According to a Colorado state study on drunk driving, about 60 percent of individuals are arrested daily for drunk driving. Unfortunately, most drunk drivers avoid arrest and cause severe injuries to motorists and pedestrians.
Drunk drivers who have caused car accidents face criminal charges and lawsuits for the injuries caused. Here is how you can sue a drunk driver for car accidents and damages caused.
Determine State DUI Laws
Depending on the state, drunk drivers can be sued or not depending on the intoxication level. To some, a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08 percent can be illegal to drive, while to others driving at 0.15 percent BAC is still okay.
Understand that some states don’t treat drunk driving as a misdemeanor. Only frequent offenders face charges. In case you are not compensated for your scenario, you should be covered by the drunk driver’s insurance policy.
Have Reliable Evidence
Acquiring proof of accident and the driver under influence liability is the first action to take. Evidence provided should show clearly that the driver’s negligent actions led to the accident. Also, ensure proof of alerting the authorities in the occurrence of the accident.
The proof can be in form of a recorded conversation, pictures, or video clip. These are the tools your DUI accident lawyer will use when handling the case.
Compensation Rate and Preferences
The compensation plan for DUI accidents amounts range between $10,000 and $50,000 depending on the extent of damage caused. The attorney will advise on the average amount to expect upon settlement depending on the extent of the accident whether it resulted in death, injuries, or property damage.
Drunk Driver’s Insurance Policy
The DUI driver insurance policy is supposed to cover any medical bills and damages incurred. According to the Washington state code on drunk driving accidents, the insurance policy covers up to $50,000.
Sometimes insurance companies delay compensation or decline to cover the victims. In such instances, you need a lawyer to pursue the company to cover for the accident and damages caused.
Outside Settling or Court Trial
Settling accident claims outside the court should be less time-consuming and less expensive. However, if the driver or their insurance company fails to cover the accident and damages caused, you can place a lawsuit. In such cases, the insurance company should cover the accident and damages.
Facing a jury to present your grievances should be the last resort. Costs associated with filing lawsuits are relatively high. Similarly, much time is spent in the courtroom. Hiring an attorney to advise and handle the case is preferable.
What if I live in a ‘No-Fault’ state?
In ‘No-fault’ states, DUI cases are handled differently. Regardless of who caused the accident. Your car insurance ought to pay for some or all of the medical bills, damages, and any lost earnings. Using the evidence, you need to raise a claim with PIP (Personal Injury Protection). Such claims are mandatory in these states although you can buy an additional PIP-type cover.
In ‘No fault’ cover, you are not compensated for pain and suffering, your automobile insurer takes care of out-of-pocket damages, lost earnings, and medical bills.
However. You can opt to file a liability claim or a personal injury lawsuit against the driver at fault under medical bills. Each state has a specific medical bill threshold that you can’t exceed. For instance, some states may prohibit you from making a personal injury claim unless you have a broken bone or the bill exceeds 3,000 dollars.
Whether in a ‘No-fault’ state or not, you need an accident lawyer to help navigate the claim process. They will also ease inconveniences especially if you were hurt.
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