I often represent those who are victims of drivers who are DUI either by alcohol or drugs. These types of accidents are quite common, but most people are quite surprised to learn that their case is not valued by the insurance company more because of the DUI than any other type of car or auto accident. The reason why insurance won’t pay anymore is that the aggravating factor of being drunk or high behind the wheel is an issue for punitive damages and insurance companies simply do not cover these types of damages. What is relevant to the insurance company is: who was at fault and what are the extent of the injuries? So, even though you saw the driver who hurt you get arrested by the police, it may be hard to fathom and may infuriate you that the insurance company does not put a premium on your case, but that is unfortunately, the reality of the insurance business.
What should you do if you are injured by someone who is DUI?
You should hand the claim like any other auto accident case. The good news in a DUI case is that liability will be in your favor. That means that it will be very difficult for the other side to blame the accident on you. The next step is to receive medical treatment. We always recommend that you treat with a doctor who is a specialist. Some people mistakenly believe that their family or primary care doctor is sufficient. Unfortunately, those doctors are not used to the complexities of auto accident insurance claims and do not handle the treatment properly. The next step is to follow your doctor’s advice throughout the case. At the end of the treatment, we then compile the medical records and make an insurance demand. Our goal is to settle the claim at that time without the necessity of litigation.