When you think about drunk-driving, and an accident that has been caused by a drunken driver, you may immediately place the blame in the lap of the driver. After all, it was their decision to consume alcohol before getting behind the wheel of a car and, as such, it is their fault entirely that you, or another, have sustained serious injuries as a result. While you are struggling to come to terms with what has happened, and perhaps also in a lot of pain due to your injuries, filing for compensation may be the last thing on your mind. However, as a Philadelphia drunk driving accident attorney will tell you, you deserve to be compensated for the pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages you have incurred due to the actions of a drunk driver. Your attorney may also find that a third party, other than the driver themselves, played a part in causing the collision.
If you believe that the drunk driver involved in your Philadelphia accident was solely responsible for the incident, you may well be correct. However, did you know that the establishment who sold them the alcohol can also be partly to blame in some situations? If a bar or restaurant in Pennsylvania sells alcohol to a customer they know is already intoxicated, they could be held partially liable, thanks to a little-known aspect of Pennsylvania law known as dramshop liability. This could mean that you are entitled to compensation you were not aware of.
In some very specific circumstances, a social host providing alcohol may also be held partly liable. As this area of the law is complex, particularly when the partial liabilities are brought into the equation, you will need the legal expertise of a Philadelphia drunk driving accident attorney to ensure you receive all the compensation you deserve.
It may seem obvious, but a person will never come out better than a motor vehicle when the two collide. One is made of flesh and bone, the other is made of several tons of reinforced metal. Add to that the fact that the car or truck is being driven carelessly by a person whose judgement is impaired by alcohol and you have a surefire recipe for disaster. Drunk driving accidents can leave victims forced to live with lifelong catastrophic injuries, such as:
In the worst-case scenarios, a Philadelphia drunk driving accident can even result in a wrongful death.
When we turn to data available from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, we can see that drunk driving crashes remain a top safety issue across the Commonwealth. During the latest reporting year, there were 9,380 total alcohol-related collisions. Out of these incidents, there were 299 fatalities and 5,938 injuries. Drunk driving crashes were responsible for more than 28% of all fatal collisions during that year. Those that do survive a drunk driving collision regularly sustain severe injuries because the incidents often occur at high speeds and before any party involved has had a chance to slow down.
Drunk driving accident victims have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit against the alleged negligent party in their case. The Pennsylvania personal injury statute of limitations is two years from the date an injury occurs. This gives Philadelphia drunk driving accident victims a two-year window with which to file a lawsuit against the alleged negligent party. Failing to file a lawsuit in this statutory time frame will result in the victim being unable to recover any compensation for their losses.
By working with a skilled Philadelphia drunk driving accident lawyer, you can be sure that you have an advocate on your side who will be aware of any deadlines pertaining to your case. Please keep in mind that the personal injury statute of limitations in PA has nothing to do with the requirements put in place by individual insurance carriers. In general, all vehicle accidents need to be reported to the insurance carrier within a day or two after the collision occurs.
There will be various types of evidence needed in the aftermath of a Philadelphia drunk driving accident collision in order to prove liability. Often, the evidence used in a personal injury case involving a drunk driver will coincide with the evidence used against the drunk driver in a criminal case. This can include field sobriety tests, the results of a blood alcohol content test, as well as statements from the arresting police officer. Additionally, a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will help uncover the following evidence in order to prove liability:
An attorney will gather all the relevant evidence as well as the medical bills, proof of lost income, proof of out-of-pocket expenses, and more to help build their case against the alleged drunk driver. The goal is to secure full compensation for the victim in the case, including:
If you have sustained injuries in a drunk driving-related accident, resulting in medical expenses and loss of wages, you could be entitled to recover damages. An experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer can navigate the complexities of the legal system on your behalf, ensuring you recover the maximum compensation applicable to your case.
To schedule your free initial consultation with a Philadelphia drunk driving accident attorney, call us today on 215-987-3730.