What Are Your Options When a Drunk Driver Hurts You?
Drunk driving is a big problem in New Mexico. The state ranks fifth in the nation for the number of fatalities caused by intoxicated drivers.
Driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal in New Mexico, and a criminal conviction may result in fines, loss of driving privileges, and jail time. In a civil lawsuit, a drunk driver may also be held financially liable for the harm they cause others.
If you were hurt by an intoxicated driver, you have the right to seek damages against them. You may also be able to recover money from bars, restaurants, and hosts who continued to serve alcohol to a driver who was clearly intoxicated.
How Drinking Impairs Driving
To prevail in a personal injury lawsuit, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached their duty of care. Driving while intoxicated is a clear violation of the duty of care, which requires people to make a reasonable effort to avoid harming others.
In New Mexico a driver is beyond the legal limit when their blood alcohol content (BAC) reaches 0.08 percent. Alcohol impairs a driver’s ability to safely operate a motor vehicle and induces drowsiness that could cause them to fall asleep behind the wheel. Drinking also increases risk-taking behavior.
Alcohol diminishes these crucial driving skills:
- Judgment and decision-making
- Vision and the ability to track objects
- Reflexes and reaction time
How Your Personal injury Lawyer Can Help
If you or a loved one was injured or killed by a drunk driver in New Mexico, you have three years to file a personal injury lawsuit. But it’s a good idea to start the process right away so your personal injury lawyer can start their investigation as soon as possible, while the evidence is still fresh.
If the driver who injured you was convicted of drunk driving, it will strengthen your case. But even if they were able to get the charges dismissed, you still have the right to be compensated for the harm you’ve endured.
Your New Mexico personal injury attorney will collect the following types of information to build your case:
- Police reports
- Breathalyzer and blood alcohol tests
- A DUI conviction
- Witness statements
- Accident scene photos
- Surveillance camera video
- Forensic investigator testimony
- Your personal account of what happened
Damages Available in a DUI Injury Claim
New Mexico is an at-fault state. That means anyone who contributed to your injuries may be held liable for damages.
According to the state’s dram shop laws, owners and employees of bars and other establishments that sell alcohol must stop serving a patron when it becomes reasonably apparent that are intoxicated. And under social host laws, people who gratuitously or recklessly serve their guest alcohol can be held accountable for the harm that results.
Your Albuquerque car accident lawyer will file a claim against anyone whose negligent actions contributed to the accident that hurt you. Insurance companies try to save money by paying out as little as they can get away with. But your personal injury attorney will negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf by filing a claim that reflects the true cost of your injuries.
Your claim will include the following types of expenses:
- Current and future medical bills
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Physical therapy
- In-home nursing care
- Wrongful death
Were You Harmed by a Drunk Driver?
You shouldn’t have to pay your own medical expenses when your injuries were caused by somebody else’s careless behavior. At Raymon Law Group, we offer a FREE strategy session and case review. And you won’t owe us anything unless we win you a settlement.
Call (505) 390-1040 to learn more today.
Criminal & Personal Injury Attorneys
Get a FREE Strategy Session and Case Review