You were trying to get home. You never expected to be hit by a drunk driver. You have dealt with a lot, from medical bills to the pain and suffering you have experienced. And you might not be sure what you should do next.
Drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol may face criminal prosecution. Still, you may also have the option to pursue compensation in civil court for your damages. A Kings Mountain DUI accident lawyer from Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, is ready to help you with your case.
How Serious Are Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Accidents?
Driving under the influence (DUI) is when someone drives on the road, either under the influence of drugs or alcohol. These substances impair people’s ability to think clearly and respond to changes while driving. It puts the person and other drivers at risk for collisions and severe accidents.
DUI accidents can cause severe injury and sometimes even death. For example, people in a DUI accident can experience head and back trauma. These injuries can result in severe disabilities and a decline in quality of life. In addition to hurting people, DUI accidents can cause significant property damage, leading to costly vehicle repairs.
Suppose you have been the victim of a DUI accident. In that case, you may be able to pursue compensation from those responsible for the accident.
What Kind of Compensation Can I Get After a DUI Accident?
You may have extensive costs after a DUI accident. For example, maybe you have significant medical bills from emergency room care and surgeries. You may have also had to make repairs to your vehicle or replace other items that were in your car. You may be able to get compensation to cover the costs related to the accident, like your medical and auto repair bills, or for your pain and suffering.
Suppose your loved one died because of a DUI accident. In that case, you might be able to pursue compensation for things like funeral costs and financial support that you have lost. You would seek compensation after a DUI accident in civil court.
Is There Criminal Prosecution for the Impaired Driver?
Like most states, North Carolina has specific laws about impaired driving. Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol can face fines and jail time.
There are different levels of severity, and the exact fine or sentence will depend on what happened and the person’s history. The actions in criminal court will be separate from any compensation you pursue in civil court.
How Can a DUI Accident Lawyer Help Me?
Like other personal injury attorneys, a DUI accident lawyer works with you to recover compensation, specifically after a DUI accident. We understand that this can be both an emotionally and physically challenging time, notably when someone’s reckless actions contributed to your accident.
Our legal team will go over your case and who was at fault for your accident. Based on North Carolina’s laws and regulations, we will go over your options and what sort of compensation you may be able to get. If you decide to work with us, we will work to get you any deserved compensation related to the DUI accident.
We’ll help with the paperwork, answer the hard legal questions, and communicate with everyone involved. This makes the legal process much smoother and less stressful for you.
The Time Frame for Filing a DUI Accident Lawsuit
In North Carolina, under S. § 1-52, you typically have about three years from the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. However, under S. § 1-53, you have two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit if your loved one died in the accident.
Working with a DUI accident lawyer can help ensure that you don’t miss any deadlines for filing a lawsuit. Even if you are unsure about filing a lawsuit or pursuing compensation, consulting with a knowledgeable attorney can help you understand your options.
What Steps Should I Take After a DUI Accident?
Like any motor vehicle accident, you need to focus first on your safety and health. If you are able, put distance between yourself and the wreck so that you don’t risk further injury. Seek appropriate medical treatment. Even if you feel fine, it can help to be checked out by a doctor. A medical team may find injuries of which you were unaware.
Make sure to contact the appropriate authorities, such as the local police. Driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal. So, there may be more law enforcement involvement in these types of accidents. Make sure to be as accurate as possible with the information you provide to the police.
If you can, document damages at the crash site. Take videos and photos to show where the accident happened, who was involved, and what damages occurred. In addition to reporting anything to your insurance company, consider getting legal counsel to help you determine your next steps.
Get a Free Consultation Today
While there may be justice in criminal court for the impaired driver, you do have the option of going through the civil court for compensation. It starts with a simple conversation so that you can move forward. Our firm is ready to help you with your case and answer any questions you may have.
Contact Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, today for your free consultation.