Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer in Dade City
Driving under the influence of alcohol is an incredibly dangerous and reckless thing to do. Alcohol can severely limit brain function, impair coordination, and reduce reaction time, all of which are crucial to safe driving. The more alcohol a person consumes, the worse the cognitive effects become.
At The Disability Law Firm, our legal team has more than 50 years of experience helping people injured by drunk drivers seek justice and fair compensation for the harm they have suffered. You should not have to shoulder the burden of costly medical bills, lost wages, repairs to your vehicle, and other losses because someone else made a poor decision. Let us fight for you and help make things right.
If you were injured in a collision with an intoxicated driver in Dade City, contact us by phone or online for a free consultation right away.
Consequences of Drunk Driving in Dade City
Even small amounts of alcohol consumption can seriously impair driving abilities and result in serious car accidents such as:
- Rear-end collisions – Drunk drivers have difficulty with depth perception and reaction time, making it hard to determine when to slow or stop and increasing the risk of rear-end crashes that cause serious injuries.
- T-bone accidents – Drunk drivers frequently blow past red lights and stop signs, causing devastating T-bone collisions with other motorists exercising their legal right of way.
- Sideswipe crashes – Drivers with a high blood alcohol level are more likely to get distracted or drowsy and drift into neighboring lanes, colliding with other vehicles in sideswipe wrecks.
- Head-on collisions – In especially tragic cases, drunk drivers may drift into oncoming traffic or go the wrong way and cause fatal drunk driving accidents.
Drunk Driving Accident Statistics
The following drunk driving statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) illustrate the dangers of drinking and driving:
- Throughout the U.S., roughly 28 people per day – or one person every 52 minutes – are killed in drunk driving accidents.
- Drunk driving accident deaths recently reached their lowest percentage since the NHTSA began keeping track, but there were still 10,142 fatal drunk driving accident victims that year.
- That same year, another 1,775 people died in alcohol-related crashes involving drivers with blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) below the legal limit.
Common Types of Injuries from Drunk Driving Accidents in Dade City
Drunk driving accidents can result in significant injuries with life-changing and sometimes fatal complications, such as:
- Head wounds and traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries and partial or total paralysis
- Dislocated or broken bones
- Soft tissue strains, sprains, and tears
- Abdominal injuries and internal bleeding
- Traumatic or surgical amputations
- Burns, scarring, and permanent disfigurement
- Facial injuries and dental trauma
- Post-traumatic stress disorder and emotional injuries
- Wrongful death
I Am the Victim of a DUI Accident. What Do I Do?
If you were injured in a drunk driving crash in Dade City or surrounding areas of Florida, you should take the following steps to safeguard your legal rights and get a head start on your potential personal injury lawsuit:
- Seek prompt medical attention to determine the extent of your injuries, receive the treatment you need, and create a formal medical record of your condition.
- Follow through on your doctor’s treatment recommendations and attend follow-up appointments to demonstrate that you are taking your health seriously.
- Gather evidence such as information from the other driver, photos, and statements from eyewitnesses at the accident scene.
- Document your physical pain and limitations in a daily journal
- Hang on to medical bills and other documentation of your accident-related expenses.
- Avoid sharing information about the accident on social media
- Decline to provide written or recorded statements to insurance companies.
- Contact a trusted drunk driving injury lawyer for professional legal advice.
Suing for Damages After a DUI Accident in Dade City
If you want to sue a drunk driver for compensation after a Dade City DUI accident, you may be limited by Florida’s “no-fault” car insurance system. In no-fault systems, drivers are expected to rely on their own auto insurance policies for compensation after a car accident, regardless of who was at fault. Compensation from no-fault PIP claims is typically limited and does not cover pain and suffering or other non-economic losses.
However, you could be entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault drunk driver if you sustained a “serious injury.” Under Florida law, a serious injury is defined as one that results in permanent injury, permanent loss of bodily functions, substantial scarring or disfigurement, or death.
If you sustained qualifying injuries, you could recover compensation for medical expenses, future medical costs, pain and suffering, and all other types of personal and financial losses by filing a third-party insurance claim or injury lawsuit against the other driver. In some drunk driving lawsuits, punitive damages may also be available.
Florida’s Statute of Limitations for Car Crash Cases
Florida’s statute of limitations limits the amount of time you have to file a DUI accident lawsuit in civil court. If you choose to file a civil lawsuit against the other driver, you have just four years from the date of the accident to do so. If you wait to file your lawsuit until after the statute of limitations has expired, the court will dismiss your case unless a very narrow exception applies.
What Happens If the Drunk Driver Is Acquitted or Never Charged?
If the driver who caused the DUI accident never faces a criminal charge or conviction for their behavior, where does that leave your civil lawsuit? It may be frustrating to see the drunk driver acquitted or never charged, but fortunately, that does not mean your drunk driving accident claim will necessarily fail in civil court.
That is because DUI charges are a criminal matter, while your injury claim is a civil one. The two cases and the two systems are separate. The civil court uses a lower burden of proof, which means a driver could be found civilly liable for a DUI accident but acquitted on criminal charges.
A DUI charge or conviction will not make or break your civil case. A drunk driving accident attorney can help you compile strong supporting proof for your claim so you can secure the compensation you deserve, regardless of the drunk driver’s criminal case.
Contact Our Experienced Dade City Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Today
When people choose to drive drunk, they put themselves and others on the road at risk. Do not try to take on the insurance company alone without help from an experienced personal injury lawyer. If a drunk driver injured you, let a DUI accident lawyer from The Disability Law Firm help you hold them accountable. We will never charge a fee for our consultations. When you hire us, you will not pay us anything in legal fees unless and until we win your case.
Call us, chat with us live, or fill out a contact form to speak with a member of our team now and receive a free case evaluation.