Drunk Driving Accidents
Car Crash Lawyer Assisting Victims in Los Angeles
Drunk drivers have slower reaction times and poorer judgment than sober drivers do. The injuries that arise out of a drunk driving accident tend to be severe and may sometimes be catastrophic or fatal. After a collision, you may need to take time off work and seek significant medical care. Bringing a personal injury lawsuit with the assistance of a car accident attorney may be the only way to obtain the compensation that you need. If you were injured by a DUI driver, Los Angeles drunk driving accident attorney Devin Sawdayi can help you assert your legal rights.
Seeking Compensation for Injuries Sustained in a Drunk Driving Accident
Victims of drunk driving accidents may ask for restitution in a criminal case or pursue damages in a civil lawsuit. Restitution is money that the court orders a criminal defendant to pay as part of his or her sentence. In some situations, victims pursue a civil case if they do not receive the full scope of restitution that they requested in the criminal case. A criminal conviction can help your case, but you can pursue a civil lawsuit for damages even if the criminal case is dismissed. While a criminal drunk driving charge must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt, the more relaxed evidentiary standard of preponderance of the evidence applies to civil cases.
Usually, you need to establish a drunk driver’s negligence to recover damages after a car accident. You will need to prove duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. The police report, lab tests, and other evidence related to the driver’s intoxication may be used to prove breach of duty. In some cases, the doctrine of negligence per se will apply. Under this doctrine, a violation of a safety law that causes an injury of a type the law was intended to prevent is negligence as a matter of law. This means the primary issue of the lawsuit will probably be establishing damages, rather than proving liability.
If you establish liability, you can potentially recover both compensatory and punitive damages from a drunk driver. Compensatory damages may be both economic and noneconomic losses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, loss of enjoyment, mental anguish, and pain and suffering. Other damages may be available for eligible family members if the drunk driving accident resulted in a wrongful death.
Punitive damages, also known as exemplary damages, are damages intended to punish the defendant and deter future similar conduct. While punitive damages are not usually available in car accident cases, they may be available in DUI accident cases because of the egregiousness of drunk driving.
Moreover, anyone who sells alcohol to an obviously intoxicated minor may be held liable in a lawsuit. Adults who knowingly provide alcoholic beverages to people under age 21 also may be held liable for injuries caused to or by a drunk driving minor.
Retain a Los Angeles Attorney for a Drunk Driving Accident Case
Drunk driving accidents may be devastating. It is important to seek legal counsel afterward. While the criminal case is separate from the civil case, certain aspects of a DUI case could affect the civil case. Devin Sawdayi is a trustworthy Los Angeles drunk driving accident lawyer who can work to pursue the greatest possible compensation for your injuries. Contact Mr. Sawdayi at 310-475-9399 or via our online form to set up an appointment with an injury attorney.
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