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Four things to know when you are hit by a drunk driver

On behalf of Soloff & Zervanos, P.C. Posted in Drunk Driving on Tuesday, May 2, 2017.

On your way from a dinner meeting for work, you are slammed into by a drunk driver. You can smell the alcohol coming from the other person’s vehicle. You call 911. Police agree with you about the other driver being intoxicated.

You eventually find out that the person had a blood-alcohol concentration that was well over the legal limit. You had to miss work because of your injuries and you are facing some hefty medical bills. Were can you go from here? Consider these points:

#1: The BAC has an impact on driving abilities

The higher a person’s BAC, the less likely he or she is able to drive safely. A person with a .08 percent BAC might be able to control a vehicle better than a person who has a .15 percent BAC. Still, any BAC over .08 percent for drivers who are at or above the legal drinking age shouldn’t be driving since it is illegal and they do have at least some reduction in driving abilities by that point.

#2: A high BAC isn’t automatically considered fault

A high BAC isn’t automatically considered a reason to prove the drunk driver was at fault for the accident. On the other hand, a low BAC isn’t automatically proof that the other driver wasn’t at fault. The specific circumstances of the case have to be considered in order to determine which driver is at fault. For example, you might share fault if the reason you were hit was partly due to you running through a stop sign.

#3: You can seek compensation

You can opt to seek compensation from a drunk driver who slams into you if he or she was at fault for the accident. The compensation that you seek can include damages for the time you had to miss work. You can also include medical bills. Make sure that you take subrogation into account when you are developing your claim because there is a chance that if insurance paid for your bills, you will have to repay the insurance company if your claim is successful.

#4: You still need to prove liability and negligence

As part of your personal injury lawsuit after a drunk driving accident, you have to prove liability and negligence. You must show that the drunk driver had a duty to drive safely to keep you safe and failed to meet that duty. Of course, you might be able to hold other parties, such as the drunk driver’s insurance company, accountable for the crash. Dram shop laws might even come into the picture.