Suffolk County Drunk Driving Car Accident Lawyer
Although they do not intend to cause a crash, drunk drivers are incredibly reckless and still breaking the law. The fact that a defendant driver was intoxicated at the time of an accident is strong evidence of fault in a resulting personal injury claim.
A Suffolk County drunk driving car accident lawyer could help pursue compensation from a defendant who was drunk at the time of the collision. They could work to gather evidence that points to intoxication as a cause of the crash. An attorney could also evaluate how that incident has affected a person’s life to pursue an appropriate amount of compensation.
Drunk Driving Laws in Suffolk County
Most traffic laws are mere infractions that exist to encourage safe driving on Suffolk County roads. Convictions may be a payment of a fine and a few points on a person’s driving record. However, when the behavior of a driver threatens the wellbeing of others, a harsher penalty could ensue. A prominent example of a severe traffic violation is the act of drunk driving.
New York Vehicle and Traffic Law §1192 is the state’s core statute concerning drunk driving. It states that it is illegal for any person to operate a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol. Additionally, it is also unlawful to drive while impaired by any drug or medication.
A violation of this law could hold serious consequences, including jail time, hefty fines, and a loss of license. If a case resulted in a finding of guilt, whether through admission or a trial, it could prove that a defendant was impaired at the time of the crash. This will have a significant impact on a claim for damages. A Suffolk County drunk driving car accident attorney could help victims establish the defendant’s fault and pursue full compensation.
Using Concurrent Criminal Charges as Proof of Fault
The outcome of a criminal trial concerning drunk driving is independent of a civil claim for damages. However, this does not mean the cases are not related. An important concept of law is called res judicata. This means that a court cannot consider a question of fact more than once, and if a criminal court concludes that a defendant was drunk at the time of an accident, then the defendant cannot argue that they were not drunk during a civil trial.
A criminal charge conviction could be influential in a civil claim for damages. While plaintiffs usually bear the burden of proving defendant fault for an accident, a criminal conviction allows plaintiffs to skip this step in their claims. Instead, the case might focus on the appropriate level of compensation the injured party is entitled to.
A Suffolk County drunk driving car accident attorney could help leverage a criminal conviction into a claim for recovering damages. These damages could include medical bills, payments for emotional traumas, and reimbursement for lost wages. Even if a criminal case does not end with a conviction, injured individuals could still pursue a claim for compensation.
Contact a Suffolk County Drunk Driving Car Accident Attorney for a Case Evaluation
Drunk driving or driving while high is one of the most reckless actions that a person can do. Not only does this place them at a high risk of personal danger, but it also jeopardizes the wellbeing of other people on the road. A person who was drunk at the time of an accident can face significant criminal and civil liability.
A Suffolk County drunk driving car accident attorney is available to help you pursue a civil claim for damages. They could explain your rights to you and track the criminal side of the case to determine if that outcome could help your claim for damages. Reach out today to see how they could help you.