With Florida driver’s reliance on the state’s highways and roads as one of their only options for transportation, these thoroughfares can become danger zones. Not only will you have to deal with traffic and congestion, you also have to worry about the other drivers and their actions. And one of the most dangerous types of drivers are the ones under the influence of alcohol.
Lacking their normal faculties, drunk drivers can create major safety hazards for those around them. As a result, many safe drivers are subject to injury. If the negligent driver injures the victim, they should be held liable for their actions. Florida allows victims to sue for damages when negligence is involved, and with the help of a qualified Fort Lauderdale DUI accident attorney at your side, you can demand compensation.
Driving under the influence is unacceptable in all situations. Holding drunk drivers accountable for their actions, particularly when another is hurt as a result, is a top priority for us. Our Fort Lauderdale auto accident attorney has several years of experience and a track record of success, regarding DUI personal injury cases.
We aggressively pursue the offending party and prove, through a fact-based legal process, that they caused the accident that led to your injuries. We proactively gather evidence, interview witnesses, analyze police report and medical records, and can be counted on to provide a strong voice during litigation. Our legal team also focuses on a straightforward and transparent representation style, keeping you informed and confident during a time that can seem stressful and perplexing.
Working on a contingency basis, we only collect legal fees if you collect on your case. This commitment to a favorable resolution proves that our interest will be directly aligned with yours during this complicated situation. As a Broward County law firm, we proudly represent individuals and families throughout Southeastern Florida, including Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Pembroke Pines, Hollywood, Miramar, Coral Springs, Pompano Beach, and surrounding communities.
Committed to a quick response and timely representation during the litigation process, we will immediately begin working your case following a free initial consultation. To schedule a time to meet with one Fort Lauderdale DUI accident attorneys to go over your case and discuss legal options, please call (954) 256-1820 or send an online message today.
If a DUI allegation is involved in an accident, the offender will also be subject to a criminal charge of DUI with property damage. The legal wording regarding DUI w/ property damage can be found in the Florida Statutes.
According to Fla. Stat. § 316.193, an individual can be charged with this offense if they:
- Operate a vehicle, are driving a vehicle, or are in actual physical control of a vehicle;
- They caused or contributed to causing damage to the property of another person or injury to another person;
- They are under the influence of an alcoholic beverage, chemical substance or controlled substance and their normal facilities are impaired,
- They have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 grams or more of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood, or
- They have a breath alcohol level of .08 or more grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath.
On the civil side, Florida Statutes § 627.737 states that, in any action of tort brought against the owner, operator, or occupant of a motor vehicle, or against any person or organization legally responsible, a plaintiff may recover damages in tort for pain, suffering, mental anguish, and inconvenience because of bodily injury, if the result led to:
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function.
- Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement.
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement.
Four elements must be proven in order to be eligible for compensation in a DUI accident personal injury case. These elements are duty, breach, causation and damages. The plaintiff is required to demonstrate that the offending party failed in their obligation as a driver on Florida roadways in the following ways:
- Duty – The driver of the car or vehicle must have owed you a duty to act with reasonable care when operating their car. This is a duty that all drivers have when they operate a motor vehicle on the roads of Nevada.
- Breach – The driver must have breached his or her duty of care when operating their vehicle.
- Causation – The driver is required to have actually and proximately caused your injuries as a result of breaching their duty of care when operating their vehicle.
- Damages – You must have suffered some form of compensable injury, pain and suffering or financial loss from the driver’s negligence.
The consequences of a DUI accident are widely varied. Sometimes, if the victim is lucky, they will only incur minor injuries. But, for many, serious injuries follow this serious legal infraction. These injuries result in costs, both economic and non-economic. The compensation for these costs are called ‘damages.’ When filing suit against the offending party, your Fort Lauderdale DUI accident attorney will analyze the consequences of the negligent actions and list distinct damages in the litigation. Some of the most common damages cited in Broward County DUI accident lawsuits include:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Medical costs
- Rehabilitation bills
- Loss of income
- Reduced earning capacity
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
While no one ever wants to be involved in a car accident, it’s still important to be prepared in the event one should occur. Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney Lisa Levine recommends keeping these items in your car or in your possession while driving:
– A cell phone with a camera
– Pen and paper
– A medical information card with insurance numbers, allergies and conditions that may require special attention if you are not conscious.
– Emergency contact names and numbers
– A first aid kit
– Small road cones and emergency flares
When you’re in a car accident, the first steps you take are critical in protecting yourself and your legal rights. First, always stop at the scene. If you can, move your vehicle out of traffic, turn on your flashers, and call the police. If you’re able to, document as much of the the scene as possible. Get contact and insurance information from the other driver, and call your insurance company.
Read more about what you should do after a car accident
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by the other driver’s negligent actions, Florida state law gives you the right to seek compensation for the damages resulting from these injuries. However, in some circumstances, it’s possible for both parties to share blame for an accident.
In these situations, judges and juries apply what is known as “comparative negligence” when awarding damages, which means they decide to what percentage each party’s negligence contributed to the accident. Any compensation you are awarded will be reduced by the percentage to which you are found responsible for the accident.
Read more about comparative negligence
Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles – DUI – This link will direct you to the DUI page within the FLHSMV web site. The page offers information on DUI laws, frequently asked questions, commercial DUI’s, insurance laws and violation point values.
Florida DMV – This link sends you to the Florida Drunk Driving page on the Department of Motor Vehicles web site. It contains resources and information on drivers licenses, records, rules, regulations and laws regarding DUI’s and how to deal with a DUI accident.
Broward County Court – Knowing the legal process related to civil and criminal cases is extremely important when approaching a DUI personal injury case. This link sends you to the Broward County Clerk of Courts web site where you can look up procedures, cases, locations, phone numbers and state laws.
Working with a Broward County Drunk Driver Accident Lawyer to Pursue Civil Action
There is no excuse when it comes to drinking and driving. Every person is well aware of the dangers, but some still do not realize the severity of their actions when driving while under the influence. When a drunk driver injures someone, he or she must be held responsible for the damage caused.
We are here to help you get justice. Lisa S. Levine P.A. has the legal knowledge and resources to effectively demand compensation and win your case. Our firms commitment to defending rights, along with our proactive nature, will allow us to seek out evidence of negligence while making certain that you are protected from the formidable legal powers of insurance companies and amoral defense lawyers.
We serve individuals and families throughout Broward County, including Weston, Fort Lauderdale, North Lauderdale, Lauderhill, Margate, Tamarac, Deerfield Beach, Coconut Creek, and nearby communities. Our firm offers free, no-obligation initial consultations for anyone who believes they have a strong personal injury case involving a drunk driver. To set up a time to meet with a DUI accident attorney and discuss the case, along with possible legal options, please call (954) 256-1820 or send an online message today.