DUI Attorney in Nashville810 Broadway, Suite 105
Nashville, TN 37203
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Nashville DUI Lawyer
As one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S., Nashville definitely has busy roads. Add a driver under the influence to the already busy traffic, and devastating consequences can occur. Getting hurt in a DUI accident in Nashville can put your life and career on hold with long-lasting physical, emotional, and financial consequences. However, if another person made the reckless decision to get behind the wheel while intoxicated and hurt you, you deserve compensation.
Don’t worry about having to figure this out on your own. Our determined Nashville DUI lawyers know what you are going through and can help you get justice. Morgan & Morgan is committed to helping victims of DUI accidents recover what they need to rebuild their lives. Discover your options and next best steps today, and contact us for a free, no-obligation case review.
What Qualifies as a DUI Accident in Nashville?
Drunk driving is one of the most common causes of accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Nationwide, 11,654 individuals were killed in DUI accidents in 2020 alone.
Understanding the DUI laws in Nashville is essential if you get hurt in a car crash. According to Tennessee Code § 55-10-401, driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher is illegal. Commercial drivers are held to an even stricter standard, with a legal limit of only .04% BAC. Moreover, drivers under 21 must not consume any alcohol when driving, as the state has a zero-tolerance policy for underage drivers.
In addition, drivers in Tennessee are also prohibited from operating a vehicle under the influence of any intoxicant or drug affecting their ability to drive a vehicle safely.
The Consequences of Drunk Driving
If a driver is caught driving under the influence, they may face criminal charges, such as fines, license suspension, and, depending on the severity of their intoxication, even jail time.
However, criminal charges are not the only consequences of drunk driving. Drivers may also be liable for other road users’ damages if they cause a car crash while intoxicated. If a drunk driver caused your injuries and damages, Morgan & Morgan’s Nashville DUI lawyers can help you get justice.
The Effects of Alcohol on Drivers
Individuals consuming alcohol when driving put their own lives and the lives of others at risk due to their irresponsible behavior. But what exactly does alcohol do to drivers? Alcohol affects the central nervous system, which controls body functions such as reaction time, judgment, and coordination.
However, everybody is affected differently by alcohol. The effects on drivers can vary depending on the type and amount of alcohol consumed and factors such as age, weight, and gender. In general, alcohol can cause:
- Impaired judgment
- Reduced coordination
- Slowed reaction time
- Poor vision
- Increased aggression and risk-taking
The detrimental effects of alcohol can vastly increase the likelihood of a car accident, especially when combined with other risky driving behaviors, such as speeding or distracted driving.
Your Next Best Steps in a Nashville DUI Accident
Protecting your legal rights is critical in a DUI accident in Nashville. Report the crash immediately, even if the other driver protests. Here are your next best steps:
Put Safety First
Emotions can run high at every car accident scene. However, intoxicated drivers can be particularly unpredictable and aggressive. Put your safety first and avoid escalating the situation. If the other driver is trying to argue with you and acts belligerently, don’t engage and step away from them.
If you can, return to your car and wait for the police to arrive. Try to document any erratic behavior by covertly taking pictures or videos with your phone, taking care not to aggravate the intoxicated individual further.
When you are in an accident with a drunk driver, calling law enforcement can be critical and help you prove that the other driver was intoxicated at the time of the crash. The police will document the accident and most likely conduct a field sobriety test on the driver. If they find the driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs, police may arrest and charge them with a DUI.
See a Doctor
If you opted out of receiving medical help at the accident scene, visit your doctor to protect your health and legal rights. You could suffer from underlying injuries, even if you only feel minor symptoms, such as neck stiffness or a headache. Medical professionals can safeguard your health by diagnosing, treating, or ruling out serious injuries. Ensure the doctor notes all your symptoms and injuries, as you may need evidence for a compensation claim.
Collect Contact and Insurance Details
Gather the contact details and insurance information from the intoxicated driver and all other involved parties. If there are witnesses, ask them for their contact details, as witness statements can be vital for proving fault in your crash.
Gather Information and Evidence
If possible, take pictures of all angles of the accident scene, including the vehicles involved and your injuries. This information can help accident reconstruction professionals determine how the accident happened and whether the drunk driver is responsible.
In the days after the accident, keep track of medical bills, doctor’s notes, and other documentation related to your injuries. Your attorney can use this information to calculate your damages and seek maximum compensation.
Contact Your Insurer
Tell your insurance company as soon as possible that you were involved in an accident with a drunk driver. Your insurer can advise you on your next best steps and help you initiate a claim for damages.
Consult a Nashville DUI Lawyer
Getting what you deserve can be challenging when a DUI driver causes an accident. Speak to an experienced attorney as soon as possible to clarify your legal options and the best course of action. Morgan & Morgan is here to help you navigate the legal process and identify all opportunities for recovering the compensation you need and deserve when a drunk driver causes your crash.
Damages Recoverable in DUI Accidents
Accidents with drunk drivers can destroy your health, career, life quality, and financial stability. If you suffer permanent injuries, you could face high healthcare costs for the rest of your life. However, you should not have to pay when a reckless drunk driver causes your accident. Our Nashville DUI lawyers could help you recover damages such as:
- Medical expenses
- Medical devices
- Lost wages
- Future expected loss of income
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Loss of life enjoyment
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Is a Drunk Driver Automatically Negligent?
While a drunk driver is not necessarily considered automatically negligent in an accident, the legal doctrine of “negligence per se” typically applies. Negligence per se means that the driver broke the law by driving intoxicated, which can help prove their responsibility for the accident.
However, just because the driver was drunk doesn’t mean they’re automatically liable for your injuries and expenses. You must prove their actions caused your crash, injuries, and financial losses. A Morgan & Morgan Nashville DUI lawyer can build a strong case against the drunk driver to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
How Can Morgan & Morgan Help Me With a DUI Accident?
When you lose a loved one or suffer significant injuries in an accident involving a drunk driver, getting compensated can be trickier than you might think. Moreover, haggling with insurance companies and filing a lawsuit while you are in the middle of recovery can be exhausting. Morgan & Morgan is here to help. Our Nashville DUI lawyers can:
- Investigate the accident comprehensively
- Prove the fault of the drunk driver
- Collect and organize evidence to prove your case
- Calculate the value of your claim
- Negotiate with insurers to help you get compensated fairly
- File a lawsuit and represent you strongly at trial, if necessary
Don’t struggle with a complex claim alone when you could have America’s largest personal injury firm in your corner.
Can I Receive Compensation if My Loved One Died in a Crash With a Drunk Driver?
Losing a loved one in a car accident with a drunk driver is a shocking and devastating experience. Not only are you dealing with emotional trauma, but you may also face unprecedented financial burdens such as funeral expenses, medical bills, and lost income.
While you may be able to receive compensation if your loved one was killed in a crash with a drunk driver, the legal process can be complicated. An experienced Nashville DUI lawyer at Morgan & Morgan can take some of the burdens off your shoulders and help you recover what you need to rebuild your life after your loss.
The damages relatives of victims may be able to recover in a wrongful death claim can vary but may include:
- Medical expenses before your loved one passed away
- Funeral and burial costs
- Lost income and lost future earnings
- Pain and suffering
Pursuing a wrongful death claim cannot compensate for losing a loved one. However, prevailing in the lawsuit can provide financial support and hold the drunk driver to account for their actions.
What if the Drunk Driver Is Uninsured?
If the drunk driver who caused your accident does not have insurance, you may still be able to recover compensation. For example, you could file a claim with your insurer if you have uninsured motorist coverage. You could also hold a driver personally responsible for your damages.
A seasoned Nashville DUI lawyer can review your insurance policy to determine your coverage and work to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
When Should I File a DUI Accident Lawsuit in Nashville?
Tennessee has one of the shortest timelines in the country for filing personal injury lawsuits. According to Tennessee Code § 28-3-104, the statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits is generally only one year from the accident date.
However, there are exceptions to this rule. Since the specific time limit for your case can vary depending on the circumstances of your crash, seek legal advice as soon as possible after getting hurt. Missing an important deadline could prevent you from pursuing compensation.
Could a Drunk Driver Face Criminal and Civil Charges?
An intoxicated driver may face criminal and civil charges for the same incident. The state or federal government typically files criminal charges to punish the driver for violating the law. On the other hand, the victim or surviving family members typically bring civil charges. Civil lawsuits are intended to compensate victims and families for the damages they sustained due to the driver’s actions.
Although different parties bring the two types of charges, they can both arise from the same car accident and be pursued simultaneously.
Which Third Parties Could I Sue When a Drunk Driver Caused My Accident?
If you are injured in a DUI accident in Nashville, the intoxicated driver may not be the only one responsible for your injuries and expenses. Several third parties could also be liable, including:
If the driver was on the job at the time of the accident, their employer may have some responsibility for the crash. For example, an employer could be liable if the driver was making a work-related delivery.
A Bar or Restaurant
Under dram shop liability laws, a bar or restaurant serving alcohol to a visibly intoxicated driver may be liable if an accident occurs. The law also applies when an establishment serves patrons under the legal drinking age.
Our Nashville DUI lawyers can help identify all the potential third parties responsible for your injuries and losses and hold them accountable for their actions.
We Fight Hard for DUI Accident Victims
DUI drivers willfully risk causing injuries and deaths when they get behind the wheel. Morgan & Morgan believes that the victims of such reckless behavior deserve the best possible legal representation and should never settle for less. If you or a loved one is affected, our Nashville DUI lawyers want to help.
You pay nothing until we win and recover compensation for you. Get started now and contact us for a free case review to learn about your rights.