Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is very dangerous, not to mention illegal. Unfortunately, however, thousands of people still drive while intoxicated in Maryland every year, and many of them end up causing Maryland car accidents as a result. Driving under the influence is dangerous because alcohol and drugs impact your judgment, your decision-making, and your vision. Drunk drivers are more likely to make careless or even reckless driving maneuvers, run red lights, drive the wrong way down the street, or drive at speeds far above the speed limit. These actions can tragically have devastating consequences on the lives of other drivers.
For example, a drunk driver was recently arrested after causing a car crash that killed a mother and sent her two children to the hospital. According to a local news report covering the incident, the driver was driving in the wrong direction on the road when he collided with the victim’s car. She and her two children, ages six and eight, were all rushed to the hospital, where the mother tragically passed away.
This story is tragic, but unfortunately not all that uncommon. According to a recent report, Maryland has 308.7 DUI-related arrests per 100,000 people. The 2018 Maryland Highway Safety Plan reports that from 2011 to 2015, impaired/intoxicated driving caused one in three fatal crashes, one in ten crashes overall, and nearly one in ten crashes resulting in injuries.
While Maryland car accidents caused by intoxicated drivers can and often do lead to criminal charges, there’s another type of lawsuit that can hold negligent drivers responsible: a civil negligence suit. When a Maryland resident is injured or loses a family member in one of these crashes, they have the option to file this kind of lawsuit against whoever caused the accident, regardless of whether or not criminal charges were filed.
To be successful in these suits, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed a duty of care to drive carefully, that they breached their duty of care (by driving intoxicated and recklessly, for example), that their breach caused the accident, and that the plaintiff suffered real damages as a result. These suits can be essential for Maryland car accident victims, who may find themselves struggling to pay medical bills and expenses related to their injuries. They can also be essential for family members who lose a loved one in a crash—such as the woman’s family in the tragic case described above. Not only does that family now have medical expenses to pay, but also funeral and burial costs and lost wages. Filing a civil negligence suit against the drunk driver who crashed into them can help them recover.
Have You Been Injured or Lost a Loved One Because of a Drunk Driver?
If you have been injured in a Maryland drunk driving accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. While filing a lawsuit may be the furthest thing from your mind while recovering physically and emotionally from the accident, doing so can significantly ease the financial burden associated with the crash. That’s why Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, wants to make the process easier for you. Our personal injury law firm has countless numerous Maryland clients in car accident cases. Our skilled advocates will fight tirelessly for your legal rights. To learn more, call 800-654-1949.