Despite significant criminal penalties and decades of public education and safety messaging, people continue to get behind the wheel drunk. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are around 37 deaths every day due to drunk driving. Our Madison injury attorneys regularly represent people hurt by drunk drivers as well as surviving family members of people killed by drunk drivers.
There are a few things you can do after a drunk driving accident to protect your rights. Four of the most important are described below. For more information, contact our office to schedule a free consultation with a Wisconsin injury attorney.
The first thing you should do after an accident is call the police, especially if you suspect the other driver is drunk. Whether he or she is impaired is not a determination you can’t make on your own. When the police show up, if they also suspect the other driver is drunk, they will likely arrest them and note their intoxication in the police report regarding the accident.
Even if you believe you didn’t sustain serious injuries, our lawyers advise consulting with a medical professional. Seeing a doctor ensures that hidden injuries are identified and treated early. Additionally, medical records are important when pursuing compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other potential losses.
After an accident, the drunk driver’s insurance company may contact you with a settlement offer. We advise accident victims not to accept any settlement offers without consulting an attorney. These initial offers are often lower than what you may be entitled to. By accepting a settlement prematurely, you may forfeit your right to seek rightful compensation for damages such as:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Ongoing pain and suffering
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of consortium
Wait until you get an attorney to help you determine the full extent of your damages before accepting any settlement offers. This will ensure you receive a fair settlement that adequately covers your losses.
A personal injury attorney specializing in drunk driving accidents is key for protecting your rights and securing the compensation you deserve. Some of the ways that a lawyer can help you include the following:
- Provide you with legal advice and guidance tailored to your specific situation
- Gather crucial evidence, interview witnesses, and obtain police reports to build a strong case
- Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf to secure a fair settlement
- Represent you in court and advocate for your rights if a lawsuit becomes necessary
If you have been hurt by a drunk driver, call an attorney immediately. At Atterbury, Kammer & Haag, S.C., we understand the challenges you face after an injury-causing accident and will do everything possible to get you the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a no-obligation initial case evaluation.