When you go out for a night on the town, you never expect to wake up the next morning in the hospital. However, this is a possibility with the number of drunk drivers on the roads of College Park and all throughout Georgia.
There’s no telling whether or not you will come into contact with a drunk driver, but if you do, a College Park drunk driving accident lawyer from John Foy & Associates can help you recover compensation for your injuries.
What Are Georgia’s Drunk Driving Laws?
Georgia outlines the laws about drunk driving under Motor Vehicles and Traffic Law §40-6-39. The law states that no one is permitted to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of glue, alcohol, toxic vapors, drugs, or aerosols.
The blood alcohol limit in Georgia is 0.08, which means that a driver is over the legal limit when they blow a 0.08 during a breathalyzer test administered by a police officer. The blood alcohol limit in Georgia for a commercial vehicle is 0.04.
There is a zero-tolerance policy in place for underage drivers in Georgia. If a driver under the age of 21 blows a 0.02 on a breathalyzer test, they are considered over the limit.
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Holding Drunk Drivers Accountable for Their Actions
Our drunk driving accident attorneys in College Park will do everything within the law to hold drunk drivers accountable for their actions. You deserve to be compensated for the injuries caused by a drunk driver. If you are injured in an accident with a drunk driver, you can recover compensatory damages from the driver, including the following:
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Disfigurement or disability
- Medical expenses
You might also be eligible to recover punitive damages following a drunk driving accident. Punitive damages are meant to not only punish the drunk driver for their actions, but also help compensate the victim with additional money so they can pay their medical bills and other expenses while out of work.
In almost all car accident cases, Georgia caps punitive damage compensation at $250,000. However, the state removes that cap on any accident that involves driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The jury is permitted to consider the driver’s record of previous drunk driving cases when determining punitive damage awards in Georgia.
Dram Shop Laws in Georgia
Georgia has dram shop laws in place that permit victims of College Park drunk driving accidents to seek compensation from the establishment that sold or served the alcohol to the driver. In order to hold an establishment liable for a drunk driving accident, the following must be met:
- That the establishment knowingly or willfully sold alcohol to a patron under the age of 21
- The establishment knowingly or willfully sold or served alcohol to a patron who was visibly intoxicated
- The establishment knew that the minor or patron would be driving a vehicle upon leaving the establishment
Steps to Take If You’re Injured in a Drunk Driving Accident
A College Park drunk driving accident lawyer recommends that you take the following steps when injured in a drunk driving accident:
- Remain at the scene of the crash and do not follow the driver if they fail to stop
- Move to a safe area if the vehicle is not totaled and you are not seriously injured
- Try to take pictures of your injuries, the damage to your vehicle, the road conditions, and any other evidence at the scene
- Call 911 so the police respond and a report can be filed
- Let the emergency personnel examine you for injuries
- Go to the hospital, especially if it is recommended by the EMTs
- Follow the doctor’s orders explicitly and do not deviate in the least bit
- Do not speak to an insurance adjuster
- Call John Foy & Associates to speak with a drunk driving accident lawyer in College Park about your case
- Avoid posting on social media about the accident even though you were the victim
- Do not contact the at-fault driver if you have their information
What Is the Georgia Statute of Limitations?
As with all other personal injury cases, the statute of limitations in Georgia is two years from the date of the injury. This means that you run the risk of having the claim dismissed by a judge if you file it two years and one day after you suffered the injury.
There are two main exceptions to the two-year limit: the age of the victim at the time of the crash and if a crime was involved. If you were under the age of 18 when you were injured by a drunk driver, the statute of limitations does not go into effect until your 18th birthday. You then have two years from that date to file a claim.
If a crime was committed that caused the accident, such as vehicle theft, robbery, or abduction of a victim, the statute of limitations can be extended by the court.
Drunk Driving Statistics in the U.S.
Drunk driving is a serious problem throughout the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an average of 28 people are killed each day by drunk drivers. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) reports that two out of every three Americans will be involved in a drunk driving accident in their lifetime.
The next victim of a drunk driver could be you or a loved one. That’s why the College Park drunk driving accident attorneys at John Foy & Associates will aggressively fight to hold drunk drivers accountable for their actions.
Call a College Park Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Today
Being injured in a car accident is stressful. If it was an accident caused by a drunk driver, it can be even more challenging to deal with as the victim. Let the College Park drunk driving accident lawyers from John Foy & Associates fight to protect your rights and help you obtain compensation for your injuries.
Call our office or submit our contact form today to schedule a consultation.