Accidents in Florida that involve drunk drivers can be tragic. According to the Florida DMV, there are nearly 1,000 fatal accidents every year as a result of drunk driving. Victims are injured or killed, vehicles are damaged, and lives are changed forever. The injuries suffered by victims can can range from broken bones and torn muscles to severe spinal damage, brain injuries, and even death. The costs that victims have to bear from an accident that was not their fault can be tremendous. From medical bills to car repair bills, victims are often left to deal with the overwhelming costs on top of dealing with their painful injuries. Those involved should not have to pay these costs and with the right personal injury attorney, they do not have to.
Who is Liable?
A person who decides to get into a vehicle after having a few drinks and causes an accident is the one who should have to pay the costs incurred by the victim. A responsible party is liable to pay the victim for permanent disability expenses, medical bills, loss of wages and out of pocket expenses.
People often have the misconception that the responsible party’s insurance company will pay for all of the costs incurred by the victim. While insurance companies do provide compensation for accidents, they may offer unfair settlements that do not cover all costs. It is important to remember that Florida law allows a victim to recover punitive damages from a person guilty of drunk driving in certain cases..
There are other parties who may be responsible for causing such an accident. For example, drivers who are intoxicated may have been served alcohol by someone who disregarded the law. It is illegal to serve alcohol to a minor or to continuously serve someone who is already intoxicated. Bar owners or party hosts are often found guilty in these situations, and they may be liable to victims for the losses suffered.
Rebuilding Your Life After an Accident
As an injured victim, your life can change dramatically after an accident. You may not be able to work or even do the simple tasks you are used to doing. Families who have lost a loved one obviously pay the highest price imaginable. The time that it takes to get your life back to the way it was may be a few weeks or it can be a number of years. Some people’s lives may never be the same again.
Local residents should know that there are also a number of support groups that you can join for help after these accidents, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and Witness Justice. Another organization, Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD), will hold its national conference in Orlando, Florida this year in June to help younger individuals say no to drinking and driving.
On top of that, understanding your legal rights is essential to rebuilding your life and easing the burden you now face. It is only by demanding accountability and seeking redress that we can prevent such tragic accidents in the future.
Ask A Lawyer
Victim of a drunk driver? Call the attorneys that can help. 954-961-5100 Broward 877-961-5100 Florida.