Does the Drunk Driver's Conviction Help Your Personal Injury Claim? - Reyes Browne Reilley Law

Author: Angel Reyes  

Frequently Asked Questions

After a run-in with an intoxicated driver, you will find yourself in a difficult situation between what to do with your injuries as well as their criminal case being involved. So, what does their conviction mean for you? The answer to this common question is not an easy one.

There are a few instances that make a difference when it comes to their conviction. Their conviction certainly will not hurt your chances of claiming recovery for personal injury by any means. However, there is much more to their conviction than you think.

Civil Cases vs. Criminal Court Cases

When someone has committed a crime, that person will face a criminal case in order to be punished for their actions. In this case, it would be the law of a DWI in Texas. In order to seek justice and financial compensation when one person’s actions have unjustly caused negative consequences on another, a civil case ensues.

Personal Injury Claim and Lawsuit Differences

When it comes down to your car accident and injuries that came from it, you need to consider your legal options. Whether or not your case goes to trial is determined by the situation at hand. Should you pursue a personal injury claim with the insurance company? You can also take legal action and file a personal injury lawsuit. They are both incredibly different things.

People often have misconceptions about a claim and lawsuit being interchangeable. This certainly is not the case. Both instances often involve lawyers. However, once a case has gone to court, it becomes a lawsuit instead of a claim.

Negotiating with an insurance company of a negligent party in order to receive compensation for damages as well as losses is a personal injury claim. Damages and losses can consist of medical bills, lost wages, or even pain and suffering. An individual that makes attempts to negotiate with the insurance company alone may lose money. However, when an individual brings in an attorney, they are more likely to receive their maximum personal injury claim settlement.

The insurance company can still make things difficult from there. Lawyers apply pressure on insurance companies in order to get them to negotiate in good faith for a fair amount.

In the Event of a Lawsuit:

Once the party pursuing a claim feels they are not receiving a fair negotiation process and they cannot reach an amount, they will file for a lawsuit. The individual filing a lawsuit is doing so in order to bring the at-fault party to the table in order to reach a fair settlement in court.

The eventual outcome of the civil case will have nothing to do with a criminal case. However, the outcome of a criminal case has effects on the civil case proceedings. A convicted party at fault in the case of an intoxicated driving case will prove the driver was acting negligent. Drinking and driving is a negligent offense and will only allow the jury presiding over a civil case more reason to vote in favor of the plaintiff.

How Negligence is Proven in Car Accidents

In order to receive a fair settlement or jury verdict as a plaintiff, you must prove some instances. You must prove that you were injured and sought treatment for the injury. Then you must prove that the other driver was acting negligent.

In order to prove a driver was acting negligent, you have two elements that come into play. In legal terms, “duty of care” and “breach of duty” must come in to play.

What this means is that the other driver had a duty to uphold. They must be driving safely on the roads in ordinance with traffic laws. Then they must stray from that duty in order to be considered negligent. Running a stoplight, driving under the influence, or even texting while driving. These are all proven negligent acts.

A personal injury attorney will work tirelessly to prove that negligence so you can receive the rightful compensation you deserve. Displaying how the at-fault party violated their duty of care, causing the plaintiff’s injuries is the only way a lawsuit can be won in a court of law.

Have You Been Injured By a Drunk Driver?

The knowledgeable car accident attorneys of the Reyes Browne Reilley law firm will pursue your damages and rightful compensation on your behalf. Trust the law firm that has been around for nearly three decades to go to work for you and your family when a drunk driver turned your world upside down. There is no fee unless we win your case and you don’t pay for the initial consultation either. Call us now at (214) 526-7900 or submit your information here for a case evaluation.

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