Hit By A Drunk Driver?

By Peter DePaolis

Experienced Injury Attorneys Serving Victims of Drunk Drivers in Washington, D.C.


impaired driver's visionIt is an unfortunate reality that many drunk driving accidents severely injure and cause the wrongful death of innocent victims each year. Drunk driving is a criminal offense, and those convicted of driving while intoxicated (DWI) or driving under the influence (DUI) may face significant penalties.

However, these legal penalties and criminal punishments do not pay for the medical expenses and other damages suffered by victims of drunk driving accidents and their families. This is why the law allows victims of drunk driving accidents to file civil lawsuits against the responsible parties completely separate from criminal cases against drunk drivers for breaking the law.

For decades, the Washington, D.C. accident attorneys at Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP have represented victims dealing with serious injuries due to the negligent, reckless, or intentional acts of others in and around our law offices in Washington, D.C.; Fairfax, Virginia; and Greenbelt, Maryland. Through our legal work, we have achieved many sizeable settlements and verdicts for accident victims. We are highly recommended by our past clients for our commitment to gaining justice, doing whatever it takes to uphold their legal rights, and working to obtain the compensation they deserve.

Can I File a Lawsuit Against a Drunk Driver?

If you have been injured in a car accident due to another motorist being under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you can file a civil lawsuit against the drunk driver. If a family member passed away in a fatal car accident caused by a drunk driver, you may also be able to file civil charges.

It is important to know that the prosecutor or district attorney pursuing a criminal DUI or DWI case against a drunk driver does not represent the victim of a drunk driving accident. Prosecutors represent the state, and while they do a great service to the public, they do not pursue money damages on behalf of victims. This is why victims of drunk driving accidents need their own private, civil drunk driving accident attorneys working to uphold their legal rights.

Those hit by drunk drivers and their families should not wait for the criminal case against the drunk driver to conclude. You should contact a DUI accident attorney as soon as possible who can begin seeking recovery from the drunk driver on your behalf.

How Do I Prove a Driver in a Drunk Driving Accident Was Intoxicated?

The police report is a key piece of evidence when proving a driver was drunk at the time of the collision. Police officer and witness testimonies may also be used by your attorney to prove the driver was negligent. If the driver was arrested, a conviction for drunk driving by the prosecutor will strongly support your civil lawsuit.

However, even if a driver was under the legal limit for alcohol, if he or she was found “not guilty” for DUI or DWI or if the criminal charges are dismissed, the driver can still be held liable for damages in civil court.

Many methods exist for proving a driver acting negligently caused the accident. Our injury lawyers have experience handling drunk driving accident lawsuits across the DC Metropolitan area. We can guide you through the process of a civil suit against the drunk driver and work to make the process as stress-free as possible for you and your loved ones, whether the crash involves personal injury or the wrongful death of a family member as a result of a fatal drunk driving accident.

Find a Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer in Washington DC, Maryland or Virginia

Our drunk driving accident attorneys in DC provide free consultations to anyone dealing with the consequences of a devastating accident. Call our office today in Washington, D.C. at (202) 794-5416, in Maryland at (301) 719-2637 or in Virginia at (703) 844-3876. You can also fill out our free online case review form. Let us get started securing the justice you and your family deserve after a drunk driving accident.

About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.