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Morrin Law Office

Kentucky Attorney for Victims of Drunk & Inebriated Drivers

The entire nation has made drinking and driving a crime. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that one person is killed every 53 minutes in a crash relating to drunk driving. In Kentucky specifically, around 17% of all highway fatalities are caused by a drunk driver.

With drunk driving accidents being that common, it is essential for those living in Kentucky to know what to do following a car crash. A personal injury attorney can assist with the process of seeking fair compensation to cover the injuries and damages from a collision.

Some helpful definitions provided by the Kentucky Highway Transportation include:

  • Impaired: A person’s ability to think clearly and react appropriately isn’t fully functional.
  • Drunk: A person is visibly impaired, such as staggering or slurring their speech.
  • Intoxicated: A legal term to reflect the amount of alcohol in a person’s blood.

Alcohol Laws in Kentucky

The legal drinking age in Kentucky is 21 years old. However, regardless of age, it is illegal to operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol. A driver involved in an accident is considered drunk if they have a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of the following:

  • 08% for drivers 21 and older;
  • 02% for drivers under 21; and
  • 04% for commercial drivers.

Kentucky also enforces implied consent laws, meaning that a driver must submit to BAC testing if requested by an officer. If the officer finds that the person is drunk, it is considered driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI).

How Does a Drunk Driver Cause an Accident?

When a person is under the influence of alcohol while driving, they can cause accidents due to:

  • Impaired judgment: Alcohol is known to affect decision-making and reaction times, which is extremely dangerous while driving.
  • Reduced coordination: A driver’s motor skills are impaired if they have been drinking, which makes it difficult to control the vehicle.
  • Slower reaction time: A person under the influence can have delayed responses to road conditions and traffic signals, which can result in a collision.
  • Reduced vision: A drunk person can experience blurred vision and the inability to focus, which are both severely dangerous while driving.
  • Increased risk-taking: An inebriated person may engage in reckless behavior like speeding or ignoring traffic signals, which can cause a collision with other drivers.

Were you recently in an accident caused by a drunk person in Kentucky? Morrin Law Firm can assess your case and help walk you through what your options are next.

Potential Injuries

Accidents that drunk drivers cause can easily be devastating. Depending on the factors that contributed to the crash, a victim may suffer from any of the following injuries: 

Have you recently suffered from a serious injury due to a car crash? Call the office of Morrin Law to discuss your case.

Damages Following an Accident Caused by a Drunk Driver

The compensation a person in an accident can be awarded for an accident injury is based on the resulting damages caused by the crash. Damages can include:

  • Medical expenses – Costs of immediate and long-term medical care caused by the accident injury.
  • Lost wages – Compensation for time off due to injuries.
  • Property damage – Repair or replacement of the vehicle.
  • Pain and suffering – Compensation for physical and emotional distress caused by the collision.
  • Punitive damages – Additional damages to punish the drunk driver and deter future behavior.

What to Do if Hit by a Drunk Driver?

When the unthinkable happens and you find yourself a victim of a car accident, you must know what to do next. Morrin Law recommends taking the following steps:

  1. Ensure the safety of yourself and others by moving to a safe location and checking for any instant signs of injury.
  2. Call 911 to report the accident and request medical assistance if immediately needed.
  3. Obtain documentation to support your case including images and videos from the accident scene, vehicle damage, and any visible injuries.
  4. Gather personal and insurance information from the other driver, as well as information from any potential witnesses to the collision.
  5. Seek medical attention even if your injuries do not seem severe.
  6. Notify insurance by reporting the accident to your insurance company.
  7. Consult an attorney with Morrin Law who specializes in supporting those injured in car accidents caused by drunk drivers.

Contact our office today and take advantage of the free consultation we offer to new clients.

Liability and Fault

The state of Kentucky follows a “pure comparative negligence” rule regarding car accident claims. This means that each person involved in the collision could hold some fault, and the potential compensation they can obtain through a claim is subtracted from their amount of fault. If the case were to go to trial, the judge would reduce each driver’s liability accordingly.

However, a collision caused by an inebriated driver will likely have the fault fall on them. This is because drunk driving is compelling evidence of reckless behavior – since it is also against the law. A collision caused by a drunk driver can result in them being liable for punitive damages for the dangerous and reckless behavior.

If the drunk driver was an employee who was working at the time of the crash, their employer may also be liable under certain conditions.

Contact a personal injury lawyer in Kentucky regarding any liability questions you may have regarding your case.

Benefits of Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney

There are several benefits to hiring a Kentucky personal injury attorney to represent your case. A lawyer experienced in drunk driving cases can provide you with knowledge and insight throughout the entire process. This can include helping to ensure all necessary evidence from the accident scene is collected and documented. An attorney can also negotiate with the insurance companies, which takes off a huge burden for you.

Morrin Law aims to secure a fair settlement for our clients. We can do this by helping calculate the damages to accurately assess the value of the claim, including future expenses. When you collaborate with us, we’ll provide you with legal guidance to ensure you are making an informed decision with your claim.

Are Settlements Higher in Kentucky When the At-Fault Driver Was Drunk?

As mentioned with liability and fault, an accident where a driver is confirmed to have been drunk while operating their vehicle already establishes clear negligence.

While this can lead to higher compensatory damages, it’s important to note that every case is different. If you were recently injured by a drunk driver and are considering filing a personal injury claim, contact Morrin Law.

Wrongful Death Caused by Inebriated Driver

Wrongful death is when a victim dies in a car accident caused by another person’s reckless behavior. If a victim of a drunk driving crash dies, their family may seek to claim:

  • Funeral and burial expenses;
  • Compensation for loss of companionship (loss of consortium);
  • Compensation for lost financial support;
  • Compensation for emotional distress experienced by the family; and
  • Punitive damages to punish the driver for their reckless behavior.

You can read more about wrongful death cases here.

Options to Sue After a Drunk Driving Collision

If your personal injury claim cannot be settled, you may be eligible to pursue legal options by either:

  1. Filing a personal injury lawsuit;
  2. Filing a wrongful death lawsuit; or
  3. Seeking punitive damages, as mentioned above.

Under KRS 304.39-060, a person could pursue legal action against the inebriated driver if the crash exceeded the following: 

  • $1,000 in medical expenses;
  • A broken bone(s);
  • Permanent disfigurement;
  • Permanent injury; or

Are you considering taking legal action against a drunk driver who crashed into you? Contact the personal injury attorneys with Morrin Law Firm to discuss the details of your case.

Contact Morrin Law Firm

If you need legal assistance regarding a car crash, contact Morrin Law Firm. We specialize in personal injury cases and can provide you with expert guidance during this time. We can help you navigate the legal process of filing a personal injury claim. Our ultimate goal is to help you feel back to yourself and be awarded the compensation you deserve!

Call the Kentucky Personal Injury lawyers office of Morrin Law at (859) 358-0300 to schedule a risk-free case evaluation today.