Tuesday, May 15, 2018

How Does a Personal Injury Case Work in Morris County, NJ?


HURT IN A MORRIS COUNTY CAR ACCIDENT IN NJ-WHAT NOW?

For those injured in a car accident in New Jersey, it is important to consult with a New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney as soon as possible.  Most NJ personal injury lawyers will provide a free initial consultation and work on a contingency fee basis so there is really no downside to consulting with one.  It will give you an opportunity to review your rights and responsibilities.

THE ACCIDENT SCENE

As soon as an auto accident occurs, word of the accident spreads pretty quickly.  Generally, the police find out immediately as someone calls them from the scene.  Later, a police report is generated and made available to the public.  If there are injuries reported to the police at the scene, the police will call an ambulance to take those injured to the hospital unless they refuse treatment.  Those requiring an ambulance and a hospital visit often forget that auto insurance is the primary insurer in NJ for the medical bills incurred from the accident unless health insurance was previously chosen as primary on the insurance application.

INJURED IN A MORRIS COUNTY, NJ ACCIDENT

For those that elect to obtain the services of a personal injury attorney in NJ, the lawyer and the client will enter into a retainer agreement.  The attorney will usually work on a contingency fee basis under the retainer agreement.  This means that the client pays nothing up front.  The lawyer will take his or her fee at the end of the case out of any recovery.

LIMITATION ON LAWSUIT THRESHOLD

Most New Jersey residents have a limitation on lawsuit threshold on their auto insurance policy.  A limitation on lawsuit threshold prevents those injured in a car accident from filing a lawsuit against the party that caused it unless they fall into one of six exceptions:
  1. Death
  2. Dismemberment
  3. Significant Disfigurement or Scarring
  4. Displaced fracture
  5. Loss of a Fetus
  6. Permanent Injury (an injury to a body part that has not and will not healed to function normally)

THE PERSONAL INJURY LAWSUIT

After signing up with a NJ Personal Injury Attorney, the lawyer will have to collect the client’s medical records and review the law to determine whether there is a case.  This is based upon the lawyer’s opinion and many times lawyers disagree.  Assuming there is a case, the lawyer will file a Complaint on behalf of the client.  It is then incumbent upon the defendant to file an Answer.  The discovery period begins as well.  Discovery is the period in which the plaintiff and the defendant exchange information.  In a car accident case, this generally involves exchanging medical records, answering written questions, answering oral questions at a deposition and undergoing medical examinations.  The discovery period can take over a year to complete.

ARBITRATION

Once discovery is over, the matter will go to arbitration.  Arbitration is like a mini-trial before an arbitrator.  An arbitrator is an experienced lawyer in the community with no connection to the case who is selected at random to review it.  Witnesses can testify before the arbitrator.  Medical records are reviewed by the arbitrator.  A decision will then be made by the arbitrator as to how much the case is worth.

THE TRIAL

Arbitration in non-binding and, therefore, either party can reject the arbitrator’s decision.  If either party rejects the arbitrator’s decision, the matter will be listed for trial.  Most trials for car accident cases are over within a week.  At trial, witnesses such as the plaintiff, the defendant, the medical doctors, witnesses of the accident, experts, etc…are called to testify.  The lawyers for the plaintiff and the defendant will give opening and closing statements as well.  Following the closing statements, the jury will then decide the issues.  In a car accident case, the issues generally pertain to who was at fault for the accident, whether the plaintiff’s injures met the limitation on lawsuit threshold and how much to award in compensation.

So, when does the car accident case settle?

A car accident case can settle at any moment during this entire process.  There are many, many factors that go into when and whether the case settles.  Unfortunately, it varies on a case-by-case basis.  Sometimes, it doesn’t settle and a trial is necessary.

If you have been injured in a NJ car accident, it is a good idea to discuss the matter with a NJ Personal Injury Lawyer.  The Sloan Law Firm handles auto accident cases in Parsippany, Mount Olive, Randolph, Rockaway, Roxbury, Montville, Morristown, Florham Park, Chatham, Long Hill, Boonton, Hanover, Long Hill and throughout Morris County, New Jersey and can be reached at (908) 358-2938 to discuss any matter. 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Points Schedule


NJSA point schedule
NJSA
Section
Offense
New Jersey Turnpike, Garden State Parkway and Atlantic City Expressway
27:23-29Moving against traffic2
27:23-29Improper passing4
27:23-29Unlawful use of median strip2
All roads and highways
39:3-20Operating constructor vehicle in excess of 45 mph3
39:4-14.3Operating motorized bicycle on a restricted highway2
39:4-14.3dMore than one person on a motorized bicycle2
39:4-35Failure to yield to pedestrian in crosswalk2
39:4-36Failure to yield to pedestrian in crosswalk; passing a vehicle yielding to pedestrian in crosswalk2
39:4- 41Driving through safety zone2
39:4-52Racing on highway5
39:4-55Improper action or omission on grades and curves2
39:4-57Failure to observe direction of officer2
39:4-66Failure to stop vehicle before crossing sidewalk2
39:4-66.1Failure to yield to pedestrians or vehicles while entering or leaving highway2
39:4-66.2Driving on public or private property to avoid a traffic sign or signal2
39:4-71Operating a motor vehicle on a sidewalk2
39:4-80Failure to obey direction of officer2
39:4-81Failure to observe traffic signals* (Red Light Camera- 0 pts.)2
*No points assessed for red light camera violation0
39:4-82Failure to keep right2
39:4-82.1Improper operating of vehicle on divided highway or divider2
39:4-83Failure to keep right at intersection2
39:4-84Failure to pass to right of vehicle proceeding in opposite direction5
39:4-85Improper passing on right or off roadway4
39:4-85.1Wrong way on a one-way street2
39:4-86Improper passing in no passing zone4
39:4-87Failure to yield to overtaking vehicle2
39:4-88Failure to observe traffic lanes2
39:4-89Tailgating5
39:4-90Failure to yield at intersection2
39:4-90.1Failure to use proper entrances to limited access highways2
39:4-91
39:4-92
Failure to yield to emergency vehicles2
39:4-96Reckless driving5
39:4-97Careless driving2
39:4-97aDestruction of agricultural or recreational property2
39:4-97.1Slow speed blocking traffic2
39:4-97.2Driving in an unsafe manner (points only for third or subsequent offense within five years of most recent 39:4-97.2 conviction)4
39:4-98Exceeding maximum speed 1-14 mph over limit2
Exceeding maximum speed 15-29 mph over limit4
Exceeding maximum speed 30 mph or more over limit5
39:4-105Failure to stop for traffic light2
39:4-115Improper turn at traffic light3
39:4-119Failure to stop at flashing red signal2
39:4-122Failure to stop for police whistle2
39:4-123Improper right or left turn3
39:4-124Improper turn from approved turning course3
39:4-125Improper u-turn3
39:4-126Failure to give proper signal2
39:4-127Improper backing or turning in street2
39:4-127.1Improper crossing of railroad grade crossing2
39:4-127.2Improper crossing of bridge2
39:4-128Improper crossing of railroad grade crossing by certain vehicles2
39:4-128.1Improper passing of school bus5
39:4-128.4Improper passing of frozen dessert truck4
39:4-129Leaving the scene of an accident -
no personal injury
2
Personal injury8
39:4-144Failure to observe stop or yield signs2
39:5C-1Racing on highway5
39:5D-4Moving violation committed out-of-state2



The Sloan Law Firm serves clients in traffic ticket matters in Parsippany, Mount Olive, Randolph, Rockaway, Roxbury, Montville, Morristown, Florham Park, Chatham, Long Hill, Boonton, Hanover, Long Hill, Chester and throughout Morris County, New Jersey.  If you have been charged with a traffic infraction, the Sloan Law Firm may be able to get the amount of motor vehicle points reduced or eliminated altogether.  For a free initial consultation, call (908) 358-2938.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Morris County NJ DUI Law


DUI IN MORRIS COUNTY, NEW JERSEY


In Morris County and throughout New Jersey, drunk-driving is taken very seriously.  Anyone driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher is guilty of driving under the influence (DUI)/driving while intoxicated (DWI).  However, a driver whom the police believe is impaired by alcohol can also be found guilty of DWI / DUI.  Police officers are trained to detect driver impairment as a result of alcohol and a person can be convicted based upon an officer’s observations alone. 

DUI PENALTIES IN NEW JERSEY


The penalties for driving while intoxicated/driving under the influence are severe.   Those convicted of drunk driving face stiff fines and surcharges, loss of driving privileges and possibly incarceration.  Subsequent DWI / DUI convictions may result in even higher fines and mandatory jail. 

FIRST OFFENSE – DUI


Blood Alcohol Level (BAC) of .08%-.09%

Imprisonment: Up to 30 days

License suspension: 90 Days

Fines: $250 – $400 plus fees

Surcharge: $1,000 a year for 3 years

Intoxicated Drivers Resource Center (IDRC): 12 – 48 hours

BAC of .10% or more

Imprisonment: Up to 30 days

License suspension: 7 months to 1 year

Fines: $300 – $500 plus fees

Surcharge: $1,000 a year for 3 years

IDRC: 12 – 48 hours

Interlock: 6 months to 1 year for BAC .15 or more

SECOND OFFENSE – DUI


Imprisonment: at least 48 hours and up to 90 days

License Suspension: 2 years

Fines: $500 – $1,000 plus fees

Surcharge: $1,000 a year for 3 years

Interlock: 1 – 3 years

Community Service: 30 days

IDRC: 12-48 hours

THIRD OFFENSE – DUI


Imprisonment: 180 days mandatory

License Suspension: 10 years

Fines: $1,000 plus fees

Surcharge: $1,500 a year for 3 years

Interlock: 1 – 3 years

IDRC: 12-48 hours

DEFENDING DUI CASES


No Basis for the Stop


The police cannot pull individuals over for no reason.  The police officer must have an articulable and reasonable suspicion that the driver has committed a motor vehicle violation.  If there is no reason for the motor vehicle stop, all evidence collected thereafter is impermissible.  The Sloan Law Firm collects the dashcam video and all audio available of the motor vehicle stop to ensure that the police had a valid basis for the motor vehicle stop.  If not, the Sloan Law Firm can file a motion to dismiss the case on behalf of the client.

Lack of Evidence Demonstrating Intoxication


Police officers use a breathalyzer machine to test for intoxication. The breathalyzer is known as the Alcotest.  The Alcotest examines the driver’s BAC at the police station.  Anyone driving with a BAC of .08% or higher is guilty of driving under the influence.   The Sloan Law Firm examines whether the police officers followed protocol in administering the test. If not, a motion to dismiss the case can be filed to dismiss the case on behalf of the client. 

If you have been charged with DUI in Parsippany, Mount Olive, Randolph, Rockaway, Roxbury, Montville, Morristown, Florham Park, Chatham, Long Hill, Boonton, Hanover, Long Hill, Chester or any other town in Morris County, it is a good idea to consult with a Morris County NJ DUI Lawyer.  Attorney Daniel Sloan is a criminal defense attorney.  The Sloan Law Firm handles DWI cases throughout Morris County, NJ and offers free initial consultations - (908) 358-2938.


Saturday, May 5, 2018

Morris County NJ Marijuana Possesion Law


IS MARIJUANA POSSESSION IN MORRIS COUNTY, NJ STILL A CRIME?


In Morris County, NJ, possession of any amount of marijuana without a valid prescription is a crime even if you have no amount of marijuana in your system.  It is very common for those arrested for marijuana possession to have their matter heard in municipal court.   This is because marijuana possession less than 50 grams is a disorderly persons offense.  Many times, those arrested for marijuana possession are also charged with possession of drug paraphernalia as well because the police find the marijuana in a grinder or other paraphernalia.  Drug paraphernalia is also handled in municipal court because it is a disorderly persons offense.

WHAT ARE THE PENALTIES FOR MARIJUANA POSSESSION IN MORRIS COUNTY, NEW JERSEY?


Marijuana possession less than 50 grams is a disorderly person offense and is punishable up to a maximum of 6 months in jail, hefty fines and driver’s license suspension. A conviction for possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana can result in up to 18 months in jail and $25,000 in fines.  Possession of drug paraphernalia has the same penalties. 

WHY DO I HAVE TWO TICKETS FOR MARIJUANA POSSESSION?


Those arrested for drug possession are frequently arrested while in their car.  As a result, the police will typically issue a traffic ticket for marijuana in the vehicle in addition to the separate offenses of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

If you have been charged with marijuana possession in any Morris County town, including Parsippany, Mount Olive, Randolph, Rockaway, Roxbury, Montville, Morristown, Florham Park, Chatham, Long Hill, Boonton, Hanover, Long Hill, Chester, it is a good idea to consult with a Morris County NJ Marijuana Possession Lawyer.  The Sloan Law Firm handles these types of cases throughout Morris County, NJ and offers free initial consultations - (908) 358-2938.

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