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You Can Trust Our Lawyers to Fight for Your Rights in Dallas Drunk Driving Injury Claims
About Drunk Driver Accident Injury Claims
Drunk drivers frequently injure and kill innocent victims as a result of the reckless decision to operate a motor vehicle while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If this situation applies to you, find out exactly how our Dallas drunk driving accident lawyers can help. There is never a fee unless we obtain a settlement for you. Call (214) 747-5240 now for a free consultation.
Our Dallas accident lawyers have been holding intoxicated drivers accountable for 39 years.
We devote substantial attention and significant resources to driving while intoxicated / driving under the influence injury cases and aggressively develop them to demonstrate the impact the event has had, and will continue to have, on your life.
Below you will find detailed information dealing specifically with impaired and drunk driver accident injury cases. We highly suggest you also visit our car accident injury claims page to learn even more information that will be applicable to your case.
General Information & FAQs about Dallas Drunk Driver Accident Injury Cases
Are you entitled to punitive damages if injured by a drunk driver in Texas?
In Texas, if you were injured, or a loved one was killed, by an impaired driver high on drugs, alcohol, or narcotic pain medication, you may be entitled to punitive damages, which are damages awarded to punish the guilty party which exceed basic compensation. As a result of the driver’s grossly negligent and/or reckless conduct, you may receive more than what is awarded in a typical auto collision injury settlement.
How do you establish the negligent driver was intoxicated or under the influence at the time of the accident?
You can establish the at-fault driver was operating his or her motor vehicle while intoxicated and/or under the influence of drugs or alcohol in a variety of ways. The easiest way, of course, is if the Investigating Officer arrested the at-fault driver at the scene of the accident on suspicion of DWI or DUI.
Remember: Even if criminal charges were dropped against the at-fault driver or the driver was found not-guilty in a criminal trial, you might still be entitled to an award of punitive damages. Criminal cases require a finding that the Defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt whereas civil trials only require a finding based on a preponderance of the evidence – i.e., more likely than not.
How Can Our Dallas Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys Help?
We have an in-house accident investigator who will quickly request and obtain a copy of the Texas Peace Officer’s Crash Report arising from your incident if one was completed. In addition, our accident investigator will submit an open records request to any applicable law enforcement agencies to obtain additional documents associated with the wreck, including officers’ notes and witness statements.
Our Dallas drunk driving accident attorneys will also monitor the progress of any criminal charges filed against the at-fault driver and seek to obtain documents associated with any guilty or “no contest” plea.
In addition, we will run a detailed background search on the drunk or impaired driver to determine his or her financial resources and to identify any prior criminal history, specifically prior arrests for driving while intoxicated or driving while under the influence.
If the police didn’t investigate the wreck is it impossible to prove the at-fault driver was drunk or high?
No. But it will be more difficult to do so, obviously. Your testimony alone can be used to establish the Defendant was drunk or otherwise impaired.
For example: If you witnessed the at-fault driver throwing beer cans out of their vehicle after the wreck, slurring their words, stumbling or having a difficult time standing due to intoxication, or any other observation suggesting the use of drugs or alcohol you would be allowed to testify to the observation(s). This would include the smell of alcohol on the at-fault party’s breath.
Remember: Establishing the at-fault driver was drunk or under the influence, if the Police did not come to the scene, is easier if an independent witness confirms your statements or offers his or her own statements demonstrating he or she believed the at-fault driver was intoxicated.
How Can Our Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Help?
Our private investigator will attempt to track down and interview any known witnesses who can testify to the at-fault driver’s words or actions following the Dallas accident. If possible he will have the witness complete an affidavit under oath. In addition, he has experience in canvassing areas to attempt to locate potential witnesses.
Setting Up Proper Insurance Claims After a Drunk Driving Accident
When should you file insurance claims in an injury case?
You should file insurance claims with all potential insurance carriers as soon as possible.
Remember: Generally, the quicker you file claims the sooner your car will be repaired or replaced.
What insurance claims should you file if you have been hurt in an accident with a drunk or impaired driver?
Here are some of the potential insurance claims you may file:
- Liability claim against the drunk or impaired driver (property damage as well as injury damages);
- Liability claim against the drunk or impaired driver’s employer if they were working at the time of the collision (property damage as well as injury damages);
- Liability claim against the owner of the at-fault motor vehicle if the owner negligently entrusted the vehicle to a drunk or otherwise impaired driver (property damage as well as injury damages);
- Uninsured motorist claim through your own automobile insurance carrier if the drunk driver or impaired driver did not have insurance;
- Underinsured motorist claim through your own automobile insurance carrier if your damages could be in excess of the drunk or impaired driver’s insurance limits; and
- Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) through your own automobile insurance carrier for reimbursement of medical expenses and wages you have lost due to the accident.
How Can Our Attorneys Help?
Our attorneys will file all necessary claims with potential insurance carriers at the onset of your Dallas drunk driver accident injury case.
Remember: You may be entitled to certain insurance coverage if you live in a household with someone who carries additional coverage beyond that contained in your own policy.
Vehicle Repair vs. Vehicle Replacement
We will assist you in making sure your car, motorcycle, or truck is replaced or repaired in a timely manner following the accident.
Should you take your car to the repair shop recommended by the drunk driver’s insurance carrier?
No way. Insurance carriers want your vehicle damage to be as low as possible. Exercise your right to take your car, motorcycle, or truck to the dealership or a repair shop of your choosing to obtain an estimate.
Are you entitled to a rental car if injured by a drunk or high driver?
Usually you are entitled to a rental car unless your vehicle has been “totaled” or deemed a “total loss.” If your car is totaled you are only entitled to recover the fair market value (FMV) of your car – though some carriers will pay for a rental vehicle until your automobile has been determined to be a “total loss”.
Remember: Filing a property damage claim with your own insurance company and requesting a rental vehicle (if you have that coverage) is sometimes the quickest way to get your car repaired or replaced. You will likely pay your deductible but should receive a refund of the deductible amount if the drunk driver’s insurance company eventually pays for the cost of repairs and/or the replacement value.
Securing a Law Loan
Can you get a loan against your injury claim if you were hurt by a drunk driver?
Most likely. Most law loan companies, however, require you to have an attorney to receive a loan against the eventual settlement proceeds of your personal injury claim.
How Can Our Lawyers in Dallas Help?
Our Dallas drunk driving injury attorneys work with all of the major law loan companies to help clients receive immediate financial assistance.
Securing Medical Treatment (At No Up-Front Cost) After a Dallas Drunk Driving Injury
Can you get medical treatment for your injuries even if you don’t have health insurance or can’t afford co-pays and deductibles?
Absolutely. We have established relationships with numerous medical providers who have all agreed to delay billing for their services until your Dallas drunk driver accident injury case settles.
We work with a number of orthopedic surgeons and even a neurosurgeon who are willing to forego payment for surgery until your drunk driving accident case concludes. Of course, available insurance proceeds must be established prior to the surgery. In addition, we work with anesthesiologists, surgical centers, surgical nurses, and hospitals who are also willing to forego payment until your claim settles.
What happens if a health insurance company pays a portion of your medical bills following the accident?
The health insurance company is generally entitled to be reimbursed if you recover funds from a negligent third-party. However, our attorneys can almost always convince the health insurance company to discount the amount of its lien.
Damages You May Be Able to Recover Against the Drunk Driver that Injured You in Texas
Available damages fall into two general categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages include recovery of your medical expenses, any reasonable and necessary future medical expenses, vehicle repair costs or the replacement value of your vehicle, diminished value of your vehicle, lost wages, and income you will lose in the future. Non-economic damages are not as readily ascertainable.
These damages include pain and suffering in the past and future, impairment in the past and future, and mental anguish in the past and future.
How Can Our Dallas Drunk Driving Injury Attorneys Help?
Our accident law firm has 39 years experience in evaluating personal injury cases. We seek to maximize your recovery and fully develop your damage model. Our attorneys will retain experts to establish both liability and damages if necessary.
For Example: In the past we have retained economists and vocational rehabilitation consultants to develop our clients’ claims for loss of earnings in the future. Our Dallas drunk driving lawyers have also retained life-care planners to estimate future medical costs as well as to evaluate the cost of any accommodations made necessary due to the accident with the drunk driver.
What additional damages can you potentially recover if the at-fault driver was driving while intoxicated or under the influence?
If you were injured by a drunk driver you may be entitled to punitive damages, which are designed to punish the drunk driver and can usually be recovered due to the drunk driver’s reckless or grossly negligent conduct.
Injury Cases Against Dallas Bars & Restaurants for Over-Serving Alcohol to a Driver
If you are injured in a motor vehicle collision with a drunk driver, or a loved one is killed, can you file a claim against a bar or restaurant if they over-served alcohol?
Yes. These claims, often referred to as “Dram Shop” cases, require you to demonstrate the bar or restaurant over-served alcohol to an obviously intoxicated individual.
Consultations Are Free. Talk To a Lawyer Today.
Call (214) 747-5240 for Help Now!
Mullen & Mullen Law Firm
1825 Market Center Blvd #200
Dallas, TX 75207
We will come to your home, office, or hospital room if it makes it easier on you!
No in-person meeting required. Virtual consultations and sign-ups are available.
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Shane V. Mullen is an attorney licensed by the State of Texas for the general practice of law, and the Managing Partner at Mullen & Mullen Law Firm in Dallas, TX. His firm focuses exclusively on personal injury law and has been in business for 40 years. Before becoming a lawyer, Shane worked for his father as an accident injury claims investigator.