DUI Attorneys in Douglasville
If you’ve been hurt in an accident where the at-fault driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you need the comprehensive legal representation of Sherrod & Bernard, P.C. Our car injury attorneys have been fighting for the rights of DUI accident victims since our firm was founded in 1992. We are ready to put our experience to work for you now.
Whether on interstates, highways, city streets, or back roads, DUI accidents can happen at any time to sober victims who are heading to work, school, or home, or otherwise going about their business.
The Douglasville car accident lawyers of Sherrod & Bernard, P.C., represent injured victims who may lose weeks or months of work due to their injuries, as well as facing massive medical bills and extensive pain and suffering. Contact us by phone or online now to schedule your free, confidential consultation with our team to discuss your legal options.
Who is Liable After a DUI Accident in Georgia?
DUI accidents lawsuits may have one or more parties who could potentially be liable, depending on where alcohol was purchased and consumed and other circumstances of the crash. The intoxicated person’s insurer could be required to compensate victims for their injury claims, but liability may extend past the insurer, according to Georgia dram shop law.
Georgia Code 51-1-40 outlines how dram shops (alcohol-serving establishments like bars and restaurants) that serve alcohol in small units (by the drink), can be held liable by the injured person when the establishment served an already intoxicated person and meet the following criteria:
- Unlawfully, willingly, and knowingly serving alcoholic beverages to persons under 18
- Serving alcohol to a person who is visibly intoxicated (regardless of age)
- Supplying alcohol to someone who will be driving soon
The injured person may be entitled to compensation from the intoxicated driver’s insurer as well as from the establishment that provided alcohol.
Georgia laws allow injured persons to hold social hosts liable for damages, too.
For example, if there’s an after-work party where alcohol is served, the person who is providing alcohol could be held liable for accidents caused by intoxicated drivers under social host liability. Responsibility doesn’t escape party hosts, even though they’re not licensed to serve alcoholic beverages to visitors.
In situations where establishments or individual hosts are liable, Georgia assigns monetary damages, which requires injured persons to take civil action exclusive of any action taken against the driver’s insurer. The skilled legal team at Sherrod & Bernard, P.C. can help injured people with claims against an establishment or host, which must be filed within two years of the injury.
Criminal Case Versus Civil Claim After a DUI.
A DUI accident in Douglas county can have both a civil and a criminal component. Victims who sustain injuries (or the families of victims who die from accident-related injuries) may be entitled to substantial compensation based on their loss of wages, loss of consortium, pain, and suffering, medical bills, vehicle damage, and other losses. Additional civil action may be necessary to recover compensation from other liable parties, which, in some cases, is the establishment that willingly served an intoxicated person.
When the intoxicated driver is found to be over Georgia’s legal limit (currently 0.08 percent for adults over 21 and 0.02 for drivers under 21), a criminal defense will be necessary. Georgia has strict laws for intoxicated drivers who cause accidents, and license suspensions, substantial monetary fines, DUI classes, and imprisonment can result.
It is important to realize that criminal and civil DUI cases are completely separate matters. An impaired driver may be held responsible for a drunk driving crash even if the driver is acquitted on criminal DUI charges or if charges were never brought. Similarly, the fact that a driver is charged with DUI or convicted on the charges does not mean the driver will automatically be held civilly responsible for the accident.
Sherrod & Bernard, P.C. takes cases for victims in DUI accidents with the same superior representation we’ve provided for over 75 years cumulatively.
What to Do If You Were Hit by a Drunk Driver in Georgia.
The actions you take after being hurt by an intoxicated driver could impact the outcome of your civil case. If you are physically able, take the following steps before bringing your case to our firm:
- Immediately check on the welfare of any occupants in your vehicle, then help others involved in the crash if possible. If moving them would cause further injury, offer to stay with them until help arrives.
- Call emergency services and law enforcement if no one else has.
- Cooperate with law enforcement officials. State only the facts about what you observed before, during, or after the accident. Do not speculate about matters.
- Collect as much information as you can from any witnesses, including other victims, onlookers, the other driver, or their passengers.
- Immediately phone Sherrod & Bernard P.C. after you’ve received medical attention.
While we understand all victims will need time to recuperate and heal, calling our office as soon as possible allows our attorneys to get police records, accident evidenced, and insurance information quickly. From there, we’ll build our case and determine if additional at-fault parties should be held civilly liable.
We Help Families Who Lost Loved Ones to a Drunk Driving Accident.
Sherrod & Bernard P.C. represents families who have lost a loved one from a DUI accident in Douglasville, GA. We understand the anguish and grief that a sudden and unexpected loss can cause, and we are here to provide supportive, compassionate care to families in need.
While it is often difficult to focus on anything other than grief following a tragic accident that claims the life of a loved one, getting answers and compensation is often vital to surviving family members. Income replacement, loss of consortium, pain, and suffering, and other forms of relief are often necessary to help the family in the aftermath of an accident. Our firm is here to assist families in holding the responsible party accountable for their actions and getting the compensation the surviving family deserves.
Did you lose someone in a DUI accident? Let our law firm help you and your family today.
Contact Our Georgia DUI Defense Attorneys Today
If you sustained injuries due to a driver’s irresponsible decision to drive drunk, you should not have to pay out of pocket for their mistake. Don’t try to handle your injury claim by yourself or leave it in the hands of an inexperienced attorney. If court actions are filed improperly or a claimant accepts an inadequate settlement offered by the insurer, medical bills, and other expenses may not be covered.
If you were hurt by a drunk driver in Georgia, contact Sherrod & Bernard today, and let us handle your DUI accident case or claim with the professionalism and skill for which we’re known. All consultations are free, and we charge no fees unless we secure compensation for you.
Phone us today or fill out an online contact form, and we’ll immediately schedule your free initial case review.