If you suffered injuries or losses related to a drunk driving accident in which the other driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you likely feel overwhelmed as you attempt to deal with your injuries, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and attempting to negotiate with insurance companies regarding settlement offers.
In many cases involving drivers operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they also include criminal charges. If you suffered injuries or losses as a result of a drunk driver, learn how a Washington DC drunk driving accident lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC may be able to help you pursue compensation. Call 800-959-1444 to speak with a member of our team today.
Washington DC Laws
There are several different laws in Washington DC that relate to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The distinctions between these laws can affect the type of claim you may have the legal right to bring under the law as a victim of a drunk driving accident. Learn more about these laws and how they may impact your drunk driving accident case.
Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
According to the Washington DC Metropolitan Police Department, there is a clear distinction between driving while intoxicated (DWI) and driving under the influence (DUI). A DWI occurs when a person has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level above 0.08%. In cases of DWI, a person can receive a conviction based on a breathalyzer, blood, or urine test.
Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
A DUI occurs when a person has a BAC level of 0.07% or lower, but also exhibits signs of cognitive impairment resulting from a field sobriety test administered by a law enforcement officer.
Underage Drinking and Driving
No person under the age of 21 in the United States is legally allowed to consume, possess, or purchase alcoholic beverages. If a driver of a motor vehicle is under the age of 21 and has any measurable amount of alcohol in their system, they can receive a DWI.
For a free legal consultation with a drunk driving accidents lawyer serving Washington DC, call 800-598-7557
Types of Drunk Driving Car Accidents
The following are some types of instances where a person driving under the influence of alcohol causes injuries, damage, or losses to another person on the roadways:
- People who first drink alcohol in their own homes, and then leave their home to drive somewhere
- People who drink in either bars or restaurants and then drive home or to another place on the roadways
- People who drink alcohol at social parties or events, either at a private residence or business establishment and then drive home or to another place on the roadways
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Injuries Suffered From Drunk Driving Accidents
If you had any kind of involvement in a drunk driving accident, you likely suffered serious injuries as a result. Due to the cognitive challenges that result from inebriation, many drunk drivers actually drive into wrong lanes of traffic head-on, or sideswipe vehicles due to their inability to properly gauge distance, time, or speed.
Some of the types of injuries suffered from drunk driving accidents include traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal organ damage, internal bleeding, nerve damage, paralysis, amputations, or death.
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Liable Parties in Drunk Driving Accidents
While most cases will have a victim filing a claim against the drunk driver, there are actually several other parties that may have responsibility and liability regarding the drunk driving accident. These other parties may have legal liability depending on the facts and circumstances of the case.
- Drunk Driver. If a driver had a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit of 0.08% in Washington DC, they will receive a charge of DWI (or DUI if it is lower than 0.07% and appeared impaired). If a driver operates a motor vehicle while intoxicated and causes an accident, you have the legal right to pursue compensation for your injuries and losses.
- Public Establishment. You may have the legal right to pursue charges also against any public establishment such as a bar or restaurant that served a person alcohol and knowingly continued to do so even though they appeared intoxicated, per D.C. Code Annotated § 25-781.
- Negligent Entrustment. If the owner of a vehicle allows another person to drive while they know the other person has had enough to drink to make them intoxicated, a victim of a drunk driving accident may have the legal right to file a claim against the owner of the vehicle.
- Employer. If the drunk driver was an employee of a company and acting within the time frame or within their duties as an employee at the time of the drunk driving accident, a victim may have the legal right to bring a claim against the employer under a legal theory known as respondeat superior.
If you suffered any injuries related to a drunk driving accident, learn how a Washington DC drunk driving accident lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC can help you determine which parties you may have the legal right to bring a claim against to receive compensation for your injuries and losses.
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Washington DC Statute of Limitations on Drunk Driving Accidents
Drunk driving accidents can result in serious injuries, and in some cases, a personal injury lawsuit is appropriate. You do not have forever to file a lawsuit, though. According to the statute of limitations under the Code of the District of Columbia § 12–301, you only have three years from the date of the accident to take legal action against a negligent driver.
You also want to give your lawyer time to properly investigate and collect evidence for your case. They will also need time to negotiate with the drunk driver’s insurance company. The worst thing that can happen is that you let too much time pass and lose your right to take legal action.
For help with your case, call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444. We can handle your case from start to finish.
Consider a Washington DC Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer
If you suffered injuries or losses related to a drunk driving accident, you may face substantial medical bills, the inability to return to work due to your injuries resulting in lost wages, pain and suffering and property damage.
You have the right to compensation for someone else’s negligent decision to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol. You can hire a Washington DC drunk driving accident lawyer to help ensure your legal rights remain protected and help you understand your next steps. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444 today for a free case evaluation.
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