keep victims out of work for quite some time, especially if the victim has injuries that make it impossible for him or her to complete work responsibilities.
While some employers will work with accident victims to help them return to work as soon as possible in spite of their injuries, others may not have the ability to modify job responsibilities or expectations enough for victims to return to work until they have made a full recovery. In other cases, victims may permanently lose the ability to perform their jobs. In that case, they may need to claim lost earning potential as part of their Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim.
4. How did your Atlantic City drunk driving accident injuries impact you, in terms of pain and suffering? Many types of injuries can cause significant physical pain and suffering. Not only that, however, you may suffer mental and emotional anguish due to your injuries. Many victims find that they can no longer enjoy many of their favorite activities due to their injuries. You could try to pursue compensation for your pain and suffering as part of your Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim after a drunk driving accident.
Determining the Liable Party in an Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident
The driver who causes an accident could ultimately bear liability for whatever happens behind the wheel. That driver chose to get behind the wheel while inebriated, which caused the accident. In Atlantic City, however, drunk driving accidents fall under New Jersey’s Dram Shop Act.
According to this statute, bars and restaurants should serve neither underage individuals nor those who appear visibly intoxicated. If a bar or restaurant chooses to serve a clearly intoxicated individual or underage individual, and that individual goes on to cause an accident, the bar or restaurant may share liability for injuries suffered in that accident.
Other factors could also contribute to drunk driving accidents. As in car accidents with sober drivers, mechanical failures—including tire blowouts and engine failure—can lead to serious problems behind the wheel. While a drunk driver may struggle more to control a vehicle in the case of mechanical failure, the auto or part manufacturer or a mechanic that recently worked on the vehicle may still share liability for an accident caused by mechanical failure.
Consult an Atlantic City drunk driving accident attorney to learn more about who may have caused or contributed to your drunk driving accident in Atlantic City. If an attorney identifies multiple parties that contributed to the accident, you may file an Atlantic City drunk driving accident claim against each liable party. This could increase the compensation you ultimately receive for your injuries.
Contact an Atlantic City Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Today
If you suffered serious injuries in an Atlantic City drunk driving accident, our Atlantic City personal injury lawyers could help you better understand your legal rights and give you a better idea of the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Contact The Levin Firm today at (215) 825-5183 to schedule a free consultation.
The Levin Firm | Atlantic City Office
2 Convention Blvd, Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Toll Free: 877.825.8542