Drunk Driving Accidents in Tallahassee, Florida
In the blink of an eye, a drunk driver can cause serious injuries that result in long-term damage. In many cases, a drunk driver’s dangerous decisions can change the course of your life or your family’s life. Drunk drivers cannot frequently make reasonable decisions behind the wheel, which can ultimately cause more serious injuries when they get in an accident.
Did you suffer injuries in a drunk driving accident around Florida State University? Did you suffer injuries in an accident with a drunk driver leaving 926 Bar and Grill or one of the many other bars throughout the Tallahassee area?
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we can help give you a better idea of what compensation you might deserve for those injuries and how to pursue compensation best to maximize your claim results. Contact a Tallahassee drunk driving accident lawyer at 850-790-5830 to schedule your Tallahassee drunk driving accident consultation.
Table of Contents
- Get Help For After a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident
- Compensation for Drunk Driving Accident Claims
- What You Need To Know About Drunk Driving Accidents
- Dangers of Intoxicated Driving
- Fighting the Insurance Company
- What To Do After a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident
- Contact a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer
- Frequently Asked Questions
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA: Help for Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident Victims
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we know that drunk driving accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries and, in many cases, long-term implications for the victim’s finances, medical needs, and personal freedoms. We aim to help our clients recover maximum compensation for those injuries, fighting on their behalf to help them through those often difficult claims.
Compassionate Legal Support
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we do not simply take over your drunk driving accident claim and leave you on the outside, wondering what comes next or how you can best protect yourself. Instead, we provide ongoing support throughout the claim process.
We offer compassionate legal advice at every stage of the claim process. Our ongoing support and resources allow our clients to feel confident about managing the challenges that may come their way due to their drunk driving accident claim.
Extensive Legal Resources and Representation
After a drunk driving accident, you may find yourself dealing with an insurance company that does not seem to want to pay out the full compensation you may deserve. At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we have the resources to take on the big-name insurance companies and fight for the compensation you deserve. While we cannot guarantee the results of your drunk driving accident claim, we can help provide you with extensive legal resources and representation that can help increase the odds of a positive outcome for your claim.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we have conveniently-located offices on both Florida coasts. Our team of attorneys will also offer virtual consultations so that you can easily make it to a meeting and get the help and support you need. Contact us today to get help with your drunk driving accident claim.
Compensation for Drunk Driving Accident Claims in Tallahassee
A drunk driving accident can mean immense expenses. When you suffer severe injuries, you may need comprehensive medical care to help you recover as fully as possible for your injuries.
That medical care can lead to substantial medical bills. In some cases, those medical bills can continue long after the initial accident, including some lifelong medical costs that may make it very difficult to manage your other financial needs.
You may use the funds from a drunk driving accident claim to help cover many of the costs associated with your medical treatment. However, in many cases, you may not know exactly how much compensation you should expect or what that claim might look like.
Many factors can impact the compensation you can recover as part of a Tallahassee drunk driving accident claim, including:
- Who caused your accident
- The insurance policy that covers the liable party
- The injuries you sustained in the accident
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we will help you take a look at the damages you could potentially recover for your drunk driving accident injuries.
What medical costs did you have to pay after the accident?
Severe injuries after a drunk driving accident can lead to heavy medical expenses. You may have had PIP coverage, required for Florida drivers, to help cover the initial cost of medical treatment following your accident. However, for many injuries, including spinal injuries, broken bones requiring surgery, or brain injuries, your medical costs can far exceed the coverage offered by your personal injury protection policy.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we can help you calculate the full damages you sustained because of your drunk driving accident so you can include those critical elements as part of your claim.
Did you have to miss work after your drunk driving accident injuries?
Lost time at work can prove devastating for many Tallahassee drunk driving accident victims. Remaining out of work for even days can substantially impact your income. If you miss more work, leading to additional income losses, you may face an even greater financial strain.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we help our clients take a comprehensive look at the income they lost because of their drunk driving accident injuries, including long-term earnings losses or lost earning potential due to the inability to return to work in their field.
What suffering did your drunk driving accident injuries cause?
In addition to substantial physical pain, drunk driving accident injuries can cause emotional devastation. You may suffer from PTSD, anxiety, or depression after your accident. Furthermore, many people find that drunk driving accident injuries cause lost enjoyment of life or leave them struggling with the loss of the independence they once took for granted.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, our attorneys want to ensure that you receive compensation for the non-financial losses that may have also gone along with your accident. We look closely at how to include those elements as part of a comprehensive, compelling injury claim.
Did the court assign punitive damages to the drunk driver?
In some cases, the court may look at the devastating extent of your injuries and the gross negligence committed by the drunk driver and issue punitive damages to the driver. Those punitive damages paid directly by the driver can add to the compensation you may ultimately recover for your drunk driving accident injuries. However, punitive damages will usually appear as part of the drunk driver’s criminal case, not your injury claim.
Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accidents: What You Need to Know
Tallahassee may face unique challenges that can increase the risk of dangerous drunk driving accidents.
Like many other big cities, Tallahassee has many dangerous intersections and roadways where accidents may occur more frequently.
Dangerous intersections and roads across Tallahassee may include:
- Orange Avenue
- Tennessee Street
- Apalachee Parkway
- White Drive and Pensacola Street
Drunk drivers may have a harder time navigating those dangerous intersections than the average sober driver, which may lead to increased accident potential for drivers under the influence.
High Tourist Traffic
Every year, Tallahassee hosts approximately 2.4 million visitors. Tourists and visitors may, in many cases, drink considerably more than Tallahassee residents and may engage in more potentially reckless behavior, including getting behind the wheel while inebriated.
Furthermore, high tourist traffic means that Tallahassee has several businesses, including bars and restaurants, that cater to the desires of those customers, which may mean a greater overall risk of even residents in the Tallahassee area choosing to drink and drive.
Game Day Drinking
Thanks to Florida State University’s Tallahassee location, many Tallahassee residents and visitors may find themselves tailgating and drinking on game days.
While tailgating may offer a great opportunity to bond with friends and family, excess drinking before or after the game can increase the odds of overindulging. They may still suffer from inebriation when getting behind the wheel after the event.
Game days can lead to more drinking and driving accidents around Florida State University and local bars where the game may play.
Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Near Me 833-552-7274
Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Tallahassee
Drinking and driving can lead to many life-altering injuries.
- Brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Back and neck injuries
- Heavy bruising
People involved in drunk driving accidents often end up with long-term mobility issues and other challenges, including chronic pain.
The Dangers of Intoxicated Driving in Tallahassee
Driving while intoxicated can significantly increase the danger the driver may cause or contribute to on the road.
Frequently, drunk drivers in Tallahassee end up causing hazards to other drivers.
- Drunk drivers often behave unpredictably, which can make it difficult to determine what they will do next. As a result, many people have a hard time avoiding them.
- Drunk drivers are more likely to engage in reckless behavior since they may not be able to judge their actions on the road safely.
- Drunk drivers may fail to see what happens around them on the road, raising the odds that they will cause a dangerous collision.
- Drunk drivers can struggle to react appropriately in the event of potential danger on the road, which may cause them to create the potential for a more serious accident.
Drivers who choose to drive while intoxicated may bear liability for any accident caused by their dangerous actions.
Fighting the Insurance Company After a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident
You got into an auto accident with a drunk driver in Tallahassee. You may even have a criminal conviction that shows the other driver’s dangerous behaviors and intoxication behind the wheel. Unfortunately, that does not necessarily mean that getting the compensation you deserve for those injuries will prove easy. The insurance company may deny coverage for the liable driver, deny the extent of your injuries, or pressure you to accept a settlement offer that does not at all reflect your needs.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we deal effectively with the insurance company and pursue the full compensation our clients deserve. We have the resources to take on big-name insurance companies after a drunk driving accident, and we fight to help our clients obtain the compensation they deserve for the serious injuries and financial losses that may accompany a drunk driving accident.
After a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident: Your Next Steps
Hopefully, after your drunk driving accident in Tallahassee, you received medical attention from a qualified medical care provider, which can help you document the full extent of your injuries and set you on the road to recovery.
After that, however, you may need to continue to act carefully to secure maximum compensation for drunk driving accident injuries.
- Get a copy of the police report. Ensure it includes accurate information about when and where your accident occurred. If you notice inaccurate information on the police report, contact the Tallahassee Police Department to discuss the problem and have it fixed, if possible.
- Start a file with all your medical care receipts and bills. Clearly document every medical cost you pay for as you manage your recovery. The longer your recovery goes on, the more difficult it may prove to collect those medical bills from scratch.
- Keep a journal that details the progression of your recovery and your physical and emotional state along the way.
- Talk to our attorneys to discuss your right to compensation after a drunk driving accident, including how you can best secure the compensation you may deserve.
You do not have to handle the legal a drunk driving accident claim alone. At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we help guide our clients through that often difficult process and provide them with comprehensive legal support, answers to their questions, and guidance on the steps they need to take to protect themselves.
Contact a Tallahassee Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Today
If you suffered injuries in a Tallahassee drunk driving accident, you might deserve compensation for those injuries. At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we aim to help Tallahassee drunk driving accident victims recover the full compensation they may deserve for those often-severe injuries. Contact us today at 850-790-5830 for your free consultation.
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How do punitive damages work in a Tallahassee drunk driving accident case?
In some cases, when the court hears the criminal claim for the driver that caused your drunk driving accident, the judge may note that the driver committed an act of immense negligence that entitles you to additional damages, known as punitive damages. Punitive damages act as a punishment, or fine, paid by the driver directly.
The court may base punitive damages on the extent of the driver’s negligence: for example, a driver who drove while extremely intoxicated may end up facing more punitive damages than a driver who caused an accident while mildly intoxicated. The court may also base those damages on the extent of the injuries and limitations the driver’s dangerous, negligent actions caused.
Punitive damages, unlike settlement damages from an injury claim, count as income, according to the IRS. You will need to report any compensation you receive as punitive damages to the IRS and pay taxes on that amount.
I know the driver who hit me had too much to drink, but he did not receive a drunk driving conviction. Can I still file an injury claim for a drunk driving accident?
The other driver’s intoxication does not necessarily factor into the direct compensation you can expect for the damages associated with your drunk driving accident injuries. While a drunk driving accident conviction may help you get punitive damages paid directly by the liable driver, often, drunk drivers do not have the funds to pay those punitive damages anyway. Furthermore, the court does not always award punitive damages in drunk driving accident cases.
If you suffered injuries in a Tallahassee drunk driving accident, regardless of whether the other driver received a drunk driving accident conviction, you still may pursue compensation for your injuries. While the drunk driving conviction can serve as evidence of the other driver’s negligent behavior on the road, a lack of that conviction will not automatically prevent you from pursuing compensation for your injuries.
Does the drunk driver that caused my accident have to pay for my medical bills?
Whether you sought medical care at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital or HCA Florida Capital Hospital, you likely have immense medical bills to deal with after your drunk driving accident. Accident victims often have difficulty managing their finances and paying for those costly medical expenses.
While the drunk driver that caused your accident may bear liability for the incident, that does not mean that the drunk driver has to pay your medical bills directly. Instead, as the injured party, you will need to make arrangements to take care of your medical needs while you recover.
While you cannot require the drunk driver to pay your medical bills directly, you can take several steps that may make it easier for you to afford your medical bills.
Use your PIP Insurance
Under Florida law, drivers must carry PIP insurance covering 80 percent of the first $10,000 medical costs following an auto accident. PIP insurance makes it easier for people who may have sustained severe injuries in an accident to get the medical care they need for those injuries. You should use your PIP coverage regardless of who caused your accident.
Use Your Health Insurance
If you carry personal health insurance, it can serve as a vital payment source for many medical costs that can follow severe injuries. Health insurance can help alleviate much of the financial strain of your injuries. Many policies include an out-of-pocket maximum that determines the most you will have to pay for your medical needs each year.
Discuss your medical needs with your health insurance provider as you pursue treatment for your injuries. You may need to ask questions about the type of coverage you have for physical therapy or durable medical equipment, or you may need more information about in-network versus out-of-network insurance providers.
A careful examination of your policy or a talk with your insurance representative can give you a better idea of what to expect as you pursue treatment for your injuries.
Pursue a Drunk Driving Accident Claim
While a drunk driving accident claim does not require the liable driver or their insurance company to take care of your medical costs directly, it can provide you with much-needed funds that help you cover those costs. A drunk driving accident claim usually gets paid directly to you. Then, you can use the funds from that claim to cover the cost of your medical treatment.
Does the bar or restaurant that served the driver that hit me bear any liability for my accident?
Some states have laws that hold the bar or restaurant that over-serves a patron that the servers know to drive away from the restaurant liable for any injuries caused by that driver while intoxicated. However, Florida dram shop law notes that the bar or restaurant serving a driver does not bear liability for that driver’s decisions behind the wheel.
A bar or restaurant may, however, bear liability for a drunk driving accident if the bar or restaurant knowingly serves an underage driver or knowingly serves a person with a known drinking problem. At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we may help examine the drinking habits of a driver that causes a serious drunk driving accident to get a better idea of whether you might have the right to pursue compensation from the bar or restaurant.
What should I do if I suspect the other driver who hit me of driving while intoxicated in Tallahassee?
If you suspect another driver of driving while intoxicated, you should mention your suspicions to the police at the time of the incident. Keep in mind that other conditions, including unmanaged diabetes or a head injury, can show many of the same symptoms as intoxication, especially at the accident scene. The police can perform a blood alcohol test, which may better assess the other party’s intoxication level.
If you do not report the other driver’s intoxication to the police, you may have a hard time proving the driver’s intoxication later, and evidence of intoxication may vanish. However, you can still establish that you deserve compensation for your injuries due to the driver’s negligent driving behavior. Discuss your concerns with the lawyers at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA.
We can help you determine how to establish the other driver’s liability for your accident and help you pursue the compensation you may deserve, even if you cannot establish intoxication at the time of the accident.
Does the drunk driver always bear full liability for the accident?
A drunk driver will often be liable for the dangerous actions of intoxication and driving. However, a drunk driver may not always bear sole liability for an accident, even if that accident occurred primarily due to the other driver’s intoxication. Other factors can contribute to a drunk driving accident.
For example, another driver might behave very recklessly, including trying to swerve around the drunk driver or force that driver off the road, which could lead to a dangerous collision. Furthermore, the drunk driver’s vehicle might fail, leaving the vehicle manufacturer partially responsible for the incident. In addition, you may discover that the bar or restaurant that served the drunk driver may bear liability for the accident if the driver has a known drinking problem and the bar or restaurant knew that he intended to get behind the wheel.
At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we take a comprehensive look at all factors that may have influenced a drunk driving accident, not just the intoxicated driver’s damaging behavior. By identifying all parties that share liability for your accident, you can often increase the compensation you recover for your injuries since you have the right to file an injury claim against each party that contributed to your accident.
Identifying the liable parties upfront can also help streamline your injury claim. Contact us for more information about what factors may have contributed to your Tallahassee drunk driving accident and what steps you may need to take to secure compensation and hold all liable parties responsible for their actions.
I received a settlement offer from the drunk driver’s insurance company. Should I take it?
Insurance companies know just how to make it tempting to accept a settlement offer, even if it does not reflect your full needs after a drunk driving accident. The insurance company may offer just enough compensation that you feel you should take it as soon as possible.
After all, you have medical bills to pay and other expenses to take care of while you recover from your injuries. You may not have time to wait for a larger settlement offer. The insurance company may even convince you that you do not have the right to any additional compensation or may pressure you to accept a “generous” offer fast before the company withdraws it.
Always have an attorney review your settlement offer before accepting any offer and signing away the rest of the compensation you could potentially recover. At Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we often see initial settlement offers that fail even to reflect the full extent of the medical bills a client may have faced after an accident.
Frequently, we have to fight to help the client recover the compensation they deserve. We can help look at your settlement offer, determine whether it represents how much really need and deserve for your injuries, and, if necessary, help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
How long does settling a drunk driving accident claim in Tallahassee take?
It can take months to settle a Tallahassee drunk driving accident claim. While the investigation begins, your lawyer may recommend that you wait until you have a chance to recover for several months before moving forward with your claim. You may need time for your doctors to give you a full, accurate idea of your long-term medical needs and what you will likely recover after your accident.
Next, you should expect it to take time for your attorney to help you negotiate a reasonable settlement, especially if you suffered severe injuries in your accident. Frequently, severe injuries require substantial compensation from the insurance company. The insurance company may fight to decrease its financial liability for your accident and injuries, while your attorney may fight to help you maximize the compensation you can recover for your injuries as much as possible.
Waiting out the negotiation process can help you feel more confident about the eventual resolution to your claim and the compensation you ultimately receive.
Will I have to go to court over a drunk driving accident claim in Tallahassee?
Most accident claims, including drunk driving accident claims, settle out of court. Going to court typically increases the legal costs associated with the claim and may make it take even longer to resolve your case. The insurance company will generally work with you to resolve your claim out of court if possible.
However, in some cases, you may need to go to court to get a reasonable resolution to your claim. An attorney can help guide you through when you should go to court to fight for the compensation you deserve, then represent you in court to help you maximize the compensation you can recover.