If you were in a car accident where the other driver was drunk or driving under the influence, it is important that you consult with a skilled attorney who can assist you with your case. Lawsuits involving a drunk driver or an individual driving under the influence, have two primary differences than a normal car accident case. First, these cases almost always involve a criminal case with the offending driver. Second, these cases provide the opportunity to pursue punitive (punishment) damages.
In accidents caused by a drunk driver or driver under the influence, criminal charges will usually be brought by the state. In the prosecution of these criminal cases, admissions may be made, testimony given and plea deals agreed to. Under certain circumstances, the evidence obtained and admissions made in a criminal case may be used in your favor in your injury case.
There will routinely be opposition from the offending driver’s attorney to prevent you from advancing your injury case while the criminal case is pending. The other side will argue that any evidence obtained in the civil case may negatively affect the criminal case. However, waiting to advance your injury case puts you at a disadvantage. Memories fade, witnesses move and evidence is lost. As a result, it is important that you have an attorney that has experience handling these cases and defeating the other side’s efforts to stop the injury case while the criminal case is pending. Our attorneys have experience in this area and we have consistently defeated efforts to stop the injury cases of our clients.
Cases involving drunk drivers and drivers under the influence may also provide the opportunity to pursue punitive damages. Punitive damages are a form of damages that the court may award a victim to punish the other side for his or her reckless or intentional conduct. In other words, the court may award you money to punish the other driver for driving drunk or under the influence. This is in addition to the money that you may be entitled to for your injury, medical expenses, lost income and pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one was involved in a car accident caused by a drunk driver or driver under the influence, contact the Piccuta Law Group, LLP today. Our attorneys have experience handling cases involving drunk drivers and drivers under the influence. One of our attorneys will provide you with a free consultation and discuss your case at no-cost.