DUI Car Accidents Can Lead to Civil Lawsuits
A man has been arrested after causing a fiery crash while drinking and driving that resulted in the death of five people last month. Tanner Dashner, age 21, is facing five counts of DUI manslaughter. The Florida Highway Patrol reports that Dashner was driving in White City when he struck the rear end of a Dodge Dakota while traveling at a high speed. The Dakota burst into flames and killed all five people inside.
We all know that drinking and driving don’t mix. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles report that there were 6,588 accidents in 2017 in which the driver of the vehicle was under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Out of those accidents, there were 661 fatalities.
What makes drinking and driving even more terrible is that these accidents and related injuries and deaths are entirely preventable. If you are one of the people that is injured in an accident caused by an impaired driver that has been drinking, you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you understand what your rights are and ensure they are protected.
If You Are in an Accident with an Impaired Driver
Any type of car accident can be daunting, especially if it is one that is caused by a drunk driver. If you are in one of these accidents, there are certain steps that you should take.
- Notify law enforcement officials immediately and obtain a copy of the accident report.
- Seek medical treatment even if you don’t feel like your injuries are severe. It can sometimes take hours or even days for you to feel your injuries.
- Take photos of the scene of the accident as well as your injuries.
- Document any medical care that you receive as well as the expenses, time missed from work, and travel.
Understanding Civil and Criminal Lawsuits from Drunk Driving Accidents
When a drunk driving accident occurs, most people immediately think of criminal charges relating to the drunk driving crime. However, civil lawsuits can occur from these accidents too. In a criminal case, the state will file a lawsuit against the defendant to seek legal punishment for the criminal behavior. This punishment may include fines and jail time.
In a criminal case, the victims of the accident won’t likely receive monetary compensation for their injuries. That is where a civil lawsuit comes in to play. If you and your attorney can prove that the defendant’s actions resulted in your injuries, the defendant will be ordered to compensate you for your damages, not through jail time like in a criminal case, but through monetary compensation.
Why You Need a Drunk Driving Accident Attorney
Civil claims stemming from drunk driving accidents can be complex and stressful. That’s where an experienced car accident attorney can help. The Florida attorneys at Leifer Law Firm will review your situation and determine what your legal rights are and then help you ensure that those rights are protected and that you get the compensation you are entitled to. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.