St. Petersburg DUI Accident Attorneys
When someone has a few drinks and then gets behind the wheel of a car, they are not only endangering themselves but also everyone else on the road. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a DUI accident in Florida, you need to contact the experienced St. Petersburg DUI accident attorneys at Salter, Healy, Bassett & Rivera right away. We are dedicated to helping victims of DUI accidents recover full compensation for their injuries, along with bringing the negligent party to justice. Contact our office today to schedule a free consultation and case review.
DUI Laws in Florida
Impaired driving greatly increases the likelihood of a car accident. This is especially true in the state of Florida, which has a higher rate of DUI-related fatalities than the national average. In Florida, if you have a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher, you will be charged with a DUI. Drivers under the age of 21 will be arrested if their BAC is higher than .02%. All Florida drivers who are lawfully arrested for a DUI must consent to chemical testing of their breath, blood, or urine to legally determine the amount of alcohol or drugs in their system. If a driver refuses a breathalyzer, their license will be suspended, and that refusal can be used as evidence against them in court.
After a DUI Accident
The injuries that result from a DUI accident are often severe and can be life-threatening. After being injured in a DUI accident, it is important to get to a safe location and call 9-1-1 right away. Your health and safety should be your top priority immediately after a crash. Even if your injuries don’t feel severe, it is very important to receive medical treatment as soon as possible. Not seeing a doctor will ultimately hurt your claim and decrease your chances of recovering compensation.
If you are physically able, you will want to document evidence at the crash scene. This includes the full names and contact information of the parties involved, details of the vehicles, circumstances of the accident (weather, location, time of day, etc.), signs of intoxication, and any other important details that can indicate who was responsible. Take photos of the scene and collect witness statements, if possible. This information can be used when filing a lawsuit or insurance claim against the negligent parties.
Florida Dram Shop Laws
The statute of limitations for a car accident victim to file a personal injury claim in Florida is four years from the date of the accident. Likewise, a victim of a DUI accident can also file a lawsuit against the bar or establishment that served alcohol to the drunk driver. Under Florida law, an establishment can only be held liable for a DUI accident if alcohol is served to a “habitually addicted” person or a minor. The statute of limitations for filing a dram shop claim is also four years from the date of the accident.
When filing an injury claim, it is important to act fast. If you ask an attorney to help you when you only have a week left of your statute of limitations, they may have to turn you away. It takes time to build a strong case and you want to be able to give your attorney as much time as possible. Contact our St. Petersburg DUI accident attorneys to handle your case as soon as possible.
Do Not Speak to an Insurance Company
Shortly after your accident, it is nearly guaranteed that you will receive a call from the insurance company of the other driver involved in the accident. They will want to get a recorded statement from you, but you need to know that it will not help your case if you give them one. In fact, it will most likely harm your case if you talk to them. You have no legal obligation to talk to them and you should let your attorney take over all communication as to avoid any reduction to your compensation.
Our attorneys work hard to recover full compensation for our clients. Whether through a settlement negotiation or at trial, our St. Petersburg DUI accident attorneys can help you recover compensation for medical bills, vehicle repairs, pain and suffering, punitive damages, and reimbursement of lost wages.
If a family member or loved one has died in a DUI accident, we can also file a wrongful death claim on the decedent’s behalf to help ease the family’s suffering through this difficult time. No one should have to go through this tragedy, and our experienced attorneys will be there to guide you every step of the way.
Contact Our Office for a Free Consultation
If you have been seriously injured in a DUI accident in the state of Florida, please contact our St. Petersburg DUI Accident attorneys today to schedule a free consultation. Our proven trial lawyers will do whatever it takes to get you justice. Call our office or contact us online to arrange a free case review. Let our experience and dedication work for you.