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Get Your Questions Answered. Call For Your Free 30 Min Evaluation Today! (310) 982-2291

  • By: Moss Bollinger
  • Published: August 3, 2022
A damaged car on the side of the road, surrounded by broken glass and debris - Moss Bollinger LLP

After experiencing a car accident, there are a lot of variables to consider. The overall experience is typically frustrating and scary. However, the situation can be even worse if the other party is a drunk driver. If you are in an accident with a drunk driver, know your options for obtaining financial compensation for your injuries.

California Car Accidents: Potential Compensation

  • Medical expenses (and future medical costs)
  • Lost wages (and future lost earnings)
  • Property damage
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Mental anguish

Proving Liability After You are in an Accident with a Drunk Driver:

When you are in a car accident with a drunk driver, you will need to prove negligence. In California, we have something called negligence per se. This legal doctrine states that when a person violates a particular provision of a statute, that action is presumed to be negligent. According to California’s negligence per se doctrine, the other driver is legally if they violate a particular law. Some laws a drunk driver often breaks include driving under the influence of alcohol, refusing to take a DUI chemical test, or driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration exceeding the legal limit.

Did You Sustain an Injury in a California Car Accident with a Drunk Driver?

If you sustained an injury from a California car accident that involved a drunk driver, you might be eligible to sue for compensation for your injury and damages. Under negligence per se, the burden of proof is shifted to the defendant, requiring them to show that they did not violate the statute at issue or that the violation was not the cause for the plaintiff’s injury.

Can I File a Civil Suit if the Drunk Driver is Already Facing Criminal Charges?

There’s a lot of confusion regarding drunk driving accidents and criminal charges when an injury is involved. While the drunk driver will likely face criminal charges, the criminal charges do not prevent an injured party from filing a civil lawsuit. The two are entirely different legal causes of action with separate court procedures requiring different burdens of proof. The civil suit does not depend on the success of the criminal charges to succeed (or fail). While the drunk driver can face severe consequences from a criminal conviction, none of the consequences from a criminal charge conviction will reimburse or compensate the injured party for their losses. That’s the purpose of filing a civil suit when you are injured in an accident with a drunk driver.

What Are Your Options for Financial Compensation After a California Car Accident?

If you are hit by a drunk driver in California, it’s best to meet with an experienced personal injury attorney and share the details of the accident. An attorney can assist you in determining the best course of action and help you choose an end goal. Attempting to determine a possible settlement “average” using online calculators or other potential averages isn’t reliable since every accident case is unique. Even when two accidents result in similar injuries could resolve for significantly different amounts depending on other factors.

If you are injured after a car accident with a drunk driver and need to file a California personal injury claim, you want Moss Bollinger, Sherman Oaks, California personal injury attorney, on your side. He’s dedicated to protecting and asserting the rights of his clients. Call (310) 982-2291 today for a free consultation or contact us online.

Moss Bollinger LLP - Sherman Oaks, CA

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Free 30 Min Evaluation Today! (310) 982-2291

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