The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) tells us that about four million adults admit to driving “under the influence” of drugs or alcohol at least once in the past year. Meanwhile, the FBI reports that “intoxicated” driving accounts for more than a million arrests annually and is the third-most commonly charged crime in the U.S., after theft and drug possession.
In fact, 29 people die every day in drunk driving crashes (over 10,000 deaths each year). It costs the United States $44 billion annually, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). And Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD’s) statistics show that every day in America, around 300,000 people drive drunk, but fewer than 4,000 (1.3 percent) are arrested or charged with it.
But none of the statistics matter if you or a loved one has been seriously injured (or worse) by a drunk driver’s irresponsible actions. To the Kentucky DUI wreck attorneys at the Johnson Law Firm, you’re more than a statistic. That’s why you get the individual attention you deserve as we fight to make sure you and your family members are compensated fully and fairly for the selfish and careless acts of DUI (drug) and DWI (alcohol) drivers.
As personal injury attorneys with more than 15 years of experience in the state of Kentucky, we have helped countless victims of “intoxication/impairment” accidents put their lives back on track by fighting for their right to appropriate compensation from drunk drivers after a wreck. To get started, call us at 606-433-0682 or fill out this form.
DUI Accidents in Kentucky
In Kentucky, a person is legally intoxicated and may be charged with DWI if their blood alcohol content (BAC) is more than 0.08. Kentucky has lower BAC limits for commercial drivers (0.04) and has a “zero tolerance” for intoxicated drivers under age 21. All too many Kentuckians are injured by these thoughtless violators of our intoxication laws. The most common injuries suffered by DWI/DUI accident victims are:
- Neck and back injuries – Whiplash (a soft-tissue neck injury) is perhaps the most commonly reported
- Leg and knee injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal organ damage
- Concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
Legal Liability & Damages
Much of the evidence that can prove liability in an intoxicated driving case is time-sensitive. Additionally, evidence disappears, and witness memories begin to fade. So contacting an attorney as soon as possible after an accident gets the investigation started quickly. Law enforcement’s investigative energies are focused solely on criminal activity. In civil matters, it’s the injured plaintiff’s lawyers who must find their own evidence. Of course, if the drunk driver who hit you is convicted in criminal court, it certainly helps your civil case for compensation. But can you count on that happening? No. That’s why your lawyer begins investigations immediately after the wreck and often can assist law enforcement as they investigate. Damages you are entitled to collect from the defendant after an intoxicated driving accident include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of current and future income (including employer contributions to your company health insurance, retirement, and other benefit programs)
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage (such as automobile repair/replacement and anything of value in your vehicle which was destroyed in the accident)
- Wrongful death.
- Possible punitive damages.
By identifying all who may be liable for your damages, your lawyer increases your prospects for receiving full injury compensation. What if the driver doesn’t have sufficient insurance coverage to pay all damages? If your lawyer uncovers additional defendants other than the driver, you could win additional compensation. For example, Kentucky law also allows those injured by a drunk driver to hold a bartender, server, and – by association – the pub or restaurant manager and owner responsible for legal damages. All the law requires is that you (and your lawyer) prove that a reasonable person should have known that he or she was serving a person who was already intoxicated.
Liquor stores are also held to the same legal duty of protecting the public from drunk drivers. They are prohibited by law from selling alcohol to a person who reasonably “appears under the influence of alcoholic beverages.” But holding a restaurant, bar or liquor store responsible for their portion of the damages owed to you is complicated. An experienced personal injury attorney who understands DUI/DWI injury compensation is a valuable weapon in your fight for fair damages.
The Kentucky accident attorneys of the Johnson Law Firm aggressively pursue claims against intoxicated drivers and the businesses that served them and then sent them out on the road to commit drunk driving mayhem. We also deal with insurance companies, their pesky adjusters, and the lawyers who protect them from paying claims. Do YOU have the experience, patience and tenacity to win against those guys? We do.
To discuss your legal options, contact our offices in Pikeville, Kentucky, today to speak with a knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyer. Protect yourself and your family. Call us today or fill out our online form to get started.