Drunk Driving Accidents
Drunk driving is the most common cause of fatal traffic crashes in the United States. Somewhere in America, someone dies in a drunk driving crash every hour of every day.
DUI accidents can be particularly complex cases. In many instances, a defendant is looking at serious time in jail or prison. And multiple victims with very serious or fatal injuries often means the insurance limits on automobile policies are insufficient to properly compensate those whose lives have been forever impacted by a driver who has climbed behind the wheel after having too much to drink.
Contacting an experienced Phoenix auto accident attorney is vital in the wake of a serious or fatal drunk driving crash in Arizona. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports drunk drivers account for about 10,000 traffic deaths per year, approximately one out of every three motorists killed on the nation’s roads.
Phoenix Injury Lawyers – Drunk Driving Accident Claims
Each year in Arizona, more than 250 people are killed in crashes with an intoxicated driver, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation. Nearly three-quarters of alcohol-related crashes occur in Arizona’s urban areas, including Phoenix, Mesa, Tempe and Scottsdale.
Arizona Dram Shop Law (§§ 4-311; 4-301; 4-312(B)) provides another potential means of recovery. Derived from the old world unit of measure, Dram Shop laws extend liability to liquor establishments and social hosts in the event that a guest who is served alcohol later causes a serious or fatal accident. Arizona law provides for vendor liability for both intoxicated minors and adults; the law holds social hosts responsible only if they serve alcohol to an underage minor. Because drunk-driving accidents often involve serious or fatal injuries and multiple victims, identifying all potential avenues for recovery is critical.
Drivers who cause accidents while under the influence of marijuana are an issue of increasing focus in states that have approved medical marijuana. Arizona passed its medical-marijuana law in 2010. Determining whether an at-fault driver is under the influence of cannabis (or has a prescription to use the drug) can significantly impact personal injury or wrongful death litigation. In fact, drivers who are under the influence of illegal drugs and prescription narcotics have become a serious safety risk to all motorists on the road.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found positive drug tests were reported in nearly 20 percent of fatally injured drivers who were tested for the presence of drugs. In fact, safety advocates believe the number of fatal accidents involving drugs has increased by about 25 percent in recent years.
Whether an at-fault driver is convicted of criminal charges in court can sometimes impact personal injury and wrongful death litigation. Early consultation with a law firm experienced in DUI accident and injury cases offers the best chance for success.
Consulting an experienced personal injury law firm in the Valley of the Sun will help best determine your rights. In many cases, these tragedies involve close friends or family members. Victims are as likely to come from inside an intoxicated driver’s vehicle. In such cases, a claim may be filed against the driver’s insurance policy. There are sometimes uninsured and underinsured motorist claims to explore. Arizona dram shop laws also make it possible to sue restaurants, bars and businesses that serve liquor to an intoxicated or underage patron.
At Abels & Annes, P.C. we have extensive experience in auto accident claims and litigation. When it comes to drunk-driving claims, insurance companies have a far better understanding of the extent of their exposure and liability. As a result, it’s not uncommon for insurance adjusters to attempt to make a quick settlement in the immediate aftermath of a serious or fatal crash. Signing insurance documents, giving written or recorded statements, or accepting payment can impact your ability to make a claim once the full extent of your injuries is known.
We understand dealing with doctors, hospitals and insurance companies is an intimidating and complex process. Unfortunately, those responsible for compensating victims too often use it to their advantage. Seeking legal advice can best protect you and your family.
At Abels & Annes, P.C. we are committed to each client we accept the responsibility of representing and work to build each case. Negotiating from this position of strength will put us in the best position to obtain a full and fair settlement once the extent of your injuries are known and the full cost of your accident can be determined. If you’ve been injured in a Phoenix crash with an intoxicated driver, contact us today for a confidential consultation. There is No Fee Unless You Win. We are available to talk to you about your accident claim 24/7, and that does include nights and weekends. Give us a call at (855) PHX-LAWYER.