DUI Accident Lawyers Fort Lauderdale
DUI Accident Attorneys Aggressively Represent Injured Clients in Palm Beach County, Broward County, and Throughout Florida
DUI accidents are all too common in Florida, where drunk driving fatalities account for nearly 30 percent of all total traffic deaths every year. On top of our drunk driving problem, accidents caused by drugged driving have become increasingly common in our state, with many drivers operating vehicles under the influence of illicit drugs and prescription pills.
Whether a driver is impaired by alcohol, drugs, or any other substance, intoxicated driving leads to devastating, often fatal accidents. Intoxicated drivers have been known to collide into vehicles, swerve into bike lanes, and veer onto sidewalks.
Driving drunk or drugged isn’t only dangerous—it’s a criminal offense. Florida law provides extensive rights for the victims of DUI injuries and accidents. If you or someone you care about has been a victim of a drunk driving accident, you can protect your rights by hiring an experienced auto accident attorney. While you can’t undo a tragic DUI accident, you can pursue support for recovery costs and hold the reckless driver accountable for their grievous wrong.
At Lawlor, White & Murphy, our attorneys have protected countless Florida families who have been victimized in DUI accidents. We believe drunk and intoxicated driving should never be tolerated, and are committed to combatting this problem in our South Florida community and beyond. With one of our experienced and compassionate attorneys on your side, you can seek justice for the wrong and compensation for your suffering, while raising awareness to this devastating issue facing our state.
Florida DUI Laws
In Florida, drivers with a blood-alcohol level of .08 or higher are above the legal limit. Drunk driving is a third-degree felony and punishable by incarceration, steep fines, and license revocation. And if a driver causes harm or injury in a DUI accident, the driver may be subject to civil liability for punitive damages.
A DUI case may involve two parts in our state—the criminal aspect, and the personal injury claim. If you have been injured in an accident caused by a drunk or drugged driver, you may be entitled to a monetary settlement that could include punitive damages. The driver violated the law by driving while over the legal limit, so the accident may be held to a higher standard of liability than other types of crashes.
Exhausted from the emotional and physical toll of a traumatic DUI accident? You may not be feeling up to pursuing a personal injury case. However, it’s essential to do so if you want to be able to support medical treatments and recovery costs for you and your family. While the criminal justice system will prosecute the drunk driver for breaking the law, it falls on the victim to file an injury claim in civil court in order to secure reparation for injuries and losses. An attorney can be a supportive and powerful ally during this time, helping you hold the intoxicated driver accountable while securing support for your family’s healing.
The attorneys at Lawlor, White & Murphey are dedicated to helping DUI accident victims and their families, fearlessly working to protect their rights and defend justice. We will fight for you and your family’s right to health and happiness while you focus on recovery.
How a Florida Injury Attorney Can Help You and Your Family
The laws surrounding DUI laws are complex, and trying to navigate them on your own can be a nightmare. Instead of resting, recovering, and spending time with your family, you may find yourself thrown into a mess of paperwork, phone calls, and medical bills.
After sustaining a traumatic injury in an accident, DUI victims should be spared the hassle, stress, and frustration of seeking justice. That’s where an attorney can help.
As you focus on recovery, an attorney can file a claim for you as the basis for both your insurance claim and potential lawsuit. Your attorney will handle the insurance companies, while investigating and gathering information about your accident.
Below, we’ve listed some of the main steps an attorney will take to prepare your DUI accident case.
Collect police evidence. A good attorney will have a strong working relationship with local law enforcement officials, who are likely to have a wealth of information and evidence regarding the incident. Your attorney may connect with law enforcement offices to secure police reports, police car videos of the scene, and photographs.
Locate witnesses. Your attorney may also seek out credible witnesses to the accidents to gather statements, as well as authorities and experts who can offer up opinions and facts to support your case in court.
Obtain test results. Your lawyer can gather any available test results, including breathalyzer results and blood and urine test results.
Investigate the driver. Your attorney may also be able to find information on whether the driver was taking medications, and whether they have a history of drug or alcohol abuse.
Obtain medical records. An attorney may also be able to obtain medical records that demonstrate the severity of the injuries you or your loved one suffered.
Lawlor, White & Murphey Are Here for DUI Accident Victims in South Florida
At Lawlor, White & Murphey, our attorneys have the resources, connections, and experience necessary to investigate your DUI accident case, and the compassion, drive, and determination necessary to defend your rights.
The destruction caused by a DUI accident can turn you and your family’s life upside down—but it does not have to. With the help of our top attorneys, you can ease the recovery process and obtain support for medical bills, lost wages, and overall pain and suffering. Our attorneys will pursue justice on your behalf through research, dedication, and perseverance. Together, we can make sure your family is cared for while keeping drunk and drugged driving from further endangering Florida roadways.
Start fighting for public safety and your family’s rights today by filling out our online contact form, or calling us.
DUI Accidents Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
If you have been involved in a DUI accident, it is important that you first ensure that everyone involved in the accident is okay and has medical attention if they require it. After that, you should try to collect photographs and other evidence from the accident scene. You should also seek medical attention for your own injuries following the accident; this will ensure that your injuries are identified and connected to your accident. Finally, it is advisable that you speak with an experienced DUI accident attorney, who can help you understand your legal rights and options and work with you to pursue a claim for compensation.
Although a driver’s intoxication is usually strong evidence that the driver was negligent and responsible for the accident, it is not necessarily the case that a drunk driver was at fault in an accident. Instead, the drunk driver’s breach of the duty of care (by being intoxicated) must the be direct and proximate cause of the accident. It is entirely possible that another driver’s negligent behavior is the direct and proximate cause of an accident.
DUI and aggravated DUI refer to different levels of a driver’s intoxication. If a driver has a blood alcohol content above 0.08, they are legally considered to be driving under the influence. However, if a driver has a BAC above 0.15, it is considered aggravated DUI. Aggravated DUI can also mean that a drunk driver had children in his or her vehicle, had a suspended or revoked driver’s license, is a repeat DUI offender, seriously or fatally injured another person, drove in excess of 30 mph above the posted speed limit or drove in a criminally reckless manner. Aggravated DUI carries much more severe penalties than DUI.
Maybe not. While an insurance policy provides coverage if a driver operates his or her vehicle in a negligent manner, it does not provide coverage for intentional conduct. An insurance company may try to argue that a driver who gets behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol or drugs has intentionally put himself or herself in a position where he or she is at risk for injury. However, if the accident was caused by another driver, even if you were driving under the influence, your insurance company may provide coverage.
If you decide to drive under the influence without auto insurance, you could be subject to penalties, in addition to the criminal penalties for driving under the influence, for lacking insurance, including fines and license suspension. If you try to buy car insurance thereafter, it will likely be very expensive due to the fact that you will be required to submit proof of insurance to the state as you will be deemed a high-risk driver.
The length of time that it takes to resolve a DUI accident case depends on several factors, including whether the parties contest liability for the accident or the amount of damages that the injured party has incurred. Resolving a case can be particularly difficult if the injured party has medical treatments that will continue for a long time. While a case can be resolved in as little as a few months, if it is necessary for a case to go all the way to trial, it can take as many as a few years to fully resolve a DUI accident case.
Potentially. Florida is a “no-fault” insurance state. This means that if you are injured in a motor vehicle accident, you are required to first look to your own insurance policy’s personal injury protection coverage for compensation. You can only file a lawsuit against an at-fault driver for a motor vehicle accident if you have suffered a “serious bodily injury”. An injury is generally considered a “serious bodily injury” if it results in disability, scarring, or disfigurement.
If you have been involved in a DUI accident, it is important that you have a DUI accident attorney. DUI accidents are different from other motor vehicle accidents due to the fact that one of the drivers involved was breaking the law at the time of the accident by driving under the influence. While the driver who was under the influence is often at fault for the accident, that is not always the case. An experienced DUI accident attorney will ensure that the at-fault driver is properly identified and that your rights are properly protected and enforced throughout the entire claims process.
When you need an attorney to represent you in your DUI accident in South Florida, you have many law firms to choose from. You know you have found the right DUI accident attorney when you have a law firm with experience successfully pursuing compensation for victims of DUI accidents. The right DUI accident attorney has a demonstrated track record of knowledge of Florida’s DUI law and negligence laws. And finally, the right DUI accident attorney will provide you with dedicated, focused client service, ensuring that you know that your case is important to your attorney.
In many cases, it is possible to hire a DUI accident attorney on a “contingency” basis. This means that you will not have to pay your attorney anything unless and until your attorney is able to recover compensation for you. The fee you will pay to your attorney will be an agreed-upon percentage of the recovery that your attorney obtains for you.