Following any kind of injurious car accident, police will strive to assign fault to one of the drivers. If one of the drivers is deemed to be intoxicated, then authorities will most likely fault that individual. In turn, the intoxicated driver will probably also be liable for injuries and other financial damages stemming from the incident.
The drunk driver might not always be liable for injuries, though. If a court determines that the driver’s state of intoxication did not cause the accident, and thereby did not proximately cause the injuries or other damages, then the DUI driver might not be liable. It’s important to note that the burden of proof to receive financial compensation will be on the plaintiff in these cases.
Here is what plaintiffs will have to establish if they want to receive compensation for their injuries following a DUI crash:
— Duty: You must establish that a duty existed. In the case of a drunk driving accident, that duty would be to follow traffic laws and refrain from drinking and driving.
— Breach of duty: Once the duty has been established, plaintiffs will need to show that a breach of the duty has occurred.
— Cause in fact: Plaintiffs must show that the driver’s state of intoxication actually caused their motor vehicle accident and injuries. For example, “cause in fact” would not exist if the drunk driver did not cause the accident.
— Proximate cause: This relates to whether the injuries and accident could have been foreseeable given the nature of the circumstances.
— Damages: In order to collect financial compensation, the plaintiff must show how he or she was injured.
Were you or a loved one injured or killed by a drunk driver in Virginia Beach? A personal injury lawyer can help you evaluate the viability of your potential claim for damages. Your lawyer can also help you pursue financial compensation for your injuries in court.
Source: FindLaw, “I Was Hit by a Drunk Driver: Who is Liable?,” accessed May 05, 2017