Have you suffered debilitating injuries after being struck by a drunk driver? You can hold the liable party accountable for their negligence when you reach out to a dedicated Olive Branch personal injury lawyer at Gatti, Keltner, Bievenu & Montesi PLC.
Learn more about what to expect from your drunk driving accident insurance and civil claims process when you contact our office for a free consultation.
Determining Liability in a Drunk Driving Accident Claim in Olive Branch
In pursuing a civil drunk driving accident claim, establishing liability will be essential. Although it may seem obvious that the drunk driver who hit you is responsible for causing your injuries, your attorney will still need to obtain compelling evidence to support your case.
However, in addition to the drunk driver, there is also the possibility that local restaurants, bars, or retail stores, also commonly referred to as dram shops, could share liability. If these establishments sold or served alcohol to someone who is already under the influence, and that party leader goes on to cause a car accident, they could be held accountable for the victim’s damages.
Your attorney will need to prove liability based on a preponderance of the evidence to obtain a favorable outcome in your case. Some of the more common types of evidence used to prove fault in a drunk driving accident claim include:
- Chemical blood alcohol test results
- Police and accident reports
- Reports from accident reconstructionists
- Video footage of the collision
- Documentation and photos of injuries
- Photos of property damages
- Cell phone records
- Other forensic evidence
Penalties the Liable Party Faces
Many drunk driving accident victims wonder whether the liable party will face criminal charges. It will be up to the state’s prosecuting attorney to determine whether the defendant should face DUI charges in criminal court or other charges related to the injuries you sustained.
If the defendant is found guilty of drunk driving in criminal court, they could face a variety of penalties, including:
- Community service
- Fines or restitution
- Suspension or revocation of their driver’s license
- Suspension or revocation of any professional licenses
- Other criminal consequences
This is in addition to the compensation they may be required to pay you if your civil drunk driving accident claim is successful. You can get a better understanding of the consequences the liable party will face and the amount of compensation they may be ordered to pay you when you contact your attorney to discuss the specific details of your case.
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How to Get the Most Out of Your Drunk Driving Accident Claim
If you hope to maximize the amount of compensation you can be awarded in your drunk driving accident claim, it is important to be prepared to file both insurance and civil claims. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to attempt to deny the claims of those who suffer injuries in drug driving accidents.
Despite the fact that Tennessee is a fault state for car insurance and accident purposes, insurance companies may argue that they are not liable for the victim’s damages based on the terms of the policyholder’s policy.
In fact, some insurance companies as will argue that the insurance coverage is not in place if the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident. However, that does not necessarily mean that this is true or that the insurance company is not financially obligated to you.
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Dealing with the Insurer
Dealing with the insurance company is not an easy process. This is particularly true when they are attempting to wrongfully deny injury victims the compensation they are entitled to. Your attorney has experience dealing with unscrupulous insurers.
Our firm recognizes the tricks the insurance company has up its sleeve and is not afraid to go up against them to get you the most out of your claim. You can avoid being taken advantage of during your greatest time of need when you have your drunk driver accident lawyer in Olive Branch step in and negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf.
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How and When Insurance Settlements Are Paid Out
The insurance company is going to do everything they can to avoid paying out on your claim. Insurance claims are paid out based on the limits of the policyholder’s policy. Tennessee law requires drivers to purchase a minimum of $50,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage and $15,000 per accident and property damage liability coverage.
If the drunk driver only purchased the minimum of $50,000 in bodily injury liability coverage, but you have medical expenses that exceed $100,000, the insurance company will not be on the hook for the excess. The insurance company would only be required to compensate you up to $50,000 for your medical bills.
For this reason, you should always be prepared to bring your keys to court. Insurance settlements often are not enough to cover the victim’s damages in their entirety. Although bringing your case to court can feel overwhelming, doing so could mean you have a better chance of recovering the compensation you deserve.
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Money for You
Recover Maximum Compensation for Your Suffering
You may be surprised to learn that you have the right to be compensated for all of the ways you have been impacted by the drunk driving accident.
Although money is not going to change what you have been through, the financial burden you are experiencing could be significantly less if you win your civil claim against the liable party. Some of them are common types of damages you could recoup in your Olive Branch drunk driving accident claim include:
- Diminished quality of life
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Physical pain and suffering
- Loss of income
- Diminished earning potential
- Medical expenses
- Costs of vehicle repairs
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Meet with a Drunk Driver Accident Attorney in Olive Branch Today
After everything you have been through, holding the drunk driver and other liable parties accountable for their negligent actions is the least we can do to help you get through this difficult time in your life.
Start working on your insurance and civil claims today when you contact an experienced Olive Branch drunk driver accident attorney at Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi PLC. Our firm proudly offers no-cost, risk-free consultations to drunk driving accident victims across all of Olive Branch and the surrounding cities. Take advantage of this opportunity by calling our office or filling out our quick contact form.