The criminal justice system does not always dispense justice. A civil lawsuit against a criminal defendant helps get victims of crimes, and their families, answers, and continues the fight against the perpetrator.
Andrew R. Duffy
SM&B is a nationally recognized law firm that represents individuals who have been injured, and whose rights have been violated, due to another’s criminal conduct. The attorneys at SM&B have decades of experience in protecting the rights of crime victims in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and across the United States. We have held criminals responsible for their conduct in hundreds of cases, including those involving:
- Driving Under the Influence: According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, more than 10,000 people die each year in alcohol-impaired driving crashes (which account for about 30% of all traffic-related deaths in the U.S.). Most states, including Pennsylvania and New Jersey, have enacted so-called dram shop laws that prohibit bars and restaurants from serving alcohol to visibly intoxicated patrons. If an overserved individual is involved in a vehicle accident, the establishments that served the alcohol can be held legally responsible for the accident and resulting injuries to the victims.
- Sexual Abuse: Some form of sexual assault happens in the United States every 98 seconds. Cases of sexual assault are often not reported, either because the victim fears that he or she will not be believed, or that reporting will only cause the abuse to become worse. However, there is no excuse, morally or legally, for the sexual abuse that occurs. Victims of sexual assault may suffer physical and psychological injuries, some of which may last a lifetime. Lifetime effects from sexual abuse are particularly prevalent when children are the victims.
- Assault and Battery: Victims of assault and battery are entitled to pursue civil damages against their attacker regardless of whether the perpetrator was criminally prosecuted. Criminal attacks can cause catastrophic personal injuries that may result in permanent impairment or wrongful death. If an assault occurs on commercial property, such as a bar or hotel, then the property owner may also be held liable for the victim’s damages.
SM&B has secured numerous multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for victims of crimes and their families, including:
- $124,260,000 verdict against a former University of Pennsylvania economics professor who pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the death of his wife.
- $75,000,000 verdict for a highway construction worker who was left quadriplegic after he was struck by a drunken driver who became intoxicated at the bar-restaurant he managed.
- $17,000,000 settlement for passengers aboard a duck boat that was run over by a barge on the Delaware River between Philadelphia and Camden, New Jersey. The operator of the tugboat that was pushing the barge plead guilty to involuntary manslaughter.
- $7,000,000 settlement for the family of a 23-year old man beaten to death in the Old City section of Philadelphia. The bars that served the man’s attackers while they were intoxicated paid the settlement. The attackers all plead guilty to criminal charges and were sentenced to prison terms.”
- $17,000,000In 2010, two Hungarian students drowned and twelve others were injured when the Duck Boat on which they were riding was run over by a barge, which ...Read Story
- $7,000,000The estate of a 23-year-old man beaten to death after a night out in the Old City section of Philadelphia has settled for $7 million with the bars ...Read Story
- $20,000,000In the largest settlement to date in a Pennsylvania insurance bad faith case, the Princeton Insurance Co. has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a ...Read Story
SM&B understands the complex legal issues that arise in cases involving victims of crimes. Victims must seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit against not only the perpetrating party, but also against other people, businesses, and other institutions that failed to fulfill their duties and were a cause of the criminal conduct.
SM&B pursues all potential defendants that may be liable in lawsuits that arise from criminal misconduct, including establishments that sell liquor, child care centers, adult day centers, foster care agencies, fraternities, hotels, property owners, property management companies, and employers.
If you have been injured—or a family member has been injured or killed—as a result of another’s criminal conduct, SM&B is committed to obtaining the justice and compensation you deserve.