There is no excuse for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Every motorist is aware of the risk of severe injuries or death when they get behind the wheel while impaired. If your life has been significantly affected by the injuries you sustained in a collision with a drunk driver, you may have the right to compensation for your suffering.
Your Oklahoma City drunk driving accident attorney at BDIW Law can help you hold the drunk driver and other liable parties accountable to the fullest extent of the law. Contact our team for a free consultation today to learn more about how to deal with the insurance company, how to prove the defendant’s negligence and liability, and further discuss the value of your damages.
Liability for Drunk Driving Accidents in Oklahoma City
One of the most important tasks your drunk driving accident attorney in Oklahoma City, OK, will handle is figuring out who should be sued for your damages. Although you might think proving liability in a drunk driving accident claim is easy, this is not often the case. You may undoubtedly have grounds for legal action against the drunk driver, but you might be surprised to learn there are other parties who could share liability for your car accident damages as well.
Dram Shop Liability
First, let’s look at Oklahoma’s dram shop liability laws. Here, if an establishment that sells or serves alcohol, such as a package store, liquor store, or restaurant, serves alcohol to an individual who is already under the influence of drugs or alcohol, these dram shops can be held accountable.
For this reason, many nightclubs, bars, and restaurant facilities will refuse to sell alcohol to someone who is already intoxicated. If that party was to go on and cause a motor vehicle wreck with substantial injuries or death, the dram shop could be held accountable for the victim’s damages as well.
Holding the drunk driver accountable will also be a top priority. Every motorist understands the risks associated with drunk driving. If they choose to get behind the wheel while impaired, they violate their duty of care to you, your passengers, and other motorists on the roadways.
Social Host Liability
Oklahoma’s social host liability laws allow social hosts to be held accountable the same way dram shops are. Social host liability laws most frequently apply in instances where adults allow minors to consume alcohol. If those minors go on to operate a vehicle while intoxicated, the social hosts can be held accountable for the injuries a victim sustains and their resulting damages.
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How to Make the Liable Party Pay
Your drunk driving accident lawyer in Oklahoma City, OK, will evaluate the evidence in your case and determine what legal options are most suitable. Thankfully, in drunk driving accident claims, there are often multiple ways you can make the liable party pay.
You can start by filing a claim with their auto insurance provider. Whether you are filing a lawsuit against a social host, dram shop, or drunk driver, these parties should have insurance coverage. The drunk driver’s insurance company may attempt to fight back and argue that their coverage is non-existent when a driver is intoxicated. However, your attorney will work diligently to ensure they are held accountable for their obligations.
Still, filing a claim with the insurance company does not necessarily mean every loss will be covered. In fact, insurance settlements typically only cover compensation for property damages, medical expenses, and in some instances, loss of income. This does nothing for the other economic damages you suffered and the entirety of your non-economic damages.
For this reason, you should always be prepared to bring your drunk driving accident case to trial. Although no one wants to have to go to court, in the majority of circumstances, doing so gives you your best opportunity to recover maximum compensation.
Drunk Driving Accident Claim Deadlines in Oklahoma City
Whether you are filing a drunk driving accident claim with the insurance company or filing a lawsuit, there are specific deadlines you must be aware of. Insurance companies often place a 30-day deadline on the amount of time you have to get your claim filed.
However, the Oklahoma statute of limitations states your claim must be filed within two years of the accident. Unfortunately, if you miss either of these deadlines, the insurance company can deny your claim, and the court system can refuse to hear your case. If you hope to avoid having these laws negatively impact the outcome of your case, it is crucial to get your drunk driving accident attorney working on your claim as soon as possible.
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How an Oklahoma City Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Can Help
Having a drunk driving accident attorney handling the legal details of your case is an invaluable tool at your disposal. While you devote your time and energy towards healing from your injuries, your lawyer can work tirelessly to gather the evidence needed to win. Some of the top responsibilities we will take on when you hire us to advocate for your rights include:
- Thoroughly investigate the cause of your drunk driving accident
- Identifying all parties who contributed to the injuries you sustained
- Speaking with witnesses and gathering expert testimony
- Obtaining copies of the defendant’s chemical blood alcohol test results
- Identifying opportunities to file insurance claims and negotiating with profit-focused insurers
- Bringing your drunk driving accident claim to court when insurance settlements are not enough
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Meet with a Drunk Driving Accident Attorney in Oklahoma City Today
The individual or entity that caused your injuries should be held accountable for your damages and forced to pay. Although going up against a drunk driver can seem overwhelming while you are still recuperating from your injuries, when you have help from a dedicated Oklahoma City drunk driving accident attorney at BDIW Law, you do not need to worry about a thing.
When we take on your case, we do everything from start to finish so you can devote your time and energy to healing. Learn more about what to expect from your claim next when you contact our office for a free, no-obligation consultation. You can reach us through our quick contact form or by phone to get started as soon as today.
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