Alabama Drunk Driving Accidents Lawyer
If you were injured in a car crash caused by a drunk driver or in some other alcohol-related accident, do not hesitate to contact an Alabama drunk driving accident lawyer at Belt & Bruner, P.C. We will thoroughly review your situation to determine your best legal options. You may have personal injury claim against the inebriated person and a separate claim against an individual or business for over-serving them.
Alcohol is not inherently bad. When it is imbibed responsibly, in moderation, there are rarely any issues. Few people are harmed when someone of age enjoys one or two beers or glasses of wine. However, alcohol becomes dangerous when ingested in large quantities or in an irresponsible manner. Not only does it have the potential to harm the drinker, but it places others at risk by impairing the drinker’s inhabitations, ability to think clearly, and physical capabilities. An intoxicated individual is more likely to cause a DUI accident with injuries, create another hazard, or even assault someone.
Contact us via our online form or call 205-933-1500 to schedule a time to talk.
Alabama Drunk Driving Accident Statistics
According to the Alabama Department of Transportation’s 2016 Crash Facts, a total of 5,989 drivers who caused crashes that year were cited for a DUI. Most of the drivers who caused an accident while under the influence of alcohol or drugs were between the ages of 25 and 29. The next most common age groups were 20 to 24 year olds, then 30 to 34 year olds. The drivers were predominantly men. Only 1,519 drivers who caused a DUI (DWI) accident were woman.
The fact that Alabama saw nearly 6,000 alcohol-related accidents in 2016 is a significant problem. These types of collisions are more likely to cause injuries and fatalities. There were 257 traffic fatalities with alcohol involved that year. Jefferson County had 94 total traffic fatalities with 17 related to alcohol. Only Mobile County had more alcohol-related traffic fatalities in 2016.
If you or a loved one was involved in an accident involving alcohol, our drunk driving accident lawyers can help you navigate the complexities of the case. We will investigate your situation and work to prove that you deserve compensation.
Injuries Sustained in Drunk Driving Accidents
If you were injured a DUI accident, then it is time to speak with a drunk driving accident lawyer at Belt & Bruner, P.C. Despite your being a responsible driver or passenger, someone took it upon themselves to drive while physically and cognitively impaired, putting you and others in harm’s way. The at-fault driver may walk away unscathed while you, your family members, or your friends suffer serious injuries.
Common drunk driving injuries include:
- Head injuries, including bruising and lacerations
- Neck and back injuries, including whiplash
- Brain injuries, such as a concussion or more serious traumatic brain injuries
- Chest injuries, such as broken ribs
- Spinal cord injuries, including a fully or partially severed spinal cord, which causes paralysis
- Leg injuries, such as bone fractures
Your Right to Damages After Suffering an Alcohol Injury
After being hit by a drunk driver who caused an accident after being improperly provided with alcohol, you are forced to recover from your physical injuries while grappling with myriad emotions in regard to the accident and intoxicated driver. You may be experiencing a great deal of anger and resentment. It is during this time that Belt & Bruner, P.C. is here to help. After decades of handling alcohol injury claims, we know the physical and psychological challenges you face. You should not have to handle the insurance or legal claim process as well.
We will help you bring an alcohol injury claim against the drunk driver. Through a personal injury claim, we will fight for you to receive compensation for:
- Medical costs
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Physical impairment
- Physical pain
- Mental anguish
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of use of property
Alcohol Injuries Resulting from Someone Being Over-Served
While it is legal for licensed establishments to sell alcohol to patrons, there is a limit on how much a business can serve. The limit is not an overall quantity. Instead, it is based on individual patron’s behavior. Bartenders, wait staff, and other business employees are responsible for noticing when someone has had too much. It is up to them to say they will no longer serve someone who is intoxicated. If they fail to stop providing someone with alcohol and that person, being over-served, causes a drunk driving or other alcohol-related accident, then the establishment that provided the alcohol may be liable. This is known as alcohol server liability and arises through Alabama’s Dram Shop Laws, Alabama Code §6-5-71.
Alcohol server liability also may arise when an individual serves alcohol to guests at their home or a private function. If someone throws a party and offers a large quantity of alcohol to their guests, with no supervision regarding how intoxicated guests become, then that host may become liable for injuries or fatalities a guest causes.
Alabama Dram Shop Laws
Ala. Code §6-5-71 states individuals injured by an intoxicated person have a legal claim against any person who sold, gave, or otherwise disposed of to another individual, any liquor or alcoholic beverages contrary to Alabama law. This can mean two things. First, the legal claim may arise because a person or establishment gave or sold alcohol to a minor. Second, the claim may come about because a person or establishment gave or sold alcohol to someone who was visibly intoxicated.
If the person who caused you harm was over-served or unlawfully served because they were underage, then you need to speak with an attorney. In addition to holding the intoxicated person responsible for your injuries, you may also have a legal claim against a restaurant, bar, convenience store, grocery or liquor store, stadium or entertainment venue, or private event.
Investigating Potential Alcohol Server Liability
Determining where and how the person who caused your injuries became intoxicated can be complicated. At Belt & Bruner, P.C., we are ready to undertake this investigation, as we have done many times before.
We will find out where the at-fault individual obtained the alcohol and whether there is evidence that the individual was over-served. We may gather evidence through the testimony of the at-fault individual, employees of relevant businesses, and eyewitnesses. For example, a convenience store employee may be able to testify that when the at-fault person purchased a six-pack of beer that night, they were having trouble walking and slurring their words.
We may also look for evidence of alcohol server liability through transactional documents, credit or debit card statements, or receipts. For instance, we may be able to show that the individual who caused you harm purchased an abundance of alcohol for themselves at one restaurant or purchased drinks at a number of bars and restaurants in an area before the accident.
Contact the Alabama Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers with Belt & Bruner, P.C. Today
There is no denying there is a close connection between alcohol and injuries. Individuals who choose to drink too much – and the people or establishments who choose to over-serve them – put people like you in danger. If that risk of danger becomes real, leaving you to recover from serious injuries, then you have the right to hold the inebriated person responsible for their actions. If they were unlawfully served, then liability extends to the person or business who over-served the at-fault individual and allowed for this to happen.
To learn more about your rights after being injured in a drunk driving or other alcohol-related accident, use our online contact form or call 205-933-1500 to schedule a free consultation. There is no risk in speaking with a drunk driving accident lawyer to determine your rights and legal options.