I was struck on my motorcycle in LA and the driver fled; I've heard they might have been drunk. What should I know?
I was riding my motorcycle in Los Angeles last weekend when a car hit me. The driver didn't stop and left the scene, but a witness who was nearby thought the driver had been drinking. Now, I'm left with medical bills, a damaged bike, and lots of questions. How do California's hit-and-run laws intersect with DUI charges? Should I look for a specific kind of attorney, like a personal injury lawyer or a DUI & DWI lawyer? How do I find a good one in LA, and what's the cost likely to be? Does anyone have links to relevant laws or resources? Thanks in advance.
Analyzing the Intersection of Hit-and-Run and DUI in California
In California, being involved in a hit-and-run and fleeing the scene is a serious offense on its own. When you add potential DUI allegations, the legal complexities grow significantly. In your case, if the driver is caught and proven to have been intoxicated, they can face charges both for the hit-and-run and for driving under the influence. This would drastically increase the penalties they'd face.
Relevant Laws and Resources
- California Vehicle Code Section 20001 - Pertains to hit-and-run incidents involving injury.
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152 - Addresses driving under the influence.
- California Vehicle Code Section 23153 - Relates to DUI resulting in injury.
For the most comprehensive information, it's recommended to visit the official California Legislative Information website.
Potential Solutions for Your Case
Given your situation, your ideal approach would be to consult a personal injury lawyer. They will guide you in seeking compensation for medical bills, damages to your motorcycle, and any other related costs. If you suspect the driver was drunk, a lawyer with experience in DUI cases could provide added insight. Platforms like compare lawyers in your area can assist you in finding the right legal aid.
|Service||Average Cost in LA ($)|
|Initial Consultation||150 - 250|
|Hit-and-Run Case Representation||3,500 - 7,000|
|DUI Case Representation||5,000 - 10,000|
|Motorcycle Accident Case||4,000 - 8,500|
In California, many lawyers offer contingency fee arrangements for personal injury cases. This means you only pay if you win. However, this percentage can vary and might increase based on the complexity of your case.
Clarifications and Next Steps
To better assist you, it'd be beneficial to understand more details about your situation. Do you have insurance coverage? Have you reported the incident to the police? The more information you provide, the clearer advice can be given.
Please consider reaching out to a legal professional. They will help navigate the intricacies of your situation and potentially secure the compensation you deserve.
Relevant Questions for Your Situation
- Did you gather contact information from any witnesses? Witnesses can play a crucial role in strengthening your case, especially when it comes to identifying the suspect and confirming their state of intoxication.
- Have you sought medical attention post-accident? Medical records can be pivotal in personal injury claims.
- Was there any surveillance in the area that might have captured the incident? Footage can be a solid piece of evidence to support your claims.
Q1: What should I do immediately after a hit-and-run accident?
After ensuring your safety, it's important to gather as much information as possible. Take pictures of the scene, gather witness testimonies, and report the incident to the police. Seek medical attention immediately, even if you feel fine.
Q2: If the driver isn't found, can I still seek compensation?
Yes, depending on your insurance, you might be able to claim under uninsured motorist coverage. Discuss this with your insurance provider and attorney.
Q3: What are the penalties for DUI in California?
Penalties vary based on the circumstances of the arrest and any previous offenses. They can include fines, jail time, and suspension of driving privileges.
Q4: How long do I have to file a lawsuit after my motorcycle accident?
In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is generally two years from the date of the injury.
Q5: Will my motorcycle accident case go to trial?
Most personal injury cases are settled out of court. However, if a fair settlement can't be reached, your attorney might advise going to trial.