Riverside Drunk Driving Lawyers
Despite numerous laws on the books and prevention efforts by advocacy groups, statistics show that drunk driving continues to be a problem throughout the country. Riverside is no exception. With heavy traffic in Riverside, including State Route 91 and Interstate 215, comes the possibility of additional drunk driving accidents.
When a driver chooses to get behind the wheel of a car or truck after having too much to drink, they and their insurance company may be responsible if an accident occurs, leading to injuries. Since many drunk driving accidents happen at high speeds, the injuries that accident victims suffer may be catastrophic and deadly.
If you or a person you love suffered injuries in a recent drunk driving accident, you should retain a skilled lawyer to represent you as early on in the process as possible. The experienced Riverside drunk driving lawyers at Bentley & More LLP can meet with you after your accident and determine whether you are eligible to file a personal injury claim.
If you are, we can assist you with every step of the claims filing and litigation process. Moreover, if your case must go to court, we can confidently represent you in all legal proceedings and advocate for the best possible monetary result for you.
Our legal team has a strong track record of success with settling and litigating drunk driving injury cases throughout California. Since our firm primarily handles catastrophic car accident cases, we have the resources to assist with severe injury matters. We take referrals from other firms that might not have the capacity to take on a case involving severe injuries or complex legal issues.
Let us meet with you and help you recover the monetary damages you deserve for your accident-related losses. For a free case evaluation and legal consultation with a Riverside drunk driving lawyer, please call us or contact us online for more information.
What Is the Legal Standard for DUI in California?
DUI stands for driving under the influence. A driver is legally under the influence of alcohol if breathalyzer evidence determines their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to be at least 0.08 percent when they drive.
This standard is applicable to passenger vehicle drivers. However, minor drivers who are under 21 years old, along with commercial vehicle drivers, must follow more stringent legal standards. Specifically, a commercial truck driver is under the influence if they have a BAC of 0.04 percent or higher at the time they drove their vehicle. In addition, a minor driver is under the influence if they have a BAC of at least 0.01 percent. Therefore, a zero-tolerance policy exists for minor drivers.
Drunk drivers who incur a conviction for DUI in criminal court may face numerous legal penalties and other consequences. Those penalties typically depend upon the amount of alcohol in the driver’s system and whether or not they caused a traffic accident due to their intoxication.
Convicted offenders may receive a period of probation, along with monetary fines and jail time. Moreover, if the drunk driver caused an accident, they or their insurance company may have to pay civil damages to the injured accident victim.
If you are the victim of a recent drunk driving accident, you should both know and understand your legal rights. The experienced Riverside drunk driving attorneys at Bentley & More LLP can explain all of your rights and options in clear and easy-to-understand terms, allowing you to make informed and intelligent decisions throughout your pending claim or lawsuit.
The Effects of Alcohol on a Driver’s Brain
Alcohol can significantly affect a driver’s brain and its ability to function while a driver is on the road. Alcohol is a depressant, and as such, it slows down the central nervous system’s ability to work correctly. Consequently, an impaired or intoxicated driver may experience delayed reaction time, limited concentration, and slowed reflexes. All of these negative symptoms may prevent a drunk driver from stopping in time to avoid a crash with another vehicle—or with a pedestrian.
Moreover, alcohol intoxication often produces physical symptoms, including nausea, dizziness, and blurred vision. When a drunk driver experiences any of these symptoms, they may fail to see a pedestrian in the vicinity of an approaching motor vehicle.
If you suffered injuries due to a drunk driver’s impairment, you should speak with the experienced Riverside drunk driving lawyers at Bentley & More LLP right away. Our legal team can comprehensively evaluate your potential claim and help you take the necessary legal action to pursue the monetary recovery you deserve.
What are Common Types of Drunk Driving Accidents?
The more alcohol a drunk driver has in their system, the higher their chances of causing a severe accident.
When a driver’s faculties become impaired due to alcohol intoxication, the driver may engage in:
- Road rage
- Unnecessarily tailgating other vehicles
- Aggressively weaving in and out of traffic
- Failing to use turn signals
- Failing to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and other cars at the appropriate times
- Swerving in and out of a traffic lane
- Failing to use rear view and side view mirrors when driving and backing up
Intoxicated drivers often cause:
- Rear-end crashes
- Head-on collisions that occur at high speeds
- T-bone or broadside accidents
- Sideswipe collisions
- Vehicle rollover accidents
If you sustained injuries in one of these accidents that a drunk driver caused, the experienced Riverside drunk driving attorneys at Bentley & More LLP can help. Our legal team can promptly begin investigating your accident circumstances and filing a claim with the appropriate insurance company on your behalf, seeking the financial damages you deserve.
How to Prove a Drunk Driving Accident Claim
Proving the legal elements of a drunk driving accident claim, especially by yourself, is a very daunting task. If you suffered injuries in a drunk driving collision, you should not anticipate any cooperation from the drunk driver’s insurance company. In fact, you should expect just the opposite.
Insurance companies are not in the business of helping accident victims or paying them fair monetary damages for their accident-related injuries.
Instead, settlement adjusters want to be finished with car accident claims as quickly as possible. They also want to settle their claims as cheaply as possible to save the insurance company money. After all, insurance companies only make money when they collect premium payments from insured individuals. They lose money when they have to pay out significant monetary settlements or jury verdicts in a personal injury case.
Our experienced legal team can help you prove the necessary legal elements to recover the monetary damages you deserve. First, we can help you establish that the other driver was, in fact, under the influence of alcohol while they operated their vehicle.
We can show this by obtaining a copy of the police report or, if necessary, retaining an accident reconstructionist to examine the accident circumstances and testify in your case. If the fault is apparent in the case, the drunk driver’s insurance company may stipulate—or concede—to liability. If the insurance company admits to liability, then you are no longer obligated to prove that element to recover monetary damages in your case.
We can also help you establish that the drunk driver’s intoxication caused your accident—and that you suffered one or more injuries in the accident. To establish medical causation, we can retain a medical expert to testify at a deposition or jury trial.
The medical expert can demonstrate that:
- You suffered one or more permanent injuries in your accident, and those injuries are unlikely to get better with the passage of time
- The accident was a direct cause of the injury or injuries you suffered, despite the fact that you may have suffered similar injuries in a previous accident—or due to a medical condition
Recovering Monetary Damages From a Drunk Driver’s Insurance Company
In drunk driving crashes, accident victims frequently suffer permanent injuries that are unlikely to get better over time. In some instances, these permanent injuries may require that an accident victim receive lifetime care, such as at a nursing home or assisted living facility, at an exorbitant cost. Severely injured accident victims might also have to take time off work to attend medical appointments and undergo medical procedures following their accident.
Common monetary damages that drunk driving accident victims can recover include compensation for their:
- Past medical expense
- Anticipated medical costs
- Loss of earning capacityLost income
- Out-of-pocket expenses related to the accident
- Mental distress and emotional anguish
- Past and future pain, suffering, and inconvenience
- Permanent disfigurement
- Lifetime care costs
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Loss of use of a body part
- Loss of spousal companionship
Our legal team will take the necessary measures to help you achieve the maximum monetary compensation available in your case. We can also help you make informed decisions and let you know whether it is a good idea to accept a particular settlement offer—or litigate your case through the California civil courts. While litigation is not necessary in every drunk driving accident case, we are ready to pursue a lawsuit when insurance companies treat you unfairly.
Speak With a Riverside Drunk Driving Lawyer About Your Case Today
If you or a person you care about suffered injuries in a recent drunk driving accident, you should take legal action right away. California car accident victims only have two years from their accident date to pursue the monetary damages they deserve through a claim or lawsuit. Absent specific circumstances, accident victims who file their claims belatedly will no longer be eligible to receive monetary damages. Therefore, you should act as quickly as possible after your drunk driving crash. Reach out to a Riverside personal injury lawyer.
Sometimes people think that their case is straightforward and they don’t need the assistance of an attorney. This is almost always a mistake.
At Bentley & More LLP, our knowledgeable legal team can file a lawsuit promptly and efficiently on your behalf—and well within the statute of limitations time frame. We can then set to work on pursuing the fair monetary damages you need, either through settlement or litigation. When you entrust us with your case, you can rest assured that we will advocate aggressively for you at all times.
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Bentley & More for the past 5-6 years. Their drive and compassion to earn great results for their clients is obvious to everyone who works with them.
I’m grateful for the opportunity to partner with the firm to help serve their clients.” – Nicole S. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
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Bentley & More LLP – Riverside Office
Phone: (949) 617-0938