It’s that time of year again when holiday parties are in full swing. People are tired of being cooped up because of the pandemic and they are ready to celebrate. Unfortunately, some people get behind the wheel and think they are capable of driving. This is a disaster waiting to happen.
In case you are injured by one of these drunk drivers, we have handled many car accident cases involving them and we can help you receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal in every state and cause thousands of fatalities and traumatic injuries each year. Drunk driving charges are typically brought in criminal court; however, a person facing criminal charges for driving under the influence can be sued for damages in a civil court as well. Civil courts have the ability to award compensation to victims and may also award punitive damages to punish drunk drivers who have injured or killed someone due to their negligence or recklessness.
Compensatory damages compensate an injured person for accident-related expenses such as medical bills, lost wages, and other damages such as pain and suffering or loss of enjoyment of life. Punitive damages are not intended to compensate the victim, but are instead designed to punish the defendant for his flagrant conduct and to deter others from committing the same type of wrongdoing. Most motorists know that drunk driving puts their lives at risk, so seeking punitive damages may be a possibility if you are involved in an accident with a drunk driver.
However, just because the drunk driver was under the influence, the injured person is not automatically entitled to punitive damages. Plaintiff must produce clear and convincing evidence of outrageous, reckless, or malicious behavior. This might include prior DUI convictions or charges, other drug or alcohol-related offenses, etc. This is just one reason why it is essential to hire an experienced car accident attorney who will investigate the facts of your case and determine whether or not seeking punitive damages is appropriate.
Contact An Attorney To Protect Your Rights
Hiring a skilled car accident lawyer who understands the complexities surrounding punitive damages can help to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. If you have been injured or have lost a loved one in an accident with a drunk driver, contact our office and schedule a free consultation today.