The decision to get behind the wheel of a car while impaired by alcohol or drugs almost always ends in catastrophe. Even if you are driving safely and following the rules of the road, your commute can abruptly be halted by the negligence of an intoxicated driver. Alcohol severely impairs the senses and makes reacting to an accident in a timely manner almost impossible.
A drunk driving accident can cause serious harm and result in expensive medical bills, pain and suffering, mental and emotional anguish, lost wages, and pricey property damage. Nobody should have to suffer needlessly due to the blatant recklessness of another driver. If you have been injured due to an intoxicated driver’s negligence, you are owed compensation for your damages, and the Law Office of Shane McClelland can help.
Texas Law on Driving Drunk
In Texas, the Department of Transportation explains that “[y]ou are legally intoxicated in Texas when your blood alcohol concentration reaches 0.08 percent, but you are breaking the law as soon as drugs or alcohol affect your driving — or flying or boating — ability.” Getting behind the wheel while intoxicated can not only have devastating and life-changing consequences for people injured in a car wreck, but they also can have serious criminal consequences, including fines and potentially incarceration.
Texas also currently allows victims of drunk driving accidents to hold bars, restaurants, and other establishments liable for overserving their patrons. Known as the Texas Dram Shop Act, this law puts a responsibility on any establishment serving alcohol to regulate their customers and not serve alcohol to any people who are showing clear signs of intoxication. This can include acting belligerent, slurring your words, noticeably stumbling, and more. Holding an establishment liable for your injuries related to a drunk driving accident is complex and requires an attorney with extensive knowledge of Texas’s laws.
Your Legal Options After a Drunk Driving Accident
After an accident with a drunk driver, you are entitled to financial compensation. An attorney can help you take legal recourse, starting with the following legal actions:
Filing a Personal Injury Claim
A personal injury claim can be filed with the at-fault party’s insurance to recover damages and bring you one step closer to a resolution. If the insurance company does not offer a fair settlement, then you must get your personal injury lawsuit on file within two years of the date of the accident according to Texas’s statute of limitations. Your claim and lawsuit should properly represent the facts of your case, the other driver’s fault, and the full extent of your losses, including medical expenses, future expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Your attorney can help ensure your claim or lawsuit is filed on time and contains everything necessary to thoroughly demonstrate the at-fault driver’s intoxication directly caused the accident, and your injuries.
Your personal injury claim entitles you to recover compensation for your damages caused by the at-fault driver’s recklessness. This can include compensation for the following losses:
- Economic damages: Economic damages are there for your tangible losses, such as property damage, medical bills, lost wages, physical therapy, and more.
- Non-economic damages: Falling victim to the recklessness of a drunk driver can result in physical pain and suffering and mental and emotional trauma, which non-economic damages can help compensate. Examples of these damages include physical pain and suffering, mental or emotional pain or anguish, loss of consortium, disfigurement, physical impairment, loss of companionship and society, inconvenience, loss of enjoyment of life, injury to reputation, and all other nonpecuniary losses of any kind other than exemplary damages (as defined in the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code).
Punitive damages may also be awarded in cases where you are able to demonstrate your accident was a direct result of gross negligence. Driving while intoxicated can be considered wanton and a reckless disregard for the safety of others, especially if the driver has a history of DUIs.
How a Dedicated Drunk Driving Accident Attorney Can Help
While you concentrate on healing and recovering after your accident, the team at the Law Office of Shane McClelland can get to work handling the important and time-sensitive aspects of your case. This includes investigating the facts of the accident and all of your damages. They will also collect and analyze any potentially relevant evidence, using expert testimony when necessary, and handling all negotiations with the insurance company.
Partnering with an attorney gives you the best possible opportunity at a settlement worthy of your losses. They can help you establish liability and hold the responsible party accountable for their decision to drive while intoxicated. If the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, then we are prepared to file a lawsuit on your behalf and take your case to trial. A significant benefit of hiring the Law Office of Shane McClelland for your car accident case is that we only get paid if you recover financially because of your claim or lawsuit. If we do not recover any money, then you owe us nothing. This is called a contingency fee.
Schedule a Free Consultation Today
For nearly two decades, Shane McClelland of the Law Office of Shane McClelland has been dedicated to providing a distinct and individualized approach to representing personal injury clients involved in car accidents. We understand the overwhelming nature of car accidents involving drunk drivers, and we are committed to standing by your side throughout the entire journey. Let us handle the legal aspects of your case, allowing you to concentrate on your own recovery.
To explore how we can best serve you today and determine your unique best course of action moving forward, please don’t hesitate to schedule a free consultation by calling (713) 987-7107 or using our online contact form.