Thomas Carroll Blauvelt

3 sources of compensation after a New Jersey drunk driving wreck

There are numerous laws restricting certain behaviors when people drive. In New Jersey, people generally need to follow all posted signage, comply with the speed limit and avoid engaging in behaviors that are known to be risky, such as drunk driving.

Impaired motorists often assume that they can get home safely and then end up causing a preventable and potentially tragic collision. Those involved in a drunk driving crash should not have to accept and absorb the costs created by someone else’s bad choices. Any compensation that an injury victim seeks will require intentional effort on their part, as repayment of losses is not automatic. Therefore, drunk driving victims need to know their options to make proper use of them.

Insurance coverage

Every motorist in New Jersey should have a liability insurance policy that will pay for other people’s losses if they cause a crash. However, both standard and basic policies in New Jersey have very low levels of coverage for bodily injuries, which means that those involved in major collisions might not be able to claim enough based on their losses.

A lawsuit against the drunk driver

Someone who breaks the law and then injures other people in a car crash as a result is personally responsible for the consequences of that misconduct. Both those with injuries and those who have lost a loved one in a deadly drunk driving crash can potentially seek additional compensation beyond insurance from the motorist who drove while impaired. Provided that they have sufficient resources, the lawsuit can help more fully cover the costs caused by the collision.

A dram shop lawsuit

In New Jersey, there are numerous laws related to the lawful service of alcohol at bars or restaurants. Those rules include a prohibition on serving those who are under the age of 21 and also rules against continuing to provide drinks for those who are already clearly intoxicated. If someone drinks as a minor or continues drinking while obviously drunk at a licensed establishment, that business may have some liability for the crash.

The dram shop law creates legal and financial liability for businesses that put short-term profits from alcohol service above public safety but limits liability for legally compliant, licensed businesses. In scenarios where the drunk driver doesn’t have adequate personal resources to compensate those harmed in a collision they caused, a dram shop claim can be a viable option for those trying to cover medical bills and lost wages.

Learning more about the different options for financial compensation after a drunk driving crash may help injury victims who are worried about covering their financial losses following a wreck.

FindLaw Network

As Seen In

  • New Jersey Monthly
  • MTV
  • Super Lawyers
  • app | Part of the USA Today Network