My brother's life is at stake after a DUI accident in Long Beach, and I need to know our legal options immediately.
Last month, my brother was seriously injured in an auto accident caused by a drunk driver in Long Beach, CA. The medical bills are piling up, and he hasn't been able to work since the accident. We're considering a personal injury claim, but we're also wondering about the criminal charges the driver might face. I've heard that California has strict DUI laws, but I'm unsure how this plays into our case. Moreover, what kind of attorney should I be looking for, and how can I be sure they're qualified? Lastly, I'd like an idea of what this might cost us.
Initial Analysis of Your Situation
Based on the information you've provided, your brother is entitled to seek compensation for the injuries he suffered in the auto accident caused by the drunk driver. California law allows victims of DUI accidents to file personal injury claims against at-fault drivers. Furthermore, the state can pursue criminal charges against individuals driving under the influence.
Relevant Statutes and Sources
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152
- DUI Conviction Penalties – You can read more about the specific penalties on the California DMV website.
Possible Solutions for Your Issue
- Personal Injury Claim: You can file a claim against the driver to cover medical bills, lost wages, and other related expenses. Look for personal injury lawyers experienced in DUI cases.
- Criminal Charges: The local prosecutor will determine if criminal charges should be filed against the driver. You can ask a free legal question to know more about the process.
Cost Considerations in Long Beach, CA
|Initial Consultation||$150 - $250|
|Filing a Personal Injury Claim||$2,000 - $5,000|
|Criminal Court Representation||$5,000 - $15,000|
|Miscellaneous Legal Fees||$500 - $2,000|
Note: Many attorneys work on a contingency fee for personal injury cases, which means they only get paid if you win the case. Always discuss payment structures upfront.
Additional Information Needed
We could provide a more precise guidance if you could provide more details. Please compare lawyers in your area to determine the best fit for your needs.
Relevant Questions for You
- Did your brother receive any immediate medical attention, and do you have those medical records?
- Did the police make a report at the scene of the accident?
- Do you have any witnesses who saw the accident?
Q1: Can the drunk driver be sued for damages and also face criminal charges?
Yes, the driver can face both a civil lawsuit for damages and criminal charges for driving under the influence. The outcomes of each case are independent of each other.
Q2: If the driver is found not guilty in a criminal trial, can we still win a personal injury lawsuit?
Absolutely. The standards of proof in criminal and civil cases are different. Even if the driver is acquitted in criminal court, you can still succeed in a civil claim.
Q3: How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit in California?
You typically have two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit, as per the California statute of limitations.
Q4: What if my brother was partially at fault for the accident?
California follows a "comparative negligence" rule. If your brother is found to be partially at fault, any compensation he might receive will be reduced by his percentage of fault.
Q5: What should we do immediately after the accident?
Ensure medical attention is received, collect evidence from the scene, gather witness information, and consult with a qualified attorney as soon as possible.
DisclaimerThis content is for informational purposes only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. It's always recommended to consult with a local attorney about your specific situation.
Written, answered, changedLegal question "Drunk Driver in Long Beach: Personal Injury and Criminal Charges" has been changed 6 days ago. Demonstrate your legal skills and willingness to help and answer right now! Issue is related to the location of Long Beach & area of law: Automobile accident attorneys.
When should you seek a personal injury lawyer? Car accident attorney will be needed in the event of traffic accidents that lead to serious injuries or long-term medical treatment of those involved. Choosing an experienced attorney will help increase the chances that you get the compensation that you deserve. By hiring a personal injury lawyer to represent you immediately after a car accident, you will have a professional working for you – one who is very knowledgeable about the specific field of law and procedural rules that may significantly affect your case.
An indicator of the skills of a particular injury lawyer is the fact how many lawsuits he/she has won as well as careful pre-court preparation and possibly also the process of negotiation with the counterparty. In the case of car accidents where there are problems related to limits for car insurance, lawyers may threaten to file a suit. However, in most cases, an out-of-court settlement can be reached between the parties. Why should you hire a car accident attorney? Underestimating such a decision may result in considerable financial loss, especially in the event that you or the other party (the participant of the accident) have inadequate insurance coverage and the insurance company thus does not pay the claim.