West Virginia Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer

 If you need a drunk driving accident lawyer, call Warner Law Offices, PLLC, in Charleston, West Virginia. Drunk driving accidents can cause severe injuries, so it’s important to have an experienced and knowledgeable attorney advocating for you. We will seek damages separate from any criminal case prosecutors may bring. The Warner Law Offices team has decades of experience helping victims of drunk driving accidents successfully recover compensation. Contact our office in Charleston, West Virginia, or call us at (304) 345-6789 today to schedule a free consultation.

 Your world changes the minute a drunk driver hits you. Hospital bills start coming in, and you might need to repair or replace your car. The insurance companies will also start calling. You need someone you can trust to protect you and your interests. Let a West Virginia car accident lawyer at Warner Law Offices PLLC help you navigate these challenges. Since 2000, we have been helping clients in West Virginia and the surrounding areas hold drunk drivers accountable for the damage they cause. 

How Warner Law Offices Can Help You After a Drunk Driving Accident

Our drunk driving accident attorneys work with you one-on-one. You will know your lawyer and be able to contact them whenever you need help. Our attorneys are here to help make the legal process as stress-free as possible for you. 

We will help you with the following:

  • Reviewing local and state investigations
  • Conducting an independent inquiry
  • Hiring a private investigator, if needed
  • Gathering and reviewing all evidence
  • Finding all possible ways you can recover financially
  • Preparing and filing all necessary claims and documents
  • Fighting to get you the most compensation possible 

Drunk driving accidents are often complicated, so we tailor our approach to your unique needs and case. 

If we can’t reach a favorable settlement, we will take your case to court. The Warner Law Offices team is always prepared to stand up for you and protect your rights.

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Do I Need a Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer?

Yes, you absolutely do. The time after an accident is very stressful. Your main focus in that period should be on healing. Let us take care of the legal aspects of your accident and deal with insurance companies for you. 

Drunk driving is a serious legal matter. Building a strong case for compensation requires time, resources, and a comprehensive understanding of West Virginia law. An experienced drunk driving accident attorney will know how to gather key evidence and how to present that evidence to help you get the best outcome possible. 

What type of compensation can I receive for a drunk driving accident?

A drunk driving accident can leave you injured and unable to work while you recover. You might also face car repair bills or need a new car. While receiving compensation cannot turn back the clock, it can help you cover your losses and make ends meet while you recover.

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Who Will Pay for My Drunk Driving Accident Losses?

In general, insurance companies end up paying for most drunk driving incidents. West Virginia is a so-called “at-fault” state, which means that the insurer for the party responsible for the accident must cover any injuries and property damage. Since the drunk driver is most likely responsible for your accident, that driver’s insurer will probably be on the hook for your damages.

However, your insurance company might pay if the drunk driver is uninsured or underinsured. In West Virginia, all motorists must add uninsured motorist coverage to their car insurance policy. The minimum requirements for uninsured motorist coverage are:

  • Bodily injury: $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident
  • Property damage: $25,000 per accident

You may also have elected to purchase underinsured motorist coverage with your policy. If the drunk driver’s policy fails to cover all of your damages, you may make a claim under your underinsured motorist coverage for the excess. 

Warner Law Offices can help you deal with insurance companies and negotiate on your behalf so you don’t inadvertently harm your chances of recovery.

How much money can you expect from a settlement?

Because every client’s injuries and losses are unique, there is no way to calculate an average drunk driving accident settlement. Usually, you’ll seek compensation for out-of-pocket costs, such as medical bills and car repairs. Other types of damages you may seek compensation for include:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Physical therapy
  • Disability
  • Lost wages
  • Property damage
  • Pain and suffering
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Emotional distress
  • Inconvenience
  • Lost earning capacity 

In some cases, you may be able to seek punitive damages as well. West Virginia has a $500,000 cap on punitive damages.  

The amount of compensation you can seek will depend on your losses. For example, if you require ongoing medical care because of your injury, you can pursue compensation for those future expenses. If your injury forces you to stop working, you can seek compensation for your lost wages. 

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West Virginia Drunk Driving Laws

West Virginia law allows you to sue the drunk driver who hit you. A civil lawsuit is separate from a criminal case the state brings. Most civil cases settle out of court, but some cases do go to trial. 

Do They go to Jail?

A jail sentence can be imposed if authorities pursue a successful criminal prosecution against the drunk driver. In West Virginia, penalties in criminal drunk driving cases range from $100 to $500 and a six-month driver’s license revocation for a first offense. For a third offense, penalties range from $3,000 to $5,000, one to three years in prison, and a lifetime driver’s license revocation. If someone dies, the driver can get up to ten years in prison. The court may also order the drunk driver to pay restitution to any victims. 

A civil case allows you to sue for damages. If the defendant in a civil case loses, they pay you monetary compensation. Jail time is never on the table in a civil case. In civil cases, the compensation the drunk driver has to pay you will be determined by your losses, including your medical bills, lost wages, repair bills, and pain and suffering. 

How To Prove Fault in a Drunk Driving Accident

You prove a drunk driver is at fault and liable for your damages by gathering and presenting evidence. Relevant evidence may include:

  • Witness statements
  • Police reports
  • Video recordings
  • Photographs
  • Property damage
  • Physical evidence from the scene, such as debris and skidmarks
  • Medical records

Depending on the case, your lawyer may also work with an expert witness who can provide an opinion about how the accident happened. 

What Is Comparative Fault?

Comparative fault is a law that comes into play when both parties share some degree of fault. For example, if the other driver was drunk and your phone distracted you, both of you would likely share some degree of responsibility. West Virginia is a modified comparative negligence state. Therefore, you must be 50 percent or less at fault to recover compensation. 

If you are partially at fault, your compensation will be proportionally reduced by your share of the fault. For example, if the court decides you were 25 percent at fault and the drunk driver was 75 percent at fault, you will get 75 percent of the damages awarded by the court.

What Do You Do After a Drunk Driving Accident?

If you are involved in a drunk driving accident, take the following steps:

  • Identify your injuries and call 911.
  • Call the police. 
  • Document the scene by taking photos or notes of things like skid marks, debris, traffic signals and signs, and property damage.
  • Exchange contact and insurance information with the other drivers. 
  • Get contact information from any witnesses.
  • Contact Warner Law Offices in West Virginia so one of our drunk driver accident attorneys can start helping you as soon as possible. 

Contact Us Today for a Free Consultation

At Warner Law Offices, we can help you with many kinds of personal injury cases. Our top-rated attorneys have decades of combined experience helping clients injured in auto accidents such as head-on collisions recover compensation. 

Besides drunk driving, we also handle distracted driving cases and hit-and-run accidents in Charleston, WV. We also represent clients who have been injured in bicycle accidents or who have suffered pedestrian injuries in West Virginia.

In a split second, a drunk driver can change your life. At Warner Law Offices, our skilled and experienced attorneys are dedicated to helping our injured clients seek justice and secure the compensation they need and deserve. From day one, we will take care of every step of the legal process so that you can focus on what matters most—your health and recovery. 

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Attorney Bobby Warner
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Bobby Warner

Bobby has received many accolades throughout the years from both his peers in the legal community, as well as the media. The National Trial Lawyers association named Bobby a Top 100 Trial Lawyer and he has been selected as a Member of the Nation’s Top One Percent. Additionally, he has been named a Best Attorneys of America by Rue Ratings, which also named Warner Law Offices to its Best Law Firms of America.

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