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Holding a drunk driver liable following a drunk driving accident

Being involved in any type of motor vehicle accident can be a very serious event for residents in Iowa and elsewhere. In some situations, it may not be entirely clear what caused the collision; however, in others, it can easily be determined that the negligence of a driver was the cause. With regard to drinking and driving, when a driver fails to drive below the legal blood-alcohol limit, he or she could be held responsible for the accident resulting from their intoxication and any injuries, losses and damages arising from it.

When individuals consider the penalties that a drunk driver could face after a drunk driving accident, most highlight the criminal aspects of the incident. While there is a great possibility that the driver will face criminal charges and penalties for his or her negligence behind the wheel, the driver could also endure civil liabilities. In fact, an injured victim can use the evidence and information associated with a criminal action in a civil action against a drunk driver in an effort to hold a drunk driver liable.

The evidence uncovered during a DUI stop could help prove the intoxication level of the suspected drunk driver. A blood test or breath test could show the blood-alcohol concentration at the time of the incident and the victim can use this information to prove that the driver was too intoxicated to safely operate a vehicle.

Police reports and witness accounts can also be used to show that the drunk driver failed to exercise reasonable care for the safety of the public. This evidence could help prove the negligence or recklessness of the driver, helping a victim hold him or her accountable for the injuries, damages and losses caused by the incident.

Being involved in an automobile collision can significantly impact the life of the victim and his or her loved ones. When negligence, such as intoxication, is part of the cause of the incident, victims should seek to hold the party at fault accountable. Those injured in a drunk driving accident should become familiar with their legal rights and options. Obtaining legal guidance can help to ensure victims make informed decisions, helping protect their rights and interests.

Source: FindLaw, "Drunk Driving Accidents," accessed Sept. 21, 2015

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