North Miami Beach Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer
Despite the threat of serious punishment for violating Florida’s laws on drunk driving, statistics show that far too many people still operate vehicles while under the influence of alcohol in North Miami Beach. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), there are more than 5,100 total crashes in the state every year linked to alcohol impairment. The figures hit quite close to home as well, since almost 350 of them occur in Miami-Dade County. If you are injured or lost a loved one to a drunk driver, you might get some closure knowing that the at-fault driver may face harsh penalties. However, criminal sanctions do nothing to compensate you for the devastating losses you sustain.
You might find some comfort in knowing that you have rights as the victim of a drunk driving crash, since there are remedies to recover compensation through the civil court process. The process can be complicated, especially since the responsible driver’s insurance company will fight your claim every step of the way.
To ensure you get a full cup of justice that you deserve, contact the law firm at Gerson & Schwartz. You can set up a free consultation with a drunk driving accident lawyer in North Miami Beach, Florida. Consultations are free so give us a call at 305-371-6000 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.orgInjured by A Drunk Driver in North Miami?
For more than 50 years, the Miami personal injury law offices of Gerson & Schwartz have been helping victims in drunk driving crash cases in Dade County. There are never upfront costs to get started to contact us a North Miami Beach drunk driving accident lawyer attorney to learn the next best steps to find out how we can help you.Drunk Driving Accidents are Common in Florida
State and county statistics compiled by the FLHSMV show the alarming frequency of DUI crashes in Florida:
- In an average year, more than 400 people are killed and 3,000 are injured in drunk driving accidents in Florida;
- There are approximately 15 fatalities resulting from Miami-Dade County DUI collisions; and,
- Almost 170 people are injured in drunk driving crashes in North Miami annually.
Driving under the influence may be a crime, but your rights as the victim of an alcohol-related collision are civil in nature. You must establish the essential elements of a claim based upon negligence and, fortunately, you do not have to prove your case beyond a reasonable doubt. The standard of proof in a civil case is lower, so you could obtain compensation even if the responsible driver is not criminally convicted of DUI.
The civil process in these cases starts by filing a claim with the responsible driver’s insurance company. While it may seem easy to fill out a few forms, you could encounter significant challenges when dealing with the insurer. These companies strive to maximize profits, so your claim is a threat to their financial interests. The adjuster may deny your claim or offer to pay a low amount of compensation to resolve it. To obtain fair, reasonable monetary damages, you may need to initiate a lawsuit in court.
The North Miami Beach drunk driving accident attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz are aggressive in dealing with insurance companies. We will never settle your claim for less than Florida law permits. Your personal injury claim will be filed quickly in court if we are hired to be your attorneysMonetary Damages for Victims of Drunk Driving Accidents
Whether through an insurance claim or litigation, you may be able to recover two types of compensation after being injured in a North Miami Beach DUI crash.
- Economic damages for your defined losses and out-of-pocket costs, such as medical expense and lost wages; and,
- Non-economic damages, which are subjective and not as easy to calculate. Examples include pain and suffering, emotional distress, diminished quality of life, and many others.
Your health is your first priority, so seek appropriate medical care right away. Delaying treatment or not visiting a doctor at all could affect your well-being and your rights to compensation. Then, contact a North Miami Beach drunk driving accident lawyer as soon as possible.
If you are able, there are a few tasks you can take after an accident to support your claim. They include:
- Call police or 911 immediately;
- Exchange contact information with the drunk driver;
- Grab your cell phone and take pictures of the scene, area surrounding the DUI crash, signage, signals, lane markings, and physical characteristics; if an insurance adjuster calls, confirm your contact details, but do not make any other statements. Your words could be used against you if you reveal too much; and,
- Never sign a release or other documentation, since you could be giving up valuable rights.
To learn more about your rights and remedies as the victim of a drunk driving crash, please contact Gerson & Schwartz to schedule your no-cost case evaluation. You can reach our office at 305-371-6000 or toll free at 877-475-2905. Once we have a chance to review your unique circumstances, we can decide how to proceed with your claim.