Hit by a drunk driver in St. Louis, MO?

A car accident is already such an infuriating experience. It’s only made worse when it’s the fault of an irresponsible drunk driver. The need for justice is heavy, especially when you’ve sustained significant injuries as a result of their negligent criminal behavior.

While drunk drivers are prosecuted in criminal court, you still need the legal help of a St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyer in order to take civil action. Whether you want to bring a personal injury lawsuit or a wrongful death lawsuit, an experienced car accident attorney is essential in any car accident case.

As a drunk driving accident victim, you have enough on your plate. Let Jett Legal help ease the burden, starting with a free case evaluation.

Drunk Driving Laws in Missouri

Each year, 25% to 30% of fatal Missouri crashes involve drunk drivers. Therefore, the chances that you may end up in a drunk driving accident aren’t necessarily small.

Since there’s so much risk in driving under the influence, driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) over 0.08% is prohibited and punishable by law in the Show-Me State. An intoxicated driver may be charged with a felony under Missouri law if they cause an accident resulting in injury or death or if they abandon the scene of the crash.

Possible Drunk Driving Accident Injuries

When someone is driving while intoxicated, their reflexes are slower and their response time in urgent traffic situations is longer. As a result, drunk driving crashes can cause devastating injuries since the driver is often going faster and driving more recklessly than in a typical car accident case.

Impaired driving accidents often result in injuries that include:

  • Lacerations and burns
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Organ damage
  • Broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Head injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Wrongful death

If you or a loved one have sustained serious or catastrophic injuries as a result of intoxicated drivers, drunk driving accident lawyers can help you seek fair compensation for all your damages.

What Damages Can Be Recovered After St. Louis Drunk Driving Accidents?

In any car accident, there are typically two different types of damages that can be recovered: Economic and non-economic damages. In cases where the at-fault driver was intoxicated, the injured person may also be able to seek punitive damages.

Economic Damages

Also called “compensatory damages,” economic damages are those that cause the injury victims direct financial loss. They can include:

Economic damages are verifiable and easily calculated using car repair estimates, medical records, and wage statements.

Non-economic Damages

Not all loss experienced after an accident can be easily measured, and that’s where non-economic damages come into play.

Non-economic damages can include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional trauma
  • Disability or disfigurement
  • Reduced earning capabilities
  • Loss of enjoyment in life
  • Loss of companionship in cases of wrongful death

These are the losses that, while they’re more difficult to put a price tag on, are often even more devastating than direct financial costs experienced by the injury victim.

Punitive Damages

When an at-fault party has acted in a particularly reckless or deliberate fashion and has caused injury or other damages, Missouri courts may award punitive damages.

The purpose of punitive damages in cases of drunk driving accidents is to punish the culprit and make an example of them, hopefully leading to other individuals being deterred from behaving in a similar way.

Intoxicated driving is known to be dangerous and reckless behavior, so it’s possible that punitive damages may be piled on top of any economic and non-economic damages in a drunk driving case.

An Experienced Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Can Help

Drunk driving injuries are often significant and more frequently lead to fatalities. Those who survive will see that the expense of treating serious injuries might be very high.

A person with a permanent disability can face continued medical bills or long-term care for the rest of their lives. Because of this, the costs associated with a DUI accident might reach thousands of dollars.

A St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyer can assist you in getting fair compensation if a drunk driver has harmed you. Our St. Louis drunk driving accident attorneys are available right now. Contact our office to schedule a free case review.

What to Do After a Car Accident with A Drunk Driver

When you’ve been involved in a drunk driving crash, it can be confusing and chaotic, so it’s difficult to figure out what your first move should be. You want to ensure you can recover compensation that’s fair and covers all of your damages.

That’s why it’s so important to know what to do after you are hurt in a car accident.

Step 1: Contact Law Enforcement

Report the DUI accident immediately by dialing 911. It’s crucial for drunk driving cases for it to be determined by law enforcement that the at-fault driver was actually intoxicated, but let the police handle the situation and generate their police report. They may suspect that the driver is under the influence from their assessment, especially if they’re dealing with a visibly intoxicated person.

Step 2: Seek Immediate Medical Attention

As with any personal injury lawsuit, always get medical help right away. Drunk driving accident lawyers will tell you that medical attention is the best chance for a full recovery from your accident injuries.

Additionally, a medical report created shortly after the accident increases the likelihood of receiving fair compensation for your losses.

Step 3: Call a Drunk Driving Accident Attorney

Before you speak with the insurance company about the car accident, get legal guidance from a drunk driving accident lawyer. An insurance company will look out for the best interests of the insurance provider, which sometimes involves the insurance adjuster finding methods to downplay or dismiss your damage claim.

Before you talk to anybody about the accident, be sure you know your legal rights and how to defend your best interests.

Call Jett Legal Law After Drunk Driving Accidents

If you need to file a drunk driving accident claim, contact an attorney with experience in drunk driving crashes. At Jett Legal, we are well-versed in drunk driving accident cases and know how to treat drunk driving victims. Schedule a free case review with us, and we will help to seek justice from the negligent driver.


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FAQ: St. Louis Drunk Driving Accidents

Could I be at fault for a car accident if the other driver was drunk?

Missouri uses a comparative negligence model when determining who was at fault for a car accident. This means that a percentage of fault is assigned to each driver involved.

The driver that shares a larger percentage of the fault is responsible for paying damages—or their insurance company is responsible. However, the amount of the actual settlement awarded may be reduced by the percentage of fault the plaintiff shared.

In drunk driving cases, it’s much more likely that inebriated drivers will share a larger percentage of the fault for the accident, leading to a larger settlement for the plaintiff.

If the other driver was not convicted of a DUI, can I still file a lawsuit?

Yes. While a DUI conviction for the other driver would certainly help your civil claim against them, it doesn’t mean they weren’t at fault for the accident if they’re found not guilty of criminal charges. Experienced personal injury lawyers can make a case that the allegedly drunk driver injured you by being reckless or distracted.

What is the statute of limitations for a drunk driving lawsuit?

The duration of the statute of limitations for drunk driving accidents depends on whether or not the accident was fatal. According to Missouri law, personal injury lawsuits have a five-year time restriction. However, state law states that you have only three years to launch a wrongful death case.

In the aftermath of a drunk driving accident, life can get chaotic. That’s why the DUI accident lawyers at Jett Legal keep close tabs on timelines while they’re contacting doctors and insurance companies regarding your personal injury claim.


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