At Morgan & Morgan, our attorneys are determined to holding drunk drivers accountable for their actions and ensuring our clients regain financial stability following an unexpected crash. Our Atlanta attorneys have a history of success handling drunk driving claims and have recovered millions to help our clients cover out-of-pocket expenses, such as medical bills and lost wages. To help discourage reckless behavior among Atlanta residents, our attorneys have also pursued punitive damages, the sole purpose of which is to punish the defendant and to deter similar behavior in the future.
If you have been injured in a crash involving a drunk driver, you may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit. To learn how our Atlanta drunk driving attorneys may be able to help you collect compensation for your losses, please complete our free case review form today.
What Should I Do After a Crash?
You should seek medical attention immediately following an accident regardless of whether you believe you have been injured. Injuries or indications of an injury(ies), as diagnosed by your physician, can have a direct impact on the amount of compensation you may be awarded in your drunk driving lawsuit. Following your medical evaluation, it is important to find a lawyer to handle your lawsuit. When seeking representation, it is vital that you choose an experienced attorney who regularly handles drunk driving cases. Our Atlanta attorneys understand the differences between drunk driving and other car accident cases and the proper way to present your case to the jury.
Punitive Damages in Drunk Driving Lawsuits
In Georgia, drunk driving accident victims are permitted to seek punitive damages. Awarded in addition to compensable damages (i.e. medical bills, lost wages), punitive damages are intended to punish the drunk driver for their reckless behavior and to deter similar behavior in the future. It is important to note that punitive damages apply exclusively to personal injury cases and may not be awarded in wrongful death claims.
Punitive damages are not awarded in all cases. The jury has discretion in awarding these damages. The decision will generally depend on the severity of the accident and resulting injuries, the blood alcohol of the drunk driver, and whether third parties may have contributed to the accident in some way.
Third Party Liability
Drunk drivers are not the only parties that can be held liable in the event of an accident.
Dram Shop: A bar or restaurant may be liable for the drunk driver’s actions if they sold alcohol to a minor or provided alcohol to a “noticeably intoxicated” adult who drove while intoxicated.
Social Host: Individual(s) (e.g. clubs, employers, fraternities, sororities) providing alcohol to those underage or serving a “noticeably intoxicated” guest may be liable for damages caused by the drunk driver.
Negligent Entrustment: A vehicle owner who negligently permits an individual who they knew or should have known was intoxicated may also be responsible for damage caused by the driver.
If you or a loved on has been injured in a crash caused by a drunk driver, you may have legal recourse. To learn how our Atlanta drunk driving attorneys may be able to help you recover compensation for your losses, please complete our free case review formtoday.