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Fatal Drunk Driving Accidents

Making the drunk driver pay for causing your tragic loss in Pennsylvania

Fatal Drunk Driving Accident

The emotional and physical harm caused by drunk drivers is devastating. Even though drunk driving accidents have declined in recent years, the statistics are staggering.

These are not “accidents,” they are crimes. Be sure and hire a lawyer who is committed to making the parties at fault pay. Bars, restaurants or even those who serve alcohol to others at their home are not allowed to serve alcohol to someone who will be driving and who is already visibly drunk. Ask your lawyer about his or her experience making irresponsible bars and hosts pay. Proving they served a drunk driver while he was visibly drunk can be a challenge, but may turn out to be the best source of recovery available to a drunk driving victim's family.

Money That May Be Available

If your loved one was killed by a drunk driver, your tragic loss entitles you to money called "compensatory damages." You may also be entitled to additional money known as "punitive damages."

Compensatory damages are awarded to pay for medical bills, funeral expenses, the pain and suffering of your loved one, the wages that they would have earned if they continued to work, and more.

Punitive damages are meant to punish the drunk driver and are awarded to the family of the victim by the Court or a Jury if the case goes to trial. The laws regarding the types of money that the family of a loved one recovers varies from state to state. If your family member has been killed by a drunk driver, your attorney must be experienced at recovering compensatory and punitive damages in these types of accidents.

Liquor Liability Law

Many states have what is called a “Dram Shop Act”, which are liquor liability laws. These laws state that it is illegal for a bar, restaurant or a social host (such as someone who holds a party at their home) to serve a person who is already visibly drunk. If that person gets behind the wheel of a vehicle and injures or kills someone while they are driving drunk, you can also recover money from that drinking establishment or social host.

Proving that a third party served someone who was already visibly drunk is a challenge. The sooner you retain a lawyer, the sooner your lawyer can take the steps to promptly find the people that may help prove this case. Finding people who saw the drunk driver being served while visibly drunk can be critical to these cases and needs to happen soon, while these witnesses still congregate at that bar. Hiring the right experts to use blood alcohol results to help prove how drunk a person appeared when they were served is expensive and complicated.

Make sure you hire a lawyer that has familiarity with the right experts and has a track record of successfully using them to get money from bars and restaurants that profit from helping a driver get drunker.

Conclusion

Make sure that you hire a lawyer that takes your loss personally! They must understand that you lost a loved one and it wasn't an accident. We won't stop working for your family until every possible source of recovery available is pursued.

Complete the short form on the right side of this page if you would like SurvivingWrongfulDeath.com to promptly connect you with Attorney Jon Ostroff of Ostroff Injury Law. Jon is an honorary member of MADD of Pennsylvania, and has been standing up for the victims of drunk drivers, across Pennsylvania, for nearly twenty years.

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