Pain and Suffering Compensation Netcong, NJ

Denville NJ Pain and Suffering Compensation LawyersThe lives of accident victims and their families can be changed in an instant. For those who suffer serious injuries such as brain injuryspinal cord injurypermanent disability, or even wrongful death, it is possible to recover damages beyond mere reimbursement through a successful personal injury claim. Perhaps the most common and the most valuable form of compensation in personal injury cases is that of pain and suffering. Many victims are entitled to financial consideration to compensate for both the physical pain and the emotional suffering to which they were exposed as a result of an accident.

Today, our personal injury attorneys will be defining pain and suffering compensation for personal injury cases, discuss how it is calculated, and much more.

Denville, NJ Pain and Suffering Compensation Lawyers

Our Denville pain and suffering compensation lawyers understand that there are two types of damages awardable through personal injury claims: economic and non-economic. Simply put, victims are entitled to both straight one-to-one reimbursement for incurred expenses AND additional considerations which are meant to protect victims, punish wrongdoing entities, and compensate for the undue suffering of the victim and their families.

Economic or Compensatory damages may include:

  • Medical expenses such as doctor’s bills, ambulance fees, rehabilitation costs, hospital bills, and more
  • Lost wages for work that was missed in the past, present, and projected into the future
  • Property damage which was sustained as the result of the injurious accident

Non-Economic or Non-Compensatory damages may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional Anguish
  • Wrongful Death
  • Loss of Companionship
  • Loss of Consortium
  • Punitive Damages

How is Pain and Suffering Calculated in Morris County?

As mentioned previously, pain and suffering compensation has the potential to make up the highest percentage of an overall personal injury settlement or verdict. That is due to the way damages are calculated in New Jersey. In the majority of cases, pain and suffering is determined using a calculation based on your incurred medical expenses. This can include all expenses which you have incurred or may incur in the future. At this point, it is a matter of your Morris County personal injury attorneys proving the severity of your injuries.

The amount by which your medical bills will be multiplied is heavily dependent on the severity of your injuries. For example, let us look at two scenarios where the same accident led to different injuries, and therefore a different pain and suffering settlement.

Susan and Janine are both injured in car accidents. They both have medical expenses in the amount of $10,000. Susan has suffered a sprained neck and several lacerations, which are expected to fully heal. Janine has suffered multiple fractures which has led to a permanent disability. In these cases, Susan’s medical bills may be multiplied by a smaller number between one (1) and three (3) whereas Janine’s bills will be multiplied by five (5), ten (10), or even more. Due to the nature of their injuries, Janine may be entitled to $100,000 in pain and suffering while Susan may only walk away with $10,000.

Injured in a Serious Accident? Contact a Morristown Personal Injury Attorney Today

At The Law Offices of Michael P. Burakoff, P.A.our legal team works with the families of accident victims, not just our clients. We believe that this dedication to the attorney-client relationship allows us to deliver more personalized and ultimately more high quality legal service for those who have been injured in serious accidents. Attorney Burakoff has decades of experience serving local Morris and Sussex County communities such as Hopatcong, Morristown, Newton, Netcong, Roxbury, Mt. Olive, Rockaway, and all of Northern New Jersey. Our attorneys have secured multiple million dollar settlements and verdicts for our local clients and we will work hard to make sure you and your family get the financial support you deserve.

For a free and confidential consultation regarding your accident, injuries, and personal injury claim, please contact us online or through our Morristown or Newton, NJ offices today by calling (973) 520-0525.

Bus Accident Results in Fatality and Injury in Mount Olive NJ

Wrongful Death Attorney Parsippany NJEarlier this month, a fatal accident occurred when a school bus allegedly attempted an illegal u-turn on Interstate 80 in Mount Olive, New Jersey.

The bus, driven by Paramus Board of Education employee Hudy Muldrow Sr., 77, was carrying 44 passengers as part of a school trip. Tragically, two of the passengers, teacher Jennifer Williamson, 51, and an unnamed student of ten years of age were killed as a result of the accident.

Muldrow is now facing two counts of vehicular homicide, also known as “death by auto”. While these charges will be decided on in criminal court, whether or not any kind of civil personal injury lawsuit will be filed is yet to be answered.

Wrongful Death Attorney Parsippany NJ

The first type of claim that might be filed in this case is that of a wrongful death claim. Wrongful death claims in New Jersey are filed with the purpose of seeking recovery for specific types of damages when a family member is killed by the reckless or negligent actions of another person or party(s).

Wrongful death damages include compensation potentially for:

  • The loss of the financial support the deceased provided to the family
  • The loss of the “companionship, consortium, guidance, and kinship” the deceased provided to the family
  • The loss of intangible benefits provided by the deceased to the family such as care=taking, home-making, child-raising, and more
  • Expenses related to any medical costs incurred before the deceased actually passed
  • Expenses resulting from a funeral and burial

However, unlike personal injury claims, wrongful death claims can not recover punitive damages or pain and suffering damages.

Of course, if you are considering filing a wrongful death claim on behalf of a deceased family member, it is highly recommended that you first consult with an experienced Parsippany wrongful death attorney so that you can better understand your rights and options, and navigate the entire claims process in an effective, informed, and ultimately successful manner.

Negligent Driving Injury Lawyer Netcong NJ

While this bus and truck accident did result in the tragic deaths of two different people, many others were also injured when the bus was struck from behind by a dump truck. Depending on the extent of the injuries suffered, these individuals may wish to consider filing a personal injury claim in order to recover compensation for their medical expenses, lost income if they are unable to work, and the physical and emotional pain and suffering they experienced due to the accident and resulting injuries.

However, as with any personal injury claim, some act or acts of recklessness or negligence must be proven in order to secure personal injury compensation. In this case, several key factors could potentially be considered negligence.

  1. According to reports, the bus driver missed his exit, and then attempted to correct for this by making an illegal U-turn through the mediation reserved only for emergency vehicles. If proven true, such an act of negligent driving could potential result in a successful personal injury claim against the driver and his insurance provider.
  2. Apparently, driver Muldrow has also received a total of 8 speeding tickets, and has had his license suspended 14 different times from 1975 to present. With this kind of driving record, a case could potentially be made that he was hired negligently by his employer. An experienced negligent driving injury attorney may be able to make the case that any entity who is employing individuals to drive others should never hire a person with such a driving record, and that doing so was an act of negligence in-and-of-itself.

Again, due to the stringent requirements for proving negligence, proving the full extent of the injuries and damages suffered, and ultimately recovering full and fair compensation in any personal injury case, retaining the counsel of an experienced injury lawyer is highly recommended any time you are seeking compensation for your injuries and accident-related damages.

Contact A Morristown Personal Injury Attorney Today

At The Law Offices of Michael P. Burakoff, we have extensive experience helping our clients and their families to recover full and fair compensation in wrongful death and personal injury claims of all kinds in towns across Morris County and Sussex County, including Parsippany, Netcong, Morristown, Newton, Dover, Mount Olive, Denville, Hopatcong, Morris Plains, Hanover, and the surrounding communities.

Attorney Michael Burakoff has a unique approach to personal injury law in that he strongly believes in not only keeping his clients highly informed throughout the process, but also involving their family as well. This is because he understands that any kind of serious injury will affect the whole family, and not just the injury victim themselves. By providing informative, inclusive, and highly effective legal counsel, Michael Burakoff aims to lessen the stress involved with the accident/recovery process, and ensure that your family’s future is protected and secure.

To speak with Michael Burakoff and our legal team today in a free and confidential consultation regarding any kind of accident you or a family member has suffered, your options for securing personal injury or wrongful death compensation, and how exactly we can help you and your family to do so, please contact us online, or through either our Morristown office or our Newton office at (973) 520-0525.

What Should I Do if I Have Been in a Car Accident?

Morris Plains Car Accident Injury AttorneyBeing involved in any kind of motor vehicle accident can be a traumatic experience, and sometimes life-changing. It can also be a little overwhelming as there will be a variety of concerned parties, including insurance companies, the police, eye-witnesses, medical and emergency response personnel, and potentially even a personal injury attorney.

With that being said, here are a few tips to help you safely and efficiently recover from any kind of motor vehicle accident, including a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or a bus or train accident.

“Ensure Your Safety, the Safety of Your Passengers, and the Safety of Other Involved Parties”

Morris Plains Car Accident Injury Attorney

The most important thing you can do anytime you are in a car accident is to first ensure your own safety, the safety of your passengers, and the safety of other involved parties. Depending on where your accident occurred, this may involve exiting your vehicle and getting out of harm’s way of fires or oncoming traffic. Or, if your accident occurred on a busy highway like I-80, it may be safer to remain in your vehicle rather than risking walking across the highway and oncoming traffic.

This can be a bit of a judgement call, and there may be scenarios where you are unable to move even if you felt like it was needed. The most important thing to remember is the time-proven idea of “safety-first”.

“Call Emergency Responders”

Parsippany Highway Accident Lawyer

Once you feel that you and your passengers are out of immediate danger, your next step should be to call emergency responders if they haven’t already been notified by dailing 911.

Emergency response will include ambulances and medical personnel, police to secure the scene of the accident and document what has happened, and potentially even the fire department if there is risk or evidence of a fire.

The sooner emergency responders are contacted, the sooner they can arrive to the scene of the car accident, and begin helping all involved parties.

“Record as Much Evidence as Possible”

Dover Motor Vehicle Injury Attorney

Even though it is the responsibility of responding law enforcement officers to document the scene of the accident and the given statements of involved parties and witnesses to the accident, if you are able to, it can go a long way to record certain pieces of information yourself.

This can include things like taking photos of the accident, getting the names and numbers of eye-witnesses, and generally recording any other information which may be relevant to your accident in terms of what happened, how did it happen, why did it happen, etc.

Again, while this is generally the responsibility of the police, the more information you have the better when it comes to working with insurance companies, and securing compensation for your accident, injuries, and damages, whether through a claim with your own insurance provider (a first-person claim) or a claim with the insurance provider of the responsible part (a third-party personal injury claim).

“Seek Medical Attention”

East Hanover Accident and Injury Lawyer

Seeking medical attention if you have been hurt in a car accident seems like an obvious next step. However, even if you just feel “shaken up” but ok, it is still critical that you seek medical attention as quickly as possible after your accident.

Some injuries take time to present themselves, for example brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and internal injuries, and the longer you wait to visit a doctor, the worse these injuries can become.

In addition, the less time there is between your car accident and when you speak with a doctor and actually diagnose your injuries, the easier it will be to directly link those same injuries to your accident. If too much time transpires between the two events, insurance companies can argue that you were hurt in some other way, and that your injuries were not caused by your accident (meaning, they don’t have to pay for them).

Bottom line. if you were in an accident, go see a doctor ASAP.

“Speak with an Experienced Injury Attorney”

Morris County Personal Injury Attorney

Finally, if you have been involved in a car accident, trust that you WILL be hearing from your insurance company soon thereafter, and possibly the insurance company of other involved parties.

Insurance companies are for profit businesses, meaning their profits come before your own well-being. As helpful as they may seem, it is highly recommended that you speak with an experienced Morris County injury attorney before speaking with any insurance company.

By first speaking with an attorney, you can get a better sense of whether or not you may have a case for seeking injury compensation from other responsible parties, what you should and shouldn’t say to the insurance companies, and what your next steps are in the car accident injury process.

Contact a Morris County and Sussex County Car Accident Injury Lawyer Today

At The Law Offices of Michael P. Burakoff, we have extensive experience helping our clients and their families to recover full and fair car accident injury compensation in towns across New Jersey, Morris County, and Sussex County, including Dover, Netcong, Morris Plains, East Hanover, Hopatcong, Denville, Newton, Parsippany, Morristown, Florham Park, and more.

Attorney Michael Burakoff believes in working closely and attentively not only with his clients, but with their families as well. This is because he understands the extreme strain that a serious injury can place on any family, and the need to have all involved parties actually involved in the process.

To speak with Michael Burakoff and our legal team today in a free and confidential consultation regarding any kind of accident or motor vehicle accident, your options for recovering compensation for your injuries and damages, and how exactly we can help you to do so, please contact us online, or through either our Morristown office or our Newton office at (973) 520-0525.

How Does My NJ Car Insurance Policy Affect My Ability to Seek Injury Compensation in Morris County and Sussex County?

Car Accident Injury Lawyer Morris County NJWhen a driver is injured in a motor vehicle accident, the first place the injured driver will turn to for financial compensation is their own insurance company. However, especially for more serious injuries, that same insurance coverage may not be sufficient when it comes to paying for medical expenses and lost income if the injured driver cannot work.

In addition, pain and suffering damages (which usually represent the largest portion of a personal injury claim) are not awarded as part of first-person claims (claims filed by an injured party with their own insurance company).

So, if you have been injured while driving your car, you may not recover full compensation from your own insurance company for your car accident damages. However, you may also be limited from seeking compensation from other responsible parties depending on what type of insurance coverage you have purchased.

Here is what you need to know regarding NJ car insurance policies, and how they can impact your rights and ability to seek compensation from a third party when injured in a car accident in Morris County or Sussex County.

Parsippany Car Accident Injury Lawyer Discusses “Limited Right to Sue” Car Insurance

In New Jersey, there are two specific types of injury protection offered as part of your car insurance policy: “Limited Right to Sue” policies and “Unlimited Right to Sue” policies.

Limited Right to Sue policies tend to appear more attractive, as subscribers are offered a much lower insurance premium. However, the catch is that limited right so sue car insurance policies only allow injured drivers to file personal injury claims against other responsible drivers for very specific types of injuries, those being:

  • Loss of limb, Disfigurement, or Serious Scarring
  • Permanent Injuries
  • Bone fractures
  • Death of the driver (wrongful death)
  • Loss of fetus

Consider the following scenario: you are injured in a car accident caused by another drunk driver. You suffer serious injuries to your spine, but those same injuries are projected to heal in two year’s time. Your spinal cord injuries result in extremely high medical and rehabilitative costs, and prevent you from working for some time. However, since those same injuries are not technically “permanent”, and you have purchased a “limited right to sue” car insurance policy, you most likely would not be able to file a car accident injury claim against the negligent driver who caused your injuries.

So as attractive as the reduced premium of these limited right to sue policies can appear, they do come with extreme risk when it comes to your ability to seek injury compensation for car accident injuries.

Morristown Auto Accident Injury Attorney Discusses “Unlimited Right to Sue” Car Insurance

On the other hand, unlimited right to sue car insurance policies allow injured drivers to seek personal injury compensation from other responsible third parties for any type of injury.

Considering the many dangers New Jersey drivers face, including distracted drivers, drunk drivers, negligent drivers, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, bus accidents, and more, having the flexibility to seek car accident injury compensation from other negligent drivers or parties for any type of injury is a much more attractive insurance policy option, despite its greater up-front cost.

Contact A Car Accident Injury Attorney with Offices in Morris County and Sussex County Today

At The Law Offices of Michael P. Burakoff, we have extensive experience recovering full and fair car accident injury compensation for our clients and their families in towns across Morris County and Sussex County, including Parsippany, Morristown, Netcong, Newton, Denville, Dover, Rockaway, East Hanover, Morris Plains, Florham Park, and more.

Attorney Michael Burakoff has the unique approach of working closely not only with his clients, but with their families as well. This is because he understands just how difficult a car accident injury can be, and the impacts it can have on a family’s financial and emotional stability.

To discuss your unique needs, situation, and options moving forward after any kind of car accident in a free and confidential consultation. with our legal team today, please contact us online, or through either our Morristown office or our Newton office at (973) 520-0525.

When looking at accident causes, the discussion often turns to things like drunk driving, distracted driving or teen drivers. All of these things factor in, but studies have shown that one of the biggest causes is far more simple: failure to yield.

The problem — when one driver fails to yield the right of way — is that the other driver probably assumes he or she knows exactly what’s happening. This can lead to accidents that could have been avoided, but they’re impossible to predict.

For instance, perhaps you’re driving down the interstate at 70 mph. Technically, you have the right of way. It’s nice to move over for merging vehicles at on-ramps, but it’s not always possible. Maybe there’s a car in front of you, another behind and another to your left.

You assume that driver will yield the right of way to you, but if he or she doesn’t do so, there’s almost nothing you can do to avoid the crash. The statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) show that this is a leading cause of car wrecks with senior citizens. In particular, it’s also an issue for long-haul truckers, who are constantly trying to watch out for merging traffic that doesn’t yield properly.

This is just one example; it can also happen by driveways, at four-way stops, at red lights and, of course, at yield signs. In all of those situations, the problem is the same: Drivers predict what others are going to do and then those other drivers make mistakes that cause accidents.

Have you been hurt in a crash like this? Be sure you know all of your legal rights to compensation.

Source: Road and Track, “The 9 Most Dangerous Things Drivers Do,” Benjamin Preston, accessed Aug. 10, 2017

Those of us who don’t have kids to transport to and from school often choose small vehicles. They don’t use a lot of gas, and they are easy to maneuver in and out of parking spaces. Many of them are also very cool-looking. However, they also account for the highest rate of traffic fatalities, according to a new report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

The IIHS studied 2014 vehicles and older of all sizes and the number of fatalities reported between 2012 and 2015 according to the federal government. Over half of the mid-size and larger vehicles included in the study had the lowest fatality rates. Some had no fatalities in those years.

The highest fatality rates occurred in two models of mini cars — the Kia Rio sedan and the Hyundai Accent sedan. The larger fatality rate was attributed to the fact that smaller vehicles don’t provide the protection for occupants that larger vehicles do.

The IIHS researchers analyzed fatal crash data collected by the federal government between 2012 and 2015. They found overall, smaller vehicles on the road don’t protect occupants the way that larger ones do, reports CBS News correspondent Anna Werner.

Mini and small cars topped the IIHS list of vehicles with the highest number of driver deaths. The Hyundai Accent sedan and the Kia Rio sedan, both mini cars, had the highest rate of deaths.

That’s not to say that larger vehicles guarantee safety. Two large vehicles, the Nissan Titan Crew Cab and the Dodge Challenger, were among the top ten vehicles with the highest driver fatality rates.

Of course, when purchasing a vehicle, safety features are key. It’s important to do your homework. However, no matter how safe your vehicle, a reckless or negligent driver can still cause serious injury or worse. That’s why it’s essential to hold at-fault drivers legally responsible for their actions.

Source: CBS News, “Mini and small cars have highest traffic deaths rates, IIHS report says,” May 25, 2017

Despite the increasing laws across the country against cellphone use and texting while driving, even more people than ever are dying on America’s roads because of distracted drivers. The number of distracted driving-related fatalities rose by nearly 9 percent between 2015 and 2016, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

While teens and other young drivers are involved in these texting and driving accidents, an official with State Farm puts some of the blame on the parents they’ve been riding in the car with since childhood. He says, “When they get behind the wheel, if they’ve been watching you use the phone, if they would rather use the phone it’s gonna be hard to break that habit and get them driving safely from the get go.” The insurance company says that more than a third of drivers text while they’re behind the wheel.

Even if you aren’t involved in a distracted-driving accident, you’re going to pay a price for distracted drivers via higher insurance rates, according to an official with the University of South Carolina’s Center for Risk and Uncertainty Management.

Not all accidents caused by distracted driving are even identified as such. Even though law enforcement officers now can look at driver’s phones to determine whether they were talking or texting at the time of the crash, there are numerous other distractions that take drivers’ focus off the road.

If you’re involved in a crash and you believe that the at-fault driver may have been distracted by a phone or other device, your New Jersey attorney can work to ensure that the circumstances that led the driver to be negligent or reckless are properly investigated.

Source: NBC News, “Your Car Insurance Rates Are Going Up Because Everyone Keeps Texting and Driving,” Jo Ling Kent and Chiara Sottile, accessed March 24, 2017

New Jersey residents are just digging themselves out from Winter 2017’s worst storm to date. That means that the highways and streets are being subjected to more harsh salt treatments that melt the ice but contribute to the problem of eroding roads and potholes.

There’s no doubt that when ice and snow build up on the roads, the New Jersey Department of Transportation workers must do what is necessary to make safe passage for motorists, but these measures do play havoc on the highways’ infrastructures. In some cases, the deteriorating roads and highways may even be contributing factors to some serious accidents and injuries for drivers and their passengers.

In some collisions, the at-fault party is easy to identify. Mr. Smith runs a red light and crashes into Mrs. Jones, sending her and her children to the hospital. Clearly, Mr. Smith was in the wrong, and both he and his insurance company are liable for their injuries and damages.

But is it really so clear? Let’s look at it from a different perspective.

Suppose Mr. Smith was driving at a normal rate of speed and came up to the intersection, but the stop light was not working. As luck would have it, a huge mound of snow was piled up there at the corner, obscuring Mr. Smith’s view of Mrs. Jones approaching the intersection from the right. The two cars collide.

All of a sudden, the liability in the accident is quite muddled. The non-working traffic light and the location of the mound of snow where it obstructs drivers’ vision both contributed to the wreck. This potentially opens up the agencies responsible for traffic light maintenance and snow removal to potential liability should Mrs. Jones decide to file a claim against them for her and her children’s injuries.

The DOT website encourages drivers to be proactive by reporting the locations of hazards like broken stop lights and dangerous pot holes that could pose dangers to drivers.

If you were injured in an accident and feel that the road conditions may have contributed to the circumstances, a New Jersey personal injury attorney can help sort out all possible defendants.

Source: State of New Jersey Department of Transportation, “Pothole/Highway Maintenance Reporting,” accessed Feb. 10, 2017

Okay, so you’re probably not going over the river and through the woods, but chances are good that you will be traveling to some destination this Thanksgiving.

According to AAA, they anticipate that nearly 49 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles during the period of the day before the holiday to the Sunday following it. This projected number is an increase of roughly a million more than last year’s total, and the greatest number since 2007.

Nearly 90 percent of that total will be on the highways. The lower gas prices and the improving economy were cited by AAA as the reasons for the uptick in travel numbers for this year.

To assist those who will be on the highways around more than 30 major cities from the Sunday preceding Thanksgiving to the one after it, Google Maps has provided driving recommendations.

The company is using an aggregate of anonymized speed and location data to calculate highway congestion. This data was collected from users’ Android phones when the location services were enabled.

The general advice for all major cities was to head out when possible around noon on Monday or Tuesday for your destination. Expect heavier traffic patterns, but the peaks will generally be at the same time as everyday traffic. Traffic should slack off after 8 p.m.. and also in the early morning hours.

Still, all the extra automobiles on the highways and byways, coupled with drivers who may have indulged in too much turkey and gotten sleepy — or worse, alcohol, and become impaired — creates more potential hazards. If you wind up injured in a Thanksgiving holiday collision, knowing your rights can lead to compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

Source: Boston Globe, “What Google says are the best and worst times to drive during Thanksgiving week,” Matt Rocheleau, Nov. 16, 2016

Driving while impaired is one of the crimes most frequently committed in the United States; it’s estimated that police arrest one driver for every 772 incidents of DWI.

Annually across the nation, police officers arrest 1.5 million intoxicated drivers. Many are repeat offenders responsible for a great deal of the accidents attributed to alcohol use. Every half hour, somewhere in the U.S., a person is killed by a drunk or drugged driver, adding up to almost 50 individuals each day.

Statistics show that the fatality rate is actually rising, with nearly 18,000 killed annually and another 250,000 injured in the U.S.

In 2012 here in New Jersey, 28 percent of deaths in car accidents were related to alcohol use, with 164 deaths. More than 10 million drivers self-reported incidents of impaired driving due to illicit drug usage in one survey of U.S. driving behaviors.

During the same year, 10,322 lives were lost in alcohol-related collisions in America, which accounts for 31 percent of all traffic deaths in the country. That number was up 4.6 percent from the year before when 9,865 died.

Clearly, there is a problem. New Jersey’s Division of Highway Traffic Safety supports the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” initiative to keep drunken drivers off the roads. Sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols are part of the highly visible enforcement strategies police departments are employing in targeted areas.

If you get hurt in a collision with an impaired driver, you don’t have to wait for the adjudication of any criminal charges against the driver before filing civil litigation in the New Jersey courts in order to seek financial remuneration for your injuries, losses and related expenses.

Source: The State of New Jersey, “Talking Points,” accessed Aug. 26, 2016

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