All kinds of negligent driving behaviors can cause serious crashes. Speeding, texting, running a red light—you name it. In some ways, it doesn’t matter what the other driver was doing to cause the accident. If it can be proven that he was at fault in some way, he—and his insurance company—can be held responsible for compensating you for your medical bills and other losses. However, when the at-fault driver was drunk, this could add some additional factors to a personal injury claim that are best handled by a lawyer with experience in these kinds of claims. We take a look at the factors that complicate drunk driving crashes here.
How Drunk Driving Crashes Differ From Other Injury Accidents
If the driver who caused your accident was cited for DUI at the scene of the crash, you might think a negligence claim will be a slam dunk. However, an experienced personal injury attorney will understand that rushing the claim is probably not in your best interest. Here are some reasons our team will take our time to get you the best possible outcome:
- Pending criminal charges. A personal injury claim is a civil matter, but a drunk driving arrest is a criminal charge. If the driver who caused your crash is convicted of DUI, that can strengthen your claim for civil damages. The judge in a DUI case involving an injury might also award punitive damages to the victims. Therefore, it might be in your best interest to wait for the conclusion of the criminal proceeding before filing an injury claim. Our team will time the claim to optimize your compensation.
- Serious injuries. Drivers who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol make the kinds of mistakes that lead to catastrophic crashes, such as driving at very high rates of speed, falling asleep at the wheel, and making aggressive maneuvers. The kinds of injuries sustained in these crashes can be devastating. An experienced attorney knows that it is best to wait until the full value of the claim is clear before sending a demand letter to the insurance company.
- Multiple victims. Catastrophic crashes also often involve multiple cars, and there could be several people seeking compensation from the drunk driver. Insurance policies only provide a certain amount of coverage, so your attorney might have to negotiate for your fair share. You want someone who will be a strong advocate for you.
- Under-insured driver. The majority of people charged with DUI are young men. This demographic is often uninsured or underinsured, meaning you will have a hard time getting adequate compensation. Drivers with multiple DUI convictions may be unable to get insurance at all. An experienced car accident attorney will look to your own uninsured motorist coverage and identify other sources of compensation.
- Massachusetts dram shop laws. In some situations, you might be able to go after the bar or social host that served the drunk driver for damages. These are difficult claims to prove and require a skilled and dedicated attorney to pursue charges and win.
While it may be easy to prove negligence when the driver who caused your accident is charged with drunk driving, it is not easy to get the kind of compensation you need and deserve to cover your damages. An attorney who has successfully pursued these claims in the past will be better prepared to fight for what you deserve than an attorney who has not handled car accident claims involving drunk drivers. Our team will make sure you recover:
- Current and future medical bills
- Lost wages
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Compensation for physical pain and emotional suffering
When alcohol was involved in the crash that left you seriously injured, count on the team from Mahaney & Pappas to fight for you.
We Proudly Represent Victims of Drunk Drivers. Contact Our Framingham Attorneys Today.
Our personal injury lawyers can help you deal with insurance companies, coordinate payments of medical bills, and pursue the best maximum financial settlement possible. This gives drunk driving accident victims peace of mind and the ability to focus on healing. Contact our experienced Massachusetts car accident attorneys today for a consultation regarding your claim.