After a drunk driving accident, you can file a claim to hold the drunk driver responsible for all your damages. This can include damage to your vehicle, medical expenses, and lost wages. If you are suffering from injuries that lead to physical and financial hardship, contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Do not let yourself get cheated by the defense or the insurance companies. A drunk driving car accident lawyer can carefully calculate the value of your losses and help you recover a fair settlement that accurately reflects what you’ve gone through.
Always Hold Drunk Drivers Accountable for Their Actions
Thousands of people die from drunk driving accidents each year, and many more get injured. The unfortunate truth is that the drunk driver causing the accident often gets out unscathed. The innocent victims are usually the ones to get killed or suffer severe damages.
Everyone knows that drunk driving is negligent and illegal. Still, that doesn’t stop people from getting behind the wheel after drinking. If you or a loved one suffered through a drunk driving accident, don’t hesitate to get financial compensation for all the damages you incurred. You should never have to pay for any damages caused by the actions of an irresponsible driver.
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Damages You Can Pursue After a Drunk Driving Accident
While there is no average settlement for drunk driving accidents, there are a variety of damages you can recover compensation for. The following includes examples of some of the more common types of damages victims include in their claims.
Hospitalization and emergency room visits can cost a fortune. Many Americans cannot afford exorbitant medical bills even if they have a good health or auto insurance policy. You should not have to face mounting debt because you sought medical care for your injuries.
When you pursue a settlement, you can get your medical expenses covered by the drunk driver responsible.
Vehicle Repairs and Replacement
Vehicle repairs are also not cheap. Many people need their car to perform essential functions like grocery shopping or to commute to work. Being without a car can be a huge detriment. If your vehicle was damaged in any way, you can hold the at-fault party liable to pay for any repairs or a replacement if necessary.
Injuries from a car accident can leave you in no condition to do work properly. If your injuries keep you from earning money or put you out of a job, you can seek compensation for whatever wages you did not earn.
Non-Economic Damages Are Possible
There are also non-economic damages recognized by law. Pain and suffering are non-economic damages, meaning that there is no cap on how much you can recover for it. A lawyer will need to help you accurately assess how much your pain and suffering are worth.
Other non-economic damages include:
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
- Mental anguish
You Can Also Get Awarded Exemplary Damages
The Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) § 51-12-5.1 describes exemplary damages and how they apply to specific personal injury cases. You can only get awarded for exemplary damages if your case shows that the at-fault party intentionally caused the accident or was grossly negligent in their actions.
This statute acts as a punishment for those that were extraordinarily irresponsible or malicious when they caused their accident. Drunk driving almost always gets classified as a grossly negligent action. The maximum amount of exemplary damages awarded is $250,000, although there are some cases where there are no caps.
Comparative Negligence in Drunk Driving Accidents
Your personal injury claim after a drunk driving accident is subject to comparative negligence rules in Georgia. This means that you cannot file a claim to pursue compensation for an accident when you are over 50% responsible for it occurring.
While the law is on your side when the person who caused your accident is drunk, remember that there is a chance that a judge can hold you partially responsible for the accident. Whatever percentage you get found liable for gets deducted from your final settlement amount if this happens.
The Statute of Limitations for Filing a Drunk Driving Claim
OCGA § 9-3-33 states that you have two years to file a claim after a drunk driving accident. Do not procrastinate and file your claim soon after your accident. It is essential to get your claim rolling so that our team can quickly obtain your compensation.
Often, insurance companies will settle out of court. However, there is a chance that your claim can escalate, and you will need to fight your claim before a judge and jury. This can take a long time and leave you waiting on a settlement while your damages continue to hurt your financial well-being. To avoid this, consult with one of our lawyers and act fast to win your settlement.
Can I Sue Before the Criminal Case Is Over?
If the drunk driver was arrested for drunk driving, it’s a sure bet they will have a criminal case as well. Your lawsuit and the criminal case will happen in two separate courts, and there’s no reason to wait to start your claim before the criminal case is over.
It also doesn’t affect your case if they’re declared not guilty. The standard of evidence is different in civil and criminal cases. What may not be enough for a criminal conviction may be enough to prove liability and get you compensation.
Our Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Can Help You
Our drunk driving accident lawyers are more than ready to help you fight for a fair settlement from the insurance company. Remember, insurance companies are businesses foremost. Their interests are only in saving money and getting away with paying you only the bare minimum for your claim.
Hiring a lawyer can allow you to fight hard for the settlement you rightfully deserve. In many drunk driving cases, simply hiring a lawyer is more than enough to get you through the negotiations process. The best part is that you never have to pay upfront for any of our legal services. We only get paid if we win you compensation. If we can’t, you owe us nothing.
Contact Our Law Firm Today
With over 20 years of experience, John Foy & Associates has helped recover over $1 billion in settlements and verdicts. Our drunk driving accident lawyers have years of experience with helping victims get justice and the settlements they deserve.
Contact us for a free consultation by phone or online. There is no risk. Our team is standing by, ready to assist you. We are available 24/7.