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The Legal Implications of Drunk Driving
Even though it is against the law to drive while under the influence of alcohol in Florida, many drivers still do. In most cases, drunk driving leads to an accident, resulting in devastating injuries and deaths to innocent people and their families. Because drunk driving crashes can be physically, financially, and emotionally taxing, it is immensely important to ensure that you know your rights after being a victim of a drunk driver.
If you were hurt by the poor choices of a drunk driver, don’t hesitate to discuss your case with our Tampa personal injury lawyer to learn how we can hold the drunk driver legally accountable for their negligent actions and pursue maximum compensation for your injuries and associated losses.
Your Legal Rights as a Victim of a Drunk Driving Accident
People who have been injured in a crash because of a drunk driver have the legal right to pursue compensation from the driver by filing a personal injury lawsuit against them. This means they can recover compensation for damages, such as medical expenses, lost income, damaged property, emotional distress, and pain and suffering, among others. Aside from these economic and noneconomic damages, you can also pursue punitive damages, which are meant to penalize the drunk driver for their reckless and willful behavior.
This is crucial since the law only allows the recovery of punitive damages in certain cases. Drunk driving accidents are one of those cases, and they can significantly increase the amount of compensation you can recover from the negligent driver. While the law limits the amount of punitive damages at $500,000 or thrice the amount of compensatory damages, whichever’s higher, it does not have a cap on the amount of punitive damages a drunk driving accident victim can pursue.
You should also know that in Florida, depending on the specific circumstances of the drunk driving crash, injured victims can hold a business that served alcohol to the drunk driver liable for the losses incurred in the drunk driving crash. This means that you can also file a claim against that business, which can provide you with more sources of compensation and a higher amount of compensation.
In addition, take note that a personal injury lawsuit is a civil case that’s separate from the case that the state will pursue against the drunk driver, which is a criminal matter. You do not need to wait for the state to file charges against the drunk driver or wait for the outcome of the criminal case to file your claim. It also does not matter whether or not the drunk driver ultimately gets charged with DUI.
Get Legal Guidance From Our Seasoned Tampa Personal Injury Lawyers Today
At Mickey Keenan, PA, our Tampa personal injury lawyers routinely handle various types of motor vehicle accident cases, including complex cases that intersect with the criminal justice system, such as drunk driving accidents. Our Tampa personal injury lawyer can explain what you deserve and how you can secure compensation after a drunk driving crash. Send us an online message or call 813-871-1300 to schedule your consultation with our Tampa personal injury lawyer.