Sometimes, accidents are unavoidable. Anything from vehicle malfunctions and unforeseen hazards to changing weather conditions and slippery roads can lead to an unpreventable crash. But when someone chooses to drink and drive, they miscalculate the consequences. Thousands of drunk driving accidents occur each year, injuring and killing innocent drivers on the road. For this reason, Florida imposes harsh penalties for those who choose to get behind the wheel while under the influence.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a drunk driving accident, get in touch with an attorney who will hold the drunk and reckless driver accountable for their negligent actions and help you seek damages to address the losses and hardships associated with the collision. From Florida’s drunk driving laws to information surrounding liability and potential recoverable compensation, the attorneys with Baker Legal Team can help you navigate this difficult time.
Drunk Driving Laws in Florida
In Florida, driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher is a criminal offense. Likewise, a driver can be cited for driving under the influence even if they have a BAC of less than 0.08% if impairment of their “normal faculties” prevents them from driving safely.
The consequences of a DUI conviction vary depending on how many previous DUIs the individual has received. Upon a driver’s first DUI conviction, they may be required to pay a fine of $500 to $2,000, complete 50 hours of community service, and serve six months in jail. If their BAC is 0.15% or more or there’s a minor in the vehicle, the fine may increase to between $2,000 and $4,000. Two or more convictions result in exponentially worse consequences.
However, a drunk driver doesn’t need to be convicted for accident victims to have a valid claim because the burden of proof is lower in a civil proceeding than in a criminal proceeding. While compensation may be awarded if the drunk driver is convicted, injury victims may still be able to obtain compensation if the at-fault driver isn’t convicted or pleads to a lesser charge.
Who Is Liable after a Drunk Driving Accident in Boca Raton?
All Florida drivers have a duty of care not to injure others while operating a motor vehicle. If a driver causes an accident as a result of negligence—particularly if that negligence stems from alcohol consumption—there’s a clear breach of that duty of care. If you or a deceased relative were involved in a drunk driving accident, Florida law allows you to initiate a claim against the driver that caused your injuries. You must show that the defendant in your case is liable for your injuries to recover damages.
What Damages Can Be Recovered after a Drunk Driving Accident?
If you were injured in a drunk driving accident as a result of another at-fault party, you may be wondering the kind of damages you’re entitled to recuperate. Compensation varies widely depending on the nature of the crash, but common damages you may be eligible to recover include:
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Cost of living with a disability
- Emotional distress
- Wrongful death
An expert Boca Raton personal injury lawyer can help you determine the compensation that you may be eligible to recover based on the circumstances of the accident.
Contact an Experienced Boca Raton Drunk Driving Accident Injury Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a drunk driving accident and need help putting together a case against the at-fault party, contact the experienced personal injury lawyers at Baker Legal Team. Robert B. Baker can provide expert guidance at every stage of the legal process and review your situation to determine the most strategic approach based on your circumstances. Robert is dedicated to fighting for your rights.
As a board-certified personal injury lawyer with experience handling complex claims and tricky insurance companies, Robert B. Baker has represented South Florida residents for more than 30 years. Robert and the rest of our trusted team have dealt with drunk driving accident claims and know the ins and outs of Florida law. We can help fight for the compensation you deserve. Give us a call at (561) 320-0000 or complete our contact form today!