Drunk driving accidents are bad enough when it’s two cars involved. When a pedestrian gets hit, however, the injuries tend to be far more catastrophic and severe. Drunk driving is a serious epidemic on America’s roadways, with nearly 1.4 million arrests per year, and causing around 30 percent of all traffic-related fatalities annually.
If you’ve been hit by a drunk driver, or have lost a parent, spouse or child to one, you can be entitled to collect damages to cover your financial losses. Learn what happens when a pedestrian gets hurt in a drunk driving accident, and how having a car accident lawyer can get you the maximum compensation.
Compensation for Drunk Driving Accidents
If you get hit by a car and the driver was under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicants, you can collect damages to cover your injuries. The exact damages available will depend largely on your individual case and the severity of your injury, but can include:
- Hospital bills
- Doctor’s visits
- Major medical procedures
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Lost wages and compensation
- Loss of consortium and relationships
- Damage to the quality of life
- Punitive damages in severe cases
- Funeral expenses, if the victim is your spouse, parent or child
In order to get the compensation for the damages listed above, you’ll need to prove negligence, or that the accident was the driver’s fault. Put simply, you need to demonstrate that the driver had a responsibility not to put other people in danger while operating their car, that they failed in that responsibility, and that this failure was the cause (direct or indirect) of your injury.
Even if, for example, you leap out of the way of a careening car and hit your head falling on the curb, the driver could still be responsible. In most cases, if the driver is shown to be intoxicated, it can be assumed that they were negligent. That leaves only to demonstrate that their negligence caused your injury.
Civil Cases vs. Criminal Charges
If a drunk driver causes an accident, they will likely be arrested and subject to criminal charges. These are distinct and separate from your case to collect damages. Even if the drunk driver gets fined as a result of their actions, those fines don’t go to you. You’ll need to file a case in civil court to collect compensation to deal with your mounting medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
How a Car Accident Lawyer Helps
Many people make the mistake of thinking their case is cut and dried, only to hit a wall when an insurance company refuses to pay their claim and even goes on the attack, trying to act like the victim is the one responsible rather than the drunk driver. That’s why you need an experienced and qualified car accident lawyer in your corner.
For many years the lawyers at McConnell & Tormey Law have helped people stand up against insurance company attempts to avoid payment, and get the compensation our clients deserve. If you’re in Texas and need help with collecting from a drunk driver, give us a call to discuss your case today.