According to the most recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2019, 10,142 people died in drunk driving accidents nationwide. That equals about one fatality every 52 minutes. In 2019, Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) says that drunk driving caused 4,984 collisions, 351 of which were fatal.
If you or a loved one was injured in a collision caused by drunk driving, you have legal options. You could recover compensation for your injury-related losses with the help of our legal team.
Drunk Driving Is a Crime in Florida
According to Florida Statutes § 316.193(1)(b), anyone with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of 0.08% or higher is considered to be drunk driving. The following are penalties for this offense:
- First offense. A fine between $500 and $1,000 and less than six months imprisonment.
- Second offense. A fine between $1,000 and $2,000 and less than 9 months imprisonment.
A drunk driver could also face mandatory community service and the suspension of their license, depending on the circumstances of their arrest and conviction.
Will a Drunk Driver Go to Jail If They Hurt You?
Maybe. If the other driver was arrested or issued a citation at the accident scene, they could face jail time. This would have little bearing on your ability to recover compensation. If anything, it could help you establish that a negligent driver hurt you.
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Other Contributing Factors to Car Accidents
When someone drinks and drives, they usually partake in other forms of reckless driving, such as:
- Road rage
- Running stop signs and red lights
- Failing to yield to the right of way
- Braking suddenly
The moment someone acts carelessly on our roadways, they are negligent. If they cause an accident due to this negligence, they can be held financially accountable for victims’ losses.
What to Do If a Drunk Driver Hurt You
Odds are, you are not reading this at the accident scene. If you are dealing with the aftermath of an accident caused by an intoxicated driver, however, here are some things that could help you:
Get Medical Help
Drunk driving accidents can produce serious injuries. You should seek medical care before you write your injuries off as “no big deal.” If you have concerns about the cost of medical care, you could recoup these damages through a claim or lawsuit.
Request a Copy of the Police Report
Florida Statutes § 316.066 says that you have to file a police report following a collision if anyone was hurt, killed, or a car needed to be towed from the accident scene. You also must file a report if the incident involved a commercial driver.
When you request a copy of the police report, check it for any inaccuracies. Check the time, date, and location of the collision. If the report does not mention that you were harmed by a drunk driver, and you know for a fact that the other driver was intoxicated, you can request to have the police report amended to show this information.
Consider Contacting Our Law Firm
Our team understands the consequences that can follow an accident caused by drunk driving. If you work with us, you can expect us to guide your case to completion. We will identify the negligent party, file your insurance claim, and work to get you the compensation you need.
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What Information Can Be Used to Prove Your Case?
When negotiating a settlement, the burden of proof is on you. You must show evidence that reflects the cause of your accident, the cost of your damages, and the extent of your pain and suffering.
Here is some information our team can use to support your claim:
- The police report
- Eyewitness testimony
- Statements from accident reconstruction specialists, healthcare providers, and economists
- Traffic camera footage
- Black box data
- Your personal testimony
- Photos of the accident scene, your car’s damage, and your injuries
You do not need to get this information on your own. You could have a lawyer from our team get these pieces of evidence for you.
For a free legal consultation call (855) 529-0269
Our Firm Works on a Contingency-Fee Basis
You do not have to pay our law firm anything to start building your case. We only get paid for our help if we secure financial recovery for you and your loved ones. If we cannot successfully resolve your case, then you do not pay our attorney’s fees.
We pride ourselves on honest, personalized representation. We believe that paying for a lawyer should be one of the last things on your mind right now.
Call Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers
It does not truly matter how many accidents are caused by drunk driving; what matters is that you were hurt and suffered financial losses.
Our team offers free case reviews to people who want to learn more about their legal rights. You have a limited time to take legal action under Florida Statutes § 95.11, so we encourage you to give us a call today. Dial (855) 529-0269.
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