Even if you exercise caution and pay close attention while you are behind the wheel, there are some unfortunate circumstances in which you cannot avoid falling victim to a drunk driver’s recklessness. Although drunk drivers face severe criminal penalties and fines for their acts, they may also be liable in a civil lawsuit for the injuries and costs that result from the collision. The civil lawsuit is a separate proceeding from the criminal case. Car accident lawyer Adam Baron has helped many victims in Naples and other South Florida cities bring a claim and seek the compensation that they need to get back on their feet.Pursuing Damages from a Drunk Driver
Recovering compensation after a car accident usually begins with showing that the other driver acted negligently. The legal doctrine of negligence examines whether the defendant’s actions and behavior comported with what a reasonably prudent person would do in a similar circumstance. In a drunk driving accident, since the driver has violated many applicable traffic laws and regulations by operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, a plaintiff likely can establish that the defendant breached his or her duty to drive with ordinary care and skill. In other words, a reasonably prudent driver would not get behind the wheel while intoxicated beyond the legal limit.
After establishing duty and breach, the plaintiff must also prove that the defendant’s breach of the standard of care was the direct cause of his or her injuries. A defendant might argue that some other factor or condition present at the time of the crash was the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries—not the defendant’s intoxication. An accident reconstructionist may be a critical component of a car crash case, since the expert can explain to the jury how the defendant’s intoxication was the direct cause of the collision and the plaintiff’s injuries.
Finally, a victim must provide evidence substantiating the claims to damages that he or she has made in the lawsuit. Some common categories of damages include medical bills, physical therapy costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. Florida also recognizes the right of a spouse to file a loss of consortium claim seeking compensation from the defendant for the loss of his or her injured spouse’s society, comfort, love, and companionship. If the victim loses his or her life as a result of the crash, the surviving family members can bring a wrongful death claim against the defendant driver, seeking compensation for the loss of their loved one in addition to compensation for funeral and burial expenses.Consult a Knowledgeable Lawyer in Naples after a DUI Accident
If you or someone you love has been hurt as the result of a drunk driver’s careless behavior, you may be able to pursue compensation. I am Adam Baron, an injury attorney who has provided compassionate yet aggressive legal representation to Naples residents and other individuals in cities such as Coral Springs, Miami, Tamarac, and North Miami Beach. I offer a free consultation to help you understand your rights and options, so you have nothing to lose. Contact us online or call us at one of our regional office locations to set up your appointment. We can be reached in Broward County at (954)-247-4878, in Miami-Dade at (305) 770-2131, or in Naples/Fort Myers at (239) 352-5511.