The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data shows that in 2019, drunk driving accidents caused the death of 10,142 people in the United States, which averages out to about one death every 52 minutes. Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) reported that in 2019, drunk driving resulted in 4,984 collisions in Florida, 351 of which led to fatalities.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a crash caused by someone driving under the influence, there are legal options available. Our legal team can assist you in pursuing compensation for losses related to the injury.
Drunk Driving Is a Crime in Florida
Florida law states that having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of 0.08% or higher qualifies as drunk driving under § 316.193(1)(b) of the Florida Statutes. If found guilty, there will be penalties for this offense.
- First offense. A fine between $500 and $1,000 and less than six months imprisonment.
- Second offense. A fine between $1,000 and $2,000 and less than 9 months imprisonment.
There could also be community service requirements along with license suspension, depending on the situation surrounding their arrest and conviction.
Will a Drunk Driver Go to Jail If They Hurt You?
It is possible that if the other driver was arrested or received a citation at the accident scene, they could be sentenced to jail time. However, this does not affect your ability to receive compensation. In fact, it may support your argument that the other driver’s negligence caused your injuries.
Other Contributing Factors to Car Accidents
People who drink and drive often engage in other types of dangerous driving, for example:
- Road rage
- Running stop signs and red lights
- Failing to yield to the right of way
- Braking suddenly
If someone acts carelessly while driving, they are considered negligent. If their negligence causes an accident, they may be held responsible for compensating the victims for their losses.
What to Do If a Drunk Driver Hurt You
Assuming you are not currently at an accident scene, the following information may be useful to you if you have been involved in an accident caused by a driver who was under the influence of alcohol.
Get Medical Help
It’s important to get medical attention after a drunk driving accident, even if your injuries don’t seem significant. You could file a claim or lawsuit to cover the cost of medical expenses if you’re worried about the financial burden. Remember that these types of accidents can cause severe injuries, not all injuries are immediately apparent which is why it is crucial you seek medical attention regardless of how you feel at the time.
Request a Copy of the Police Report
According to Florida Statutes § 316.066, you must report a collision to the police if someone was injured, killed, or if a car required towing from the scene. Additionally, you are required to file a report if the accident involved a commercial driver.
When you ask for a copy of the police report, make sure to review it closely. Look at the details of the collision such as the time, date, and location to ensure accuracy. If you were harmed by a drunk driver but the report does not mention it, you may ask the police to amend the report with this information.
Consider Contacting FGB Law Firm
If you have been in an accident caused by someone driving under the influence, our team is here to help. We will handle your case from start to finish and work to get you the compensation you deserve. This includes identifying the at-fault party, filing an insurance claim, and taking necessary legal action.
What Information Can Be Used to Prove Your Case?
When you are trying to negotiate a settlement, the burden of proof is on you to provide evidence that proves why the accident occurred, how much your damages cost, and the level of your pain and suffering.
To support your claim, our team can use the following information:
- The police report
- Eyewitness testimony
- Statements from accident reconstruction specialists, healthcare providers, and economists
- Traffic camera footage
- Black box data
- Your personal testimony
- Photos of the accident scene, your car’s damage, and your injuries
Our team of lawyers can assist you in obtaining these pieces of evidence instead of you doing it independently.
Call The Experienced Personal Injury Lawyers At FGB Law Firm Today
We provide free case evaluations to individuals who wish to gain insights into their legal entitlements. According to Florida Statutes § 95.11, there is a time limit for initiating legal proceedings. Therefore, we recommend that you contact us today by dialing 941-979-9010 or filling out our online contact form.