Driving while intoxicated is one of the more reckless and unlawful actions a person can commit in Louisiana. Not only are drunk drivers putting themselves at risk, but they are also putting their passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians, in danger. Persons involved in these collisions, however, do have the right to prosecute the defendant for punitive damages due to the incident.
If you have been injured or lost a loved one in an accident involving drunk driving, do not hesitate to contact The Law Firm of Eddie Clark and Associates. We want to be your expert personal injury car accident attorney. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your case, Attorney Eddie Clark and his associates, with a clear knowledge of personal injury law will help you.
Statistical data reveals that 306 alcohol-related accidents were resulting in 333 fatalities in 2016 according to the Louisiana Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) Crash Dashboard. The figure dropped by about 6.9 percent in 2017. The death toll was still high, however, totaling 309 in further years. From the year 2003 to 2012, in crashes involving a drunk driver in Louisiana 3,046 people have been killed.
Driving while intoxicated (DWI), or “driving under influence” (DUI), is a serious criminal offense.
Louisiana DWI Statute covers drunk driving. (La. Rev. Stat. 14-98). You can be arrested and potentially charged for a DWI in Louisiana if your BAC level is registered at 0.08 percent or higher. Louisiana DWI law imposes a prison sentence on most offenders though the terms of probation can preclude jail time. For example, a first offender of Louisiana DWI law faces the prospect of 10 days to six months in prison, which will be shortened to 48 hours if the offender performs at least 32 hours of community service, attends a court-ordered substance abuse program, and also completes a driver education course. Additionally, first offenders have at least 90 days of suspending their license. The driver may have his or her car impounded and sold at auction after a third offense. Throughout Louisiana, when intoxicated, it is illegal to operate a vehicle a watercraft, a vessel or any other form of transport. In Louisiana, the sentence for DWI violations varies depending on whether or not the person was already convicted of driving while being intoxicated. There is also a Child Endangerment Law which states that the mandatory sentence cannot be suspended if a child 12 years of age or younger is a passenger in the vehicle when a DWI is committed.
In Louisiana, the statute of limitations is one year for most personal injury cases.
In Louisiana, if you are a victim of a drunk driving accident, the law will allow you to receive compensatory and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are those which are calculable or estimated. They include damages and compensation for past and future medical bills, lost wages, property rehabilitation and repair expenses.
Section 2315.4 of the Louisiana Civil Code holds the key to recovering punitive damages. To recover punitive damage caused by a drunk driver, Attorney Eddie Clark must prove:
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