DUI accident victims in Georgia and nationwide are often given the opportunity to address the court and offender in a criminal proceeding through a Victim Impact Statement. This is a victim’s chance to tell the court how the crash has impacted his or her life emotionally, financially, and physically.
In order to make your statement impactful, you need to give serious thought to what you want the court to know. It is best to start writing down everything that comes to your mind and then come back later to read it and edit it down to the most important parts. When finalizing your Victim Impact Statement, you may want to follow the Dos and Don’ts outlined below:
- Do try and use words that evoke feeling so the court can feel your loss
- Do create a word picture that will help the court identify and understand your experience
- Do use words that express your hurt and pain
- Do ask someone to review your statement for grammar and punctuation errors
- Don’t use this statement to directly blame the offender
- Don’t vent anger or express what type of punishment you would like the offender to receive
- Don’t use profane language in your statement
- Don’t say or write anything that isn’t true
It’s important that Fayette County DUI victims do not stop with a Victim Impact Statement. Victims have the right to pursue a civil case to collect damages for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost income, and other damages. To find out about your rights following a Georgia crash caused by a drunk driver, contact Peachtree City drunk driving victim attorney Shane Smith at (980) 246-2656 for a free case consultation.