Houston DWI Car Accident Victim Injury Lawyer
Drivers and passengers injured in accidents involving driving while intoxicated (DWI) could face significant injuries. Many DWI accident victims do not survive the crash, and their families could be left with expensive medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. The Queenan Law Firm represents victims of DWI accidents in Houston and the surrounding areas, fighting to help victims and their families get compensation for the harm done to them.
For help with your potential DWI injury case, call our Houston DWI car accident victim injury lawyers at The Queenan Law Firm. Our lawyers fight to help victims of DWI accidents and other car crashes get compensation to cover their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other needs in the aftermath of a serious accident. For a free legal consultation on your case, call us today at (817) 476-1797.
Suing in Civil Court for a DWI Accident Injury in Houston
DWI is a common criminal charge for drivers who operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over .08%. If these drivers injure other people in car crashes, there might be additional criminal charges filed against them. However, these charges often punish the at-fault driver with jail time and fines instead of having them pay for the harm they caused and covering the victim’s needs. While criminal charges may involve restitution paid to the victim, this restitution is often not enough to cover your damages in full. You are often entitled under Texas law to file a civil lawsuit where you can hold the driver financially responsible for what they did and seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Even if the government files criminal charges against the driver who hit you or your loved one, you can still file a civil case. In many cases, evidence from the criminal case – such as BAC tests, police testimony, and accident reports – can help you build your case or can supply direct evidence in your civil claim. This helps prove the civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
In civil claims, the “burden of proof” is also lower. Instead of having to prove your case “beyond a reasonable doubt” to win, you only need to prove your case “by a preponderance of the evidence.” This means proving that it is more likely than not that the other driver was drunk and that that negligence caused your crash. Talk to a Houston personal injury lawyer about filing a civil case alongside any criminal charges and fighting to get the compensation you need.
Suing Bars and Restaurants for DWI Accidents in Houston Under Texas “Dram Shop” Laws
In many cases where the drunk driver who hit you was coming from a bar or restaurant, you can also sue the bar or restaurant as part of your car accident lawsuit. If the bar overserved the driver who hit you, they could share fault in your accident for getting the driver drunk in the first place. Under Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code § 2.02, bars and restaurants can be held responsible if they overserved an intoxicated patron to the point where they were a danger to themselves and others. This only applies in cases where the injuries were caused by the alcohol, which is an inherent part of the issue in DWI cases.
When you sue a bar or restaurant alongside a drunk driver, the court will apportion damages based on each party’s share of fault. The facts of your specific case will help a jury determine who shares what percentage of fault in causing the accident, and each party will be made to pay their fair share of your damages based on that percentage.
Damages for DWI Victims in Houston
When you sue for damages in a driving while intoxicated car accident case in Houston, you can file a claim for any damages that resulted from the accident. This includes obvious damages, such as damage to your vehicle and your medical expenses, but it also includes less obvious damages, such as lost wages and pain and suffering.
Proving your vehicle damage and medical bills is commonly done by producing bills and financial statements showing how much you were charged to repair or replace your vehicle and how much the hospital charged you for medical care. The damages for pain and suffering can also be proven through financial records, such as pay stubs and bank accounts that show how much money you missed because of your injuries.
Damages for pain and suffering are called “noneconomic damages” because they do not have the same clear connection with a price or value. However, pain and suffering damages can often make up a big part of a victim’s damages. Your lawyer can help prove what these damages are worth in your case by presenting evidence of how the injuries affected your life, what changes you had to make to cope, what activities you miss out on now, and how your attitude, mental health, and enjoyment of life were affected.
It is important to talk with a lawyer instead of accepting settlements for these damages. Your lawyer can calculate damages based on experience and various calculation methods to determine what your case should be worth, then determine whether any settlement offers are “worth it” or whether you should take your case to trial to get the compensation you need.
Our Houston DWI Car Accident Lawyers for Injury Victims Offer Free Consultations
After a serious DWI accident, it is vital that victims seek the medical care they need and talk to an attorney about their case. The Queenan Law Firm’s Houston DWI car accident victim injury lawyers represent the victims in DWI accidents, and we work to get them and their families compensation for the damages that the accident caused. For a free case consultation on your DWI accident injury case, call our personal injury lawyers today at (817) 476-1797.