Drivers assume a certain level of responsibility every single time they get behind the wheel. They are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that ensures not only their safety but also the safety of other individuals on the road. When someone is negligent of their responsibilities, this can lead to a serious accident. One of the worst levels of negligent driving is that of drunk driving. If you’ve been injured in a car accident due to a drunk driver, you may be entitled to financial compensation.
What Do I Do if I am Hit by a Drunk Driver?
There are a few key steps you should take if you find yourself in an accident resulting from the negligence of another driver, especially if that person is driving drunk. The first thing is ensuring you are safe and that any present injuries or developing injuries are addressed. In many car accident scenarios, adrenaline can offset any feelings of pain due to injury. Injuries such as internal bleeding, concussions, or other serious concerns may also take time to present themselves. Therefore, you need to assess your injuries and seek medical care as soon as possible.
If you can, you’ll also want to gather any possible evidence and information. This includes taking pictures and video of the scene and contacting emergency responders. Any information that can be gathered initially can be beneficial later as you build your case. Once you are medically clear, you’ll want to speak with a personal injury lawyer to allow them to start working on your case immediately.
Drunk Driving in Georgia
We are taught in our earliest days of driver’s safety to never get behind the wheel of a vehicle when impaired. Unfortunately, some drivers don’t take this seriously, often finding excuses as to why they are okay to drive. When pursuing an injury claim due to a DUI accident, there has to be evidence that the driver was under the influence of alcohol. This evidence can include:
- A blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher
- Refusing a BAC test or refusing to provide a blood or urine sample
- A driver under 21 with a BAC of .02 or higher
- A driver with a professional or commercial license and a BAC of .04 or higher when operating a vehicle
When pursuing a DUI injury claim, evidence from police reports and lab results may be used to help establish that a DUI was committed and that compensation is due to the accident victim.
How Do I Know I Qualify?
Certain requirements are factored into whether a person can seek victim compensation, such as:
- Whether there were serious injuries or death
- If the victim had no fault in the accident
- If the police were notified within 72 hours
- Whether the victim has pursued compensation through auto and health insurance
- If the claim is filed no later than one year following the incident, unless an adequate reason for the delay can be given
Why Seek Compensation?
In Georgia, there is no limit to the damages that can be awarded for pain and suffering. In many car accident situations, physical and emotional recovery is a long-term process that involves substantial financial costs. Georgia also allows for the recovery of punitive damages in drunk driving cases. This offers financial support to accident survivors or their families that can provide a better cushion than simply covering medical bills or lost wages. When you are suffering from preventable injuries, you shouldn’t have to carry that financial burden. If you are injured due to the negligence of another driver, you deserve any compensation possible.
Drunk driving accidents can be severe and often require long-term healing, both physically and mentally. The professionals at Lamar Law Office, LLC can help. Contact us to learn more about your legal rights.