Car Accidents – What to do if You Think Alcohol Was Involved

10338960_mIf you are in a car accident and you think the other driver may have been intoxicated, you need to take steps right away to protect your legal rights. If you can prove that the other driver had been drinking, it will help you prove negligence on the part of the other driver. You may even be able to collect punitive damages which are not typically available in car accidents.

  • Tell the responding officer you believe the other driver was drinking as soon as possible so that important evidence is not lost, hidden, or disposed of.
  • Keep track of who was actually driving the vehicle, and make sure the officer knows who was driving. Drunk drivers will often switch with a passenger or tell police that a passenger was driving to avoid drunk driving charges.
  • Keep an eye on the other driver and their passengers to see if they are disposing of evidence such as beer cans or bottles. If you see this, point it out to the police officer.
  • Watch for other behaviors used to mask the smell or other signs of intoxication. This could include using breath spray or chewing gum.
  • Do not, under any circumstances, confront the other driver. A drunk driver can quickly become violent, especially if they believe that you are threatening to expose them and they might go to jail.
  • After the accident, obtain a copy of the police report and continue to follow up on any criminal case involving the other driver.
  • Call an accident attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can take over collecting evidence and investigating sources you may not have access to.
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