These days, more than ever, there is no excuse for drunken driving. With the ever-increasing, affordable, ride sharing services like Lyft and Uber, there are more ways to safely enjoy a night out than ever before. Despite this, irresponsible drunk drivers still regularly cause death and destruction nationwide.
No matter your age or alcohol tolerance, consumption of alcoholic beverages affects your decision making, reaction time, and judgement skills. All three of these skills are required to safely operate a motor vehicle on Wisconsin’s roadways. When people ignore the law and drive drunk there can be consequences beyond just the associated criminal penalties. Nearly everyone knows someone who has personally been affected by drunk driving. Whether it is family, friends, or a member of your community, drunk driving’s catastrophic consequences are far-reaching, and often irreversible.
If you or a loved one is involved in an accident cause by a drunk or impaired driver, you may have a right to compensation. This compensation can address various losses that you have sustained as result of a drunk driver’s negligent actions. This includes, but is not limited to, payment of medical bills, compensation for lost wages, payment of property damage, and pain and suffering. In addition to the aforementioned, you may further be entitled to additional damages that are often characterized as “punitive damages.” Punitive damages may be awarded by the court to punish a drunk driver for their recklessness in choosing to operate a motor vehicle while drunk or inebriated. Our full staff of attorneys and paralegals have experience in achieving all forms of compensation that are related drunk driving accidents. When you or your family is impacted by the actions of a drunk driver, you want a legal team with the experience and skill to litigate your case.
Unfortunately, even in some cases of drunk driving, insurance companies are reluctant to pay you the compensation you deserve. Insurance companies will look for every reason not to pay, and will often only offer you a “nuisance value” on your case. All too frequently we have Wisconsinites call in and say, “I was struck by a drunk driver and the insurance company offered to pay my medical bills and $500 for my case. Is that a good deal?” If that sounds familiar, don’t hesitate to contact the Groth Law Firm. We will work with you during our free consultation to determine the true value of your case, and explain exactly how we’re going to fight for you to achieve what you are entitled to.
Insurance companies will fight every step of the way to hide the fact that their insured was drunk, or even minimize how much their intoxication effected their ability to drive. It is an unfortunate fact that insurance companies will do everything within their power to reduce their exposure and pay as little as possible to injured people. If you are struck by a drunk driver, the last thing you want to do is to argue with an insurance adjuster who is difficult to get ahold of, unsympathetic, and unwilling to pay you what you deserve. The Groth Law Firm ONLY represents injured people and their families. We know that it can be overwhelming to take on huge insurance companies alone.
Drunk driving accidents can also become further complicated by potential Dram Shop laws. In Wisconsin, and many other states, a bar, restaurant, or location serving alcohol can also be held liable in certain cases. For example, if a bar is found to have knowingly served alcohol to a minor and that individual goes on to cause an accident, there may be an additional action that can be brought against the bar. One of the primary reasons these laws exist are to incentivize bartenders and others to help keep our roads safe, and to not intentionally over-serve someone who could then cause a horrific accident.
In Wisconsin it is illegal for a driver over the age of 21 to operate a motor vehicle with a Blood/Breath Alcohol concentration of 0.08 or great. It is also illegal to drive under the influence of an intoxicant; while you have a detectable amount of a restricted controlled substance in your blood; or while under the influence of a control substance or any other drug. The State of Wisconsin Department of Transportation defines “under the influence” as when a driver’s ability to operate a motor is impaired. Additionally, “A person’s ability to operate a motor vehicle is impaired if he or she is less able to safely control the vehicle because of the consumption of alcohol or controlled substances.”
There are a range of penalties associated with drunk driving, and they can range from forfeiture and license revocation to spending multiple years imprisoned. Penalties are increased if the drunken driving results in death or injury. Despite the severity of these penalties, irresponsible drivers still make the reckless choice to operate their vehicle while under the influence.
Injuries from drunken driving accidents can be even more severe than typical motor vehicle accident collisions. Drunk drivers have a tendency to exhibit more risky and reckless behavior while on the road, and may even greatly exceed the speed limit. As a result, injuries from drunken driving accidents have the potential to be permanent, or effect you for the rest of your life. Insurance companies are aware of this, and often, they will quickly try to settle your case before you can properly plan for future care you might require. Sometimes, you may need additional surgeries years from the day of the accident. If the insurance company is only paying your existing medical bills, this future care would be wholly excluded. Whether it’s surgeries, injections, support hardware, or in-home care, the Groth Law Firm has helped thousands of clients cover every aspect of their case. If you, or someone you know has been the victim of a drunk driver’s careless actions, please call in today for a free consultation. At the Groth Law Firm, our staff of attorneys is available to speak day and night regarding your potential case.