Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys
Thousands of Cases Handled in Tacoma, Olympia, Lakewood, West Olympia, Puyallup & Federal Way
Accidents caused by impaired motorists frequently cause serious injuries and fatalities. Statistics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention show that drunk driving accidents cause approximately 700 injuries and 33 fatalities in the United States every day. If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a drunk driving accident, it is important to seek representation from an experienced car accident attorney. The Olympia drunk driving accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Harold D. Carr have provided skilled, personalized, and compassionate legal representation to injured clients since 1991.
Sources of Compensation
Victims of drunk driving accidents are often left with bills for surgery, medical care, and rehabilitation, all while being unable to work. The most obvious source of compensation is the drunk driver and his or her insurance company. Depending on the situation, you may be eligible to seek damages from other sources.
We help clients recover compensation from:
Our drunk driving accident attorneys in Olympia have the experience and resources needed to thoroughly investigate your case. As your advocate, we will locate all responsible parties to help you win the full compensation that you deserve for your hospital and medical bills, car repairs, and the wages that were lost as you recover from your injuries.
What to Do If You’re Hit by a Drunk Driver
After a drunk driving accident, you should try to do the following:
- Call 911: You should always call 911 after a car accident that causes a serious injury or extensive vehicular damage. Emergency responders can arrive to help control the scene and provide medical attention to anyone who needs it. If the driver is confirmed to be drunk, then the police can detain and arrest them, too.
- Check on everyone: If it is safe to do so, check on everyone who was involved in the accident to see if they have been seriously injured. Do not endanger yourself further, though. You should also not try to administer any first aid unless you are certified, and it is absolutely necessary.
- Move your vehicle if necessary: If your vehicle is drivable and safe to operate, then you should move it away from traffic to help prevent any subsequent car accidents. If you are uncertain if it is safe to drive your car, then you shouldn’t.
- Photograph the scene immediately: As soon as you can, start using your smartphone to take photographs and videos of the scene. Be sure to include shots of all vehicles, injuries, traffic conditions, and weather. You definitely want to get a picture of the other driver’s license plate first in case they try to flee the scene once they realize they have caused a drunk driving accident.
- See a doctor: Accept emergency medical attention from any EMTs who arrive at the scene. If you do not need emergency care, then you should still go to urgent care next in your day. Cancel whatever plans you have and go to the doctor for a checkup.
- Speak with an attorney: Once you have received medical care, you should start thinking about creating a claim against the drunk driver who hit you. Call (800) 520-6617 to talk to our drunk driving accident lawyers. Ideally, you will be able to reach out to us within 72 hours of your accident. If you call us the same day as your crash, then we can even help you with your initial report to your auto insurance company.
If you have already been in a drunk driving accident, then let our attorneys know if you were able to follow any of these steps. They can help us determine the best starting point for your case.
Drunk Driving Accidents with Pedestrians
Every drunk driving accident is tragic and dangerous. But there is a heightened potential of catastrophic injuries when a drunk driver hits someone who is not in a vehicle, too.
Our law firm can help with drunk driving accidents involving:
We can assist with highly complex cases with muddled liability and steep damages. For example, if a drunk driver crashes into an occupied structure and hits someone inside, then there could be additional questions about liability and damages. Let us assist you if you’ve been in a drunk driving accident as a pedestrian or cyclist.
Criminal Elements to a Drunk Driving Accident Case
A drunk driving accident case can be more complicated than a typical car accident case because of the added criminal element to the incident. The person who hit you should face criminal charges for driving while intoxicated. It is up to the State of Colorado and prosecutors to prove that the driver was drunk and should be convicted and sentenced.
The criminal proceedings against the driver who hit you are separate from any civil proceedings that you bring against them. But that does not mean they are completely unrelated. Our attorneys could potentially use evidence used in the criminal case against the driver in your claim or lawsuit. If the driver is convicted of driving while intoxicated (DWI), then the conviction itself could be what convinces the insurance company to concede and offer a fair settlement.
Washington Dram Shop Laws
The drunk driver who hit you might not be the only person who is liable for your damages. Washington has a set of laws that can place some liability on the party that gave the drunk driver their alcohol.
Two laws in Washington that can hold a third party liable are:
- Dram shop laws: A business that sells alcohol – like a bar, convenience store, restaurant, hotel, etc. – must not sell alcohol to a patron who is visibly intoxicated. If a business does sell alcohol to someone who is “apparently under the influence” and that person later causes a drunk driving accident, then the business could be held partially liable for the damages.
- Social host liability laws: A social host – like someone throwing a party at their home – can be held partially liable for damages caused by a minor who gets intoxicated at their event and then caused a car accident afterward. However, it must be proven that the social host provided alcohol to a minor who they knew was underage.
Get a Free Case Evaluation
We have been helping clients secure compensation in personal injury cases for three decades. Our team serves the needs of each client with personalized legal representation in English or Spanish, so all our clients can feel comfortable discussing their situations. The first step to getting the compensation you deserve is scheduling a free consultation with an attorney.
Give us a call today (800) 520-6617 to discuss your case with an Olympia drunk driving accident lawyer.
Drunk Driving Accident FAQ
What do you do if the drunk driver blames a sober passenger for the crash?
Pay attention to who gets out of the driver's seat after being in a car accident. Drunk drivers sometimes try to escape liability by saying that the soberest person in their car was driving. If you suspect any dishonesty, when the police show up, tell them right away about who you actually saw driving the car.
Why is drunk driving so dangerous?
Drunk driving is extremely dangerous because intoxication destroys a driver’s ability to safely drive. While intoxicated, a person will have greatly delayed reaction times, poor judgment when assessing speeds and distances, blurred vision, and worsened motor control.
Is there such a thing as “safe” buzzed driving?
It is impossible to drive safely while buzzed. All it takes is one alcoholic beverage to cause the average person to drive worse. Even after the most obvious effects of intoxication fade away, subtle disruptions caused to a person’s driving abilities can still last for hours. If the driver who hit you said they were “only buzzed,” then you should make a note of it because it could be an admission of liability.