FAQs: Drunk Driver Accident Texas

Q: What should I do if I'm involved in a car accident with a drunk driver?

A: It is imperative that you document the accident and contact the police so that a police report will be on file. Contacting your insurance agent or company as soon as possible after the accident will also help in the documenting of the accident. For the police report and insurance company you will need to remember as many details as possible. This can be challenging if you are injured, but it must be done if you are physically able. Pictures and witnesses of the accident, your injuries, and the effects of those injuries will all become part of the insurance claim and will be important if you pursue a personal injury case against the other driver. As soon as you are able, after your initial conversation with your insurance agent, you should contact an experienced attorney to discuss the accident details and your case.

Q: If I was a passenger in a car driven by a drunk driver and I was injured when he crashed into a fence, can I sue him?

A: Yes, you can claim negligence against the driver because s/he had a standard of reasonable care in driving that was not met. . No matter how little or greatly intoxicated the driver was, it was their negligence of making the decision to drive impaired that caused the accident and you can bring a lawsuit for the injuries resulting from the accident against that driver.

Q: I was partly at fault for my car accident, but the other driver was legally intoxicated. What happens now?

A: “Comparative negligence” would probably apply in this situation as it does in most states. This applies, when more than one person is found legally responsible for a car accident and is assigned respective degrees of fault. If you are deemed 20% responsible, any compensation you receive will be reduced by 20%, so as an example, $100,000 award would be $80,000.

Q: Do the same rules for drunk driving apply if the driver that caused the accident was under the influence of an illegal drug?

A: Basically, "driving while intoxicated" (DWI) and "driving under the influence" (DUI) refer to any drug whether prescribed, illegal, or alcohol. So then, DWI and DUI account for a driver that is operating any motor vehicle under the influence of an illegal drug, such as marijuana or cocaine, or even a prescription drug.

Q: Can I claim more compensation if I was injured in an accident caused by a drunk driver as opposed to an unimpaired driver?

A: Each case is different, but probably not. If your case went to trial, a jury may have more sympathy for the victim of a drunk driver, but your economic damages would be about the same as any other type of accident you could’ve been in. The damages would include medical expenses, loss of income, loss of earning capacity, and loss of other retirement or benefits in addition to pain and suffering.

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