Drunk driving is a very real, and very unfortunate decision that many people make each day, putting themselves and many around them at serious risk of injury and even death. If you have been involved in an accident with a drunk driver, it is very important that you follow the steps that we list below in order to ensure that you maximize your chances of getting the money that you deserve when we seek compensation from their insurance company, or even them directly depending on the circumstances.
Contact the team at Timothy J. Ryan & Associates as soon as possible to schedule your initial consultation and get working on your legal case as soon as possible. We will work with you to take as much of the legal stress off your shoulders as possible so that you can focus on your recovery with the confidence that there is an experienced, aggressive attorney working on your behalf to build a comprehensive personal injury case. We will begin by working with the insurance company in an attempt to negotiate a settlement, but if we are unable to reach an agreement we will move directly to a lawsuit.
Read more below about what to do after an accident with a drunk driver.
What To Do After an Accident With a Drunk Driver
If you suspect that the driver you have been involved in an accident with is drunk or intoxicated on another drug, it is important that you report this information to the police and let them complete a full investigation. If the other driver has been drinking or doing drugs, and then chose to operate their motor vehicle and ultimately caused injuries and damages to you and your passengers, then they must be held accountable for actions, both criminally and civilly.
After you have made sure that you and your passengers are safe from any additional damage or hazards after the accident, contact the police or 911 as soon as possible so that they can secure the area and help the EMTs get to you and the other victims. If you have been injured, it is in your best interest to accept any treatment offered from the emergency responders. If you choose to not take an ambulance to the emergency room, it is still very important that you see a doctor as quickly as possible. This will establish a record of your injuries, as well as to make sure that you get the treatment you need to maximize your chances of a full recovery.
If possible, gather any eyewitness accounts, surveillance cameras, and any other information that will help to tell the entire story of the accident and the actions that led to this unfortunate incident. In addition, any police records, arrest reports, and the official accident report will also lend to your cause while you are working to make sure that it is clear how your injuries were caused by another's actions.
Working With an Insurance Company
When you first file your claim with the insurance company, you will be working directly with an agent who will take all of the issues of the accident into account before offering you a settlement amount. DO NOT accept this offer without consulting with an attorney. This amount will likely be nowhere near the amount that you are truly owed, but accepting it will block you from seeking any future damages, no matter how many more complications may arise.
Instead of dealing directly with the insurance company, we will handle any and all negotiations on your behalf. If we are unable to reach an agreement without a court case, then we will decide to move forward with a lawsuit in order to have the courts intervene.
Contact Timothy J. Ryan & Associates Today
Contact our Orange County car accident lawyers to get started on your case today. We will walk through every possible option with you, and ultimately determine the most appropriate steps to take in order to maximize your chances of getting the damages that you truly deserve. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we will be able to get started. California has a 2-year statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits, meaning that if you do not begin the process within 2 years of the accident, or within a year of when you first discovered your injury, then you will be unable to seek any compensation.