Of all the irresponsible actions a driver can take while in charge of a car, drunk driving is perhaps the most serious. Despite awareness of how devastating and selfish the action can be, research shows that around 11,000 Americans are killed each year by motorists under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
What If I Am Involved in a Drunk Driver Accident?
If you are involved in an accident with a drunk driver, it is crucial that you take steps at the scene to help ensure that you protect your legal rights and increase your chances of a successful compensation claim. There are several boxes you need to tick to protect yourself, including:
- Call the police: this needs to be the first thing you do. Make sure you tell them that you suspect the other driver was under the influence of drugs alcohol while driving, and that this caused the collision. This point will be confirmed by the police using a breathalyzer and sobriety test.
- Record all your conversations with the drunk driver—make sure you tell them that you are doing so to ensure that the evidence can be used. You may capture crucial evidence such as slurred speech, aggressive or inappropriate behavior, slow and poor response to questions, staggering and swaying, and other clear signs of intoxication.
- Do not allow the driver to destroy or touch any evidence before the police arrive, such as empty cans or bottles.
- Gather as many witness statements as possible at the scene to strengthen your case.
As we have discussed, proving that a drunk driver was at fault can be boosted and increased by gathering evidence. You may find, however, that the insurance company is not keen to play ball, and they may try to coerce you into accepting a low settlement offer or deny any claims for personal injury altogether.
They may try to claim that you are at fault in an attempt to limit your compensation or avoid paying out altogether, and this can be devastating if you require medical treatment or another financial reward.
Drunk Driver Accident Lawyer: What Can I Claim?
If you can prove that your injuries were directly caused by the negligence and carelessness of the other motorist, you may be able to claim for personal injury compensation. To do so, you will need to prove that a traffic law was violated and that these actions endangered the lives of others. You may be able to claim for any lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and any other costs which are incurred as a direct result of the car accident.
It is a good idea to get in touch with one of drunk driver accident lawyers. We will be able to advise you of the next steps and help guide you through the process and steps you need to take to secure the right outcome and the compensation you need to cover your medical expenses and financial losses.