Georgia has a drunk driving problem. DUIs are responsible for a third of car accident fatalities and have caused the deaths of 3700 people over a 10-year period. Alpharetta is no exception. Drunk driving can lead to devastating injuries needing months or even years of costly medical care. If you or a close family member has been hit by a drunk driver, you have the right to recover the cost of your medical care, car repairs and even lost time from work, but you need to talk to an Alpharetta drunk driving accident attorney as soon as possible.
John Foy & Associates is ready to help. Our law firm is built around helping accident victims get the money they need to get treatment and remain financially stable. We only work for victims, never insurance companies. Our only goal is to get you the money you’re legally entitled to. Let us sit down with you, for free, to discuss your case. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
What counts as DUI in Alpharetta?
In the City of Alpharetta, like all of Georgia, DUI doesn’t just mean driving while drunk. It means driving while impaired by any substance that might affect your driving. We have seen DUI cases involving these substances:
- Prescription medications
- Over the counter drugs that cause drowsiness
- Illegal drugs, including marijuana, crack and cocaine
Usually, we use chemical tests administered by law enforcement officers to show that a driver was under the influence. For example, blood and breath tests may show that a driver’s blood alcohol content exceeded the legal limit of .08%. Or, blood or urine tests may show that a driver had another drug in his or her system. But sometimes, drivers are convicted of DUI when there are no chemical test results at all.
How can I protect my rights if a drunk driver hits me in Alpharetta?
Before you think about protecting your rights, make sure you get the emergency medical care you need. Then, if you can, we suggest you do the following things to document what happened and begin gathering evidence:
- Call the police. Get the police to the scene, even if the other driver objects, and even if you don’t think anyone was seriously injured. The police will prepare an accident report which will provide an unbiased view of what happened and will be an important piece of evidence in any claim you file.
- Tell the police the other driver is impaired. In a perfect world, the officer will notice the other driver’s impairment, administer tests, and arrest the driver right away. But to make sure the officer doesn’t miss any telltale signs, calmly say that you believe the other driver is impaired, and explain why.
- Make a video recording of your conversation with the other driver. Impaired drivers often look, sound and act drunk or drugged. When you record this behavior, you create valuable evidence that will show a jury just what you saw. Recordings can be far more persuasive than the usual “he said/he said” testimony.
- Talk to any witnesses. Often, people at the scene have observed the impaired driver’s behavior before or after the accident, even if they didn’t see the accident itself. Find out if anyone saw the accident or the other driver’s behavior, and get their names and contact information.
As soon as possible after the accident, schedule an appointment with a drunk driving accident lawyer. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and what your claim is truly worth. And the sooner a lawyer begins working on your case, the sooner you can get the money you need to pay for treatment.
What can I win in a DUI claim in Alpharetta?
Georgia’s laws give you the right to recover the entire cost of your injuries resulting from a DUI accident. This includes:
- Doctor, hospital, prescription and other medical costs
- Lost wages—work days missed because of your accident
- Car repair or replacement costs
- Large amounts of money for pain, suffering, wrongful death or long-term disabilities
If an impaired driver caused your accident, the driver may also have to pay you “punitive damages.” Punitive damages aren’t related to the costs you’ve had, they are meant to punish the drunk driver for choosing to break the law and put people at risk. Punitive damages can mean substantially more money for you, but they also send a clear message that Georgia will hold drunk drivers fully accountable for their behavior.
Punitive damages can greatly increase the value of a DUI accident claim. We’ve handled many claims that are worth $100,000 and up.
Can I still recover money if I was in the drunk driver’s car?
Yes, you are still entitled to ALL your costs and damages. However, your claim may be a bit more complicated because the local courts may view it differently than a claim by someone traveling in another car. For instance, if you knew your driver was drunk, the local courts may not want to award you as much money, or might not want to give you punitive damages. We recommend that you consult a personal injury lawyer right away to develop a strategy that will get you as full a recovery as possible.
Is there a deadline to file a DUI accident claim in Alpharetta?
Usually, you have two years to file an accident claim in Georgia, but some types of claims have a much shorter deadline—possibly only a period of weeks. The important thing to know about these deadlines (known legally as “statutes of limitations”) is that they are very strict. If you don’t file your claim before the deadline expires, you lose your right to recover money for your injuries.
A personal injury lawyer can explain the deadline that applies in your case and help you get your claim filed before time runs out.
Talk to an Alpharetta Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer for Free
At John Foy & Associates, we don’t believe you should pay for someone else’s poor choices. Over the past 20 years, we’ve helped many drunk driving accident victims get the money they need to rebuild their lives. We’d like to help you too, starting with a free consultation to go over your case and explain your options. Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.