On average, drunk driving takes the lives of 28 people a day – one person approximately every hour – according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. As someone who abides by California traffic laws, it can feel unfortunate when someone drunkenly crashes into your vehicle. Even more so if you have suffered injuries, substantial damages, even loss. Though criminal charges are likely to get filed, auto accident lawyers can simultaneously bring a personal injury lawsuit against the defendant as well.

Someone charged with driving under the influence is innocent until proven guilty in California. Why? The consequences and penalties are severe depending on the defendant’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level and how frequently they’ve gotten into a car crash. Keep in mind victims can also share fault under the state’s pure comparative negligence laws. That means the plaintiff can owe damages to the defendant depending on their percentage of involvement in the accident.

When injuries like spinal damage or brain damage are involved, you want to get the most out of your settlement to cover medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of income, or funeral costs (if applicable). At Accident Lawyers Firm, our personal injury attorney can help you obtain damages while their criminal charges are still pending. Jail time is almost always a consequence of first, second, third, and fourth-time offenses. We outline what it could cost adults below:

  1. First offense: Up to six months in jail, a $390 to $1,000 fine, license suspension for up to 6 months, and a restricted license for 6-12 months
  2. Second offense: 96 to 1 year in jail, a $390 to $1,000 fine, license suspension for up to 2 years, and a restricted license for a year
  3. Third offense: 120 days to 1 year in jail, fines up to $1800, license suspension for 3 years, and restricted license for 2 years

The consequences differ for minors who were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For more information on how to handle a recent DUI accident, it’s best to reach out to an experienced attorney.