Drunk driving is a major cause of car accidents in Florida. Even though it is illegal to drive in Florida with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or above, many people in the state do drive while drunk. In fact, Florida has a higher rate of deaths caused by drunk drivers than the rate in the U.S. as a whole.
Every year in Florida, drunk drivers cause approximately 5,000 crashes, almost 3,000 injuries and 400 deaths, according to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. On top of that, an additional 300 injuries and 380 fatalities are caused each year in Florida by drivers who are impaired by both alcohol and drugs at the same time.
If you were seriously injured in a crash involving a drunk driver, you and your family may be wondering if you should sue the drunk driver for damages. You could be suffering from multiple injuries, require extensive treatment and be unable to work, so pursuing compensation for your injuries would be in your best interest. So too is getting advice and legal help from an experienced Florida car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
In this blog post, we’ll examine the reasons you should pursue compensation for the damages you suffered because of your car accident, as well as how an experienced Florida car crash lawyer can help you get the substantial compensation you deserve.
How Much Compensation Can I Receive by Suing a Drunk Driver in Florida?
The primary reason for suing a drunk driver is to hold them accountable for their negligence and to get the full, fair financial compensation you deserve for all the damages their negligence caused. The exact amount of money you are likely to receive as a settlement or jury award in a case against a drunk driver depends on many factors, including:
- how seriously you were injured
- how much and what kind of medical treatment you need
- how long you are expected to need care
- how much income you lost and are expected to lose in the future
- how much pain and suffering you experience
- other expenses and losses that may be compensated under Florida law
Every case is different; however, the amount you receive could be substantial. The Dennis Hernandez car accident lawyers have, in fact, recovered millions of dollars for clients injured in accidents caused by drunk drivers. The amount you receive could include compensation for both economic and non-economic damages, including:
- Medical expenses, including hospital stays, rehabilitation, medical procedures, medications, office visits, transportation to medical appointments, assistive devices and medical equipment
- Income lost due to not being able to work or work in the same capacity as before the accident
- Diminished earning capacity in the future
- Physical pain and suffering
- Scarring, disability, disfigurement
- Mental anguish, depression and anxiety
- Diminished capacity to enjoy life
- Your family’s loss of your companionship, guidance and assistance
- Other damages recoverable under Florida law
Can I Receive Punitive Damages If I Was Seriously Injured in a Drunk Driving Accident?
The compensation you receive when suing a drunk driver for damages may be more than you would receive if the driver had not been drunk. This is because cases involving drunk drivers may be eligible for punitive damages, which are meant to punish people who cause injury while disregarding or being indifferent to their victims’ safety and lives. They are also meant to serve as a deterrent to others.
In most car accident cases, you can’t seek punitive damages, but Florida law specifically allows people to seek punitive damages in cases that involve drivers who were under the influence of alcohol. Punitive damages can be substantial and are in addition to the compensation that you may receive for your injury-related expenses and losses.
Not every case against a drunk driver will result in punitive damages, but just the fact that the possibility exists may raise the amount of compensation you receive. That’s because a drunk driver’s insurance company may make a higher settlement offer to avoid taking a chance on what would happen if the case proceeded to the punitive damages phase.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Sue a Drunk Driver in Florida?
You are not required to have a lawyer to bring a claim for damages against a drunk driver in Florida. However, an experienced Florida car accident lawyer will understand the law and legal processes and have the skill and resources needed to investigate the accident, prove negligence and convincingly demonstrate your need for substantial compensation.
In addition, experienced Florida car crash lawyers are skilled negotiators and litigators who will not be accept low settlement offers from insurance company representatives or stop fighting for justice when the going gets tough.
What Can an Experienced Florida Car Accident Lawyer Do to Help If You Were Injured by a Drunk Driver?
For the reasons mentioned above, it’s usually worth suing a drunk driver in Florida if you were seriously injured in an accident that the drunk driver caused or even partially caused. Also, if a family member was killed in an accident with a drunk driver, pursuing a a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver to seek compensation for your loss of your loved one may be in your best interest.
The experienced Dennis Hernandez car accident lawyers would be honored to help you get the maximum compensation available.
As your lawyers, we will:
- Support you through every stage of the legal process.
- Investigate the accident and gather evidence showing that the other driver’s impairment was the partial or whole cause of the accident.
- Negotiate aggressively with the drunk driver’s insurance company.
- Build a compelling case showing the full extent of your current and future need for medical treatment.
- Show how much you have lost in income because of your injuries and how much you are expected to lose in the future.
- Show the extent of your emotional and mental distress and other results of the accident, such as scarring or disability.
- Be well prepared to take the fight to court if necessary to get you a fair award.
We never back down and we never give up!
Call us at 855-529-3366, or fill out the FREE CASE EVALUATION form on this page to get started on your case.