There are standard steps for what to do after a car accident, but there are some special considerations to take for car accidents caused by drunk drivers. The personal injury or wrongful death claims that arise from a crash with a drunk driver have some important differences that an Atlanta accident lawyer can help explain. If this is a situation you find your family in, it may be time to ask, “Should I get a lawyer?”
There Are 2 Sides to Car Accidents Caused By Drunk Drivers
One of the reasons you’d answer “yes” to the question of “Should I get a lawyer?” is because there are actually 2 important sides to the cases generated by crashes with drunk drivers: personal injury cases and criminal cases. This may alter what to do after a car accident to preserve your claim because you’ll need to be extra careful the 2 cases do not impact each other.
Your personal injury case will be a claim filed with the insurance company. A good Atlanta accident lawyer will caution you to take the following steps after a car accident with a drunk driver:
- contact emergency services;
- gather evidence at the scene through photographs and witnesses;
- don’t speak to anyone about the accident until you’ve talked with a lawyer;
- don’t accuse the other driver of DUI – you don’t have valid proof; and
- don’t refuse medical evaluation.
Failing to take any of these steps could result in problems when filing a personal injury claim in the next few weeks.
The other side of what to do after a car accident involves a completely different situation – a criminal case. When a driver is suspected of DUI they will be evaluated by the police for evidence of intoxication above the legal limit. You or your passengers may become part of this case as witnesses to testify against the accused driver.
Even a car accident that a drunk driver caused that does not make it to court as a criminal case can be difficult to deal with alone. An Atlanta accident lawyer can help you pursue compensation through a personal injury claim and help you make informed decisions about how you are involved in any criminal case that may arise from the accident.
If you’re still asking, "Should I get a lawyer or not?" continue reading to learn what can happen when you make drunk driving claims without valid proof.