It may seem insulting, but if you’re involved in a drunk driving accident, you still need to prove fault. You may be wondering how anyone could possibly blame you when the defendant was driving under the influence. What our Miami car accident attorneys have learned over the years is that you always need to submit additional evidence to prove your case.
It Would Seem Obvious Who Was at Fault in a Drunk Driving Accident
Sometimes, it’s not just a matter of proving fault when it comes to your drunk driving accident case. Yes, your drunk driving accident lawyer in Miami will still need to prove negligence.
However, even if they do that easily, they still need to prove your damages. This means they’ll need a copy of your medical records. They’ll also need to know how much time you missed from work. Depending on the seriousness of your injuries, you may be entitled to significant compensation.
Your Miami Accident Attorney Still Has to Prove Negligence
Before you can collect damages, your Miami accident attorney will need to prove negligence. Submitting a copy of the defendant’s DUI conviction will go a long way toward doing this.
At the same time, you need to assume that the court will demand additional proof. To prove negligence, your Miami accident attorney will need to demonstrate the following four (4) things:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care.
- They breached this duty.
- You were injured.
- Your injuries were caused by the defendant’s breach of duty.
If the defendant was convicted of DUI, it shouldn’t be all that hard to prove these elements. They clearly owe you a duty of care. All drivers owe other motorists a certain duty of care.
It’s also clear that they breached that duty. By deciding to get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol, they breached their duty of care. Now, it will just be a matter of proving that you were injured.
How Can Your Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer in Miami Do This?
One way for your drunk driving accident lawyer in Miami to prove negligence is by submitting a copy of the police report. This report will include statements made by both drivers. It will also include statements made by any eyewitnesses.
In addition to witness statements, there will be a notation that the cops arrested the other driver for DUI. This, in itself, will go a long way toward proving negligence.
Can You Submit Proof of the Defendant’s DUI Conviction?
There are some judges who don’t think it’s fair to admit proof of the defendant’s DUI. However, more often than not, the court will allow this type of evidence. Since it is proof that the other driver broke the law, it would be hard for the judge to exclude it.
Your Miami accident attorney will try to submit a copy of the conviction. However, expect the defendant’s lawyer to oppose it being admitted into evidence. They will argue that it is too prejudicial against their client.
The way your attorney sees it, it’s only prejudicial because it’s true. If they didn’t want it used against them in court, they shouldn’t have been drinking and driving.
What Damages Can Your Miami Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Demand?
As indicated above, if you are hurt in a drunk driving accident, you will likely be entitled to damages. In most of the cases our drunk driving lawyers in Miami handle, our clients are entitled to some or all of the following:
- Medical Bills and Future Medical Bills
- Lost Wages and Lost Future Income
- Property Damage
- Pain and Suffering
The amount you’ll receive will depend on the seriousness of your injuries. For example, if you suffer a traumatic brain injury, you will have tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills. You’ll also miss quite some time from work.
If you are no longer able to do the same kind of work you did prior to the crash, you can also demand lost future income. Your Miami accident attorney will demand compensation for the difference between what you would’ve earned prior to the crash and what you’ll actually earn now.
There’s a Good Chance Your Miami Accident Attorney Will Settle Your Case
Keep in mind – regardless of how much you demand in damages, there’s a good chance your attorney will settle your case. Our drunk driving lawyers in Miami have years’ worth of experience dealing with insurance adjusters.
We’ll work hard to negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf. If the defendant’s lawyer refuses to settle, then we’ll have no choice but to take your case to trial. If this is the case, your Miami accident attorney may demand punitive damages. While there’s no guarantee the judge will grant them, this is the sort of case where they are warranted.
Contact Our Car Accident Lawyers in Miami Right Away
If you were involved in a drunk driving accident, you probably suffered life-threatening injuries. The last thing you’ll want to do is fight with the insurance companies. That’s why we recommend that you call an experienced Miami accident attorney right away.
You only have a certain amount of time to file your insurance claim. The same is true for your legal claim. If you end up needing to file suit against the other driver, you’ll have to do so before the statute of limitations period expires.
The good news is that our drunk driving accident lawyers in Miami have handled plenty of cases like yours before. We know how to deal with the insurance adjusters. We also know how to use the defendant’s DUI conviction to the best advantage.
Contact us today so you can schedule your free, initial consultation.