Fort Lauderdale DUI Accident Attorney
Helping victims hold drunk drivers responsible for their injuries
Drunk driving is a significant threat to public safety. Though most people are aware of the extreme dangers of impaired driving, advocacy organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) reports1 that, in 2013 alone, an estimated 290,000 people suffered injuries and 10,076 people died as a result of DUI crashes. Ft Lauderdale DUI accident attorney Joseph J. LoRusso firmly believes that drunk drivers should be held accountable for the damage and injuries they cause and any victims of drunk driving accidents should contact his office for help as soon as possible.
Negligence per se
Driving under the influence (DUI) is against the law2 and anyone who gets caught doing so will likely be arrested and will face criminal charges. If a drunk driver causes an accident and injuries, however, they may likely also face a personal injury claim in civil court filed by injured victims. If a driver is convicted of DUI, the conviction may make a subsequent personal injury case simpler due to the legal doctrine of “negligence per se.”
Under negligence per se, the negligence of another party can be proven by the mere showing that the party violated a statute or law. This means that no other evidence besides a DUI conviction would be necessary to prove negligence in your DUI accident case. This can make it easier for you to prevail in your claim and receive the compensation you deserve.
Third party liability
Many states have “dram shop” laws that allow injured victims to hold the restaurants, bars, or other establishments that served an intoxicated individual liable for the injuries the individual caused after leaving the establishment. Florida law,3 however, does not hold third parties selling alcohol accountable unless one of two exceptions applies:
- The person supplied with alcohol was under the legal drinking age of 21; or
- The person was known to be “habitually addicted” to any type of alcohol.
In both situations, the person serving the alcohol must be aware of the circumstances. Though these cases are relatively rare, if an underage or habitually addicted drinker causes an accident and your injuries, you may be able to hold the establishment that served them liable as well.
An experienced Fort Lauderdale DUI accident lawyer can assist you
If you have suffered injury at the hands of a drunk driver, you deserve to hold that driver accountable for their actions and liable for all of your losses that resulted from the accident. DUI accident cases often involve complex legal issues and you should, therefore, always have an attorney representing you who understands these potential issues. Drunk driving victims can receive compensation for lost income, medical expenses, property damage, and much more. Additionally, drunk driving cases often involve an award of punitive damages, which are meant to punish the drunk driver for their outrageously reckless and unlawful behavior.
South Florida attorney Joseph J. LoRusso has extensive experience assisting clients file successful DUI accident claims in Fort Lauderdale and its surrounding areas. Please feel free to fill out our online contact form or call (954) 715-3260 to schedule a free consultation today.