Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs is illegal, but it is one of the most commonly prosecuted crimes in Florida and a leading cause of serious accidents. If you or a family member recently suffered injuries because of an accident an intoxicated driver caused, a Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer is the ideal asset to have on your side. They can help determine your most viable options for recovering your damages.
When you believe another driver is responsible for causing your recent accident because they were intoxicated behind the wheel, it is vital to speak with an experienced Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer — drunk driving auto accidents. Such accidents tend to result in worse damages than standard accidents caused by negligence, and the at-fault driver faces criminal prosecution from the state along with civil liability for the victim’s damages.
DUI consistently ranks as a leading cause of serious accidents. In 2022, these accidents accounted for more than 3,000 injuries and more than 400 fatalities. Lakeland has the second-highest DUI fatality rate of any city in the state, with about 6.5 fatalities per 100,000 residents each year. State Road 37, also known as Florida Avenue, is commonly cited as one of the most dangerous hotspots for DUI crashes in the Lakeland area.
The Santini Law Firm can provide the compassionate legal counsel you need on your side after experiencing a DUI accident. The state enforces a no-fault rule for car accidents, meaning drivers are required to use their own insurance after an accident regardless of fault. However, there are exceptions to this rule, such as when an injured driver’s damages exceed the extent of their insurance coverage.
Our team has years of experience helping many past clients in the Lakeland area with all types of vehicle accident claims, including DUI accident cases. We know you likely have many pressing legal questions in this situation, and our goal is to help you approach the recovery process with confidence. You have a limited time in which to file a personal injury case and an even shorter time to file your auto accident claim, so it is vital to reach out to our team as soon as possible.
The state’s no-fault rule for car accidents requires every driver to have their own personal injury protection coverage with their auto insurance. When an accident occurs, a driver files a claim against their own policy to recover their losses. For most minor accidents, this insurance can cover the victim’s damages. However, DUI accidents tend to result in severe injuries, and the total cost of a DUI accident can easily exceed the scope of the victim’s insurance coverage.
Your Lakeland personal injury lawyer can help file your auto insurance claim and resolve any problems you encounter with the insurance company. The Santini Law Firm has confronted many insurance carriers on behalf of our clients in the Lakeland area, and we know the tactics they often use to try to avoid liability and minimize claim payouts. After we help you secure as much as possible from insurance, we’ll help build a civil suit against the driver who hit you.
A personal injury claim is likely to be your most effective legal vehicle to recover compensation for your damages after a DUI driver has injured you in Lakeland. Proving fault will be a relatively straightforward process, and your attorney can help secure a copy of the police report for your accident and other evidence to firmly establish liability. The state will handle the prosecution of the at-fault driver for breaking Florida’s DUI laws.
Your personal injury claim can help you recover compensation for the damages that your auto insurance cannot provide. Under the state’s personal injury laws, the plaintiff has the right to seek compensation for:
In addition to these damages, a plaintiff could also receive additional compensation in the form of restitution or punitive damages. Whenever a defendant has broken the law in causing a personal injury, the fact that they injured another person will enhance their penalties in criminal court. Conversely, the fact that they caused the injury through an illegal act will enhance their liability for the victim’s civil damages.
The right attorney is an invaluable asset for any vehicle accident claim in Lakeland, especially one as complex as your DUI accident case is likely to be. Your Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer can help firmly establish liability for your accident and prove causation for all your losses, ensuring the defendant is held appropriately accountable for the harm they have done.
Our firm can help file your auto insurance claim, resolve any issues you encounter with the insurance company, and then help build a personal injury claim so you can recover all your remaining losses. You have a limited time in which to pursue your recovery, so it is vital that you reach out to a Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer as soon as possible after your accident. The more time your attorney has to work on your case, the more likely you are to succeed.
A: If you are arrested for DUI, you have only 10 days to attempt to save your license. You will be able to use your ticket as a temporary business-only license during these 10 days, and once the 10 days are over, your license will be either suspended, revoked, or reinstated, depending on your situation. You can request an administrative hearing or apply for a longer-term business-only license within this timeframe.
A: The suspension period you will face for a DUI depends on the severity of the offense and whether you have been convicted of previous DUIs. A first-time offense that did not involve injury usually results in 180 days to one year of license suspension. A first-time offense with injury results in an immediate three-year suspension of your license. A second offense within five years of the first results in a five-year suspension.
A: Your Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer can help you pursue accountability from the driver who hit you and secure compensation for your damages. You will be able to claim compensation through your own auto insurance policy following the accident, but the DUI driver will be liable for all damages that your insurance cannot cover. It’s possible to recover compensation for property damage, medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.
A: The driver who caused your recent accident faces liability for any damages they inflicted that your auto insurance cannot cover, as well as criminal prosecution from the state for breaking Florida’s DUI laws. Any DUI accident resulting in injury automatically leads to harsher penalties, including a longer driver’s license suspension, heavier fines, and longer incarceration. Your attorney can explain the potential impact of the driver’s prosecution on your recovery.
A: The Santini Law Firm can provide the legal counsel you need in Lakeland without adding to your financial concerns. We take all auto accident cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you only pay a percentage of your final case award as our fee, and only if we win. We get paid only if you get paid, so there is no fee at all if we are unable to obtain a case award for you. This ensures the legal counsel you need is accessible when you need it most.
The team at the Santini Law Firm has helped many past clients with a wide range of complex vehicle accident claims, including those resulting from DUI accidents. The state’s no-fault rule does not necessarily prevent you from seeking compensation from the driver who caused your accident, and we can help ensure accountability for your damages. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a Lakeland DUI car accident lawyer you can trust.
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