The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has taken steps to implement a plan in which frequent, statewide sobriety checks are conducted, the use of plea bargaining and diversion programs are prohibited, and tougher penalties against repeat offenders are provided.
However, if you are in an accident with a drunk driver who is at fault, the possibility for punitive damages should be explored.
What are punitive damages for a car accident injury?
Punitive damages are those that are meant to punish the at fault party. They are awarded above and beyond special damages (medical bills, lost wages, etc.) and general damages (pain and suffering).
Louisiana Civil Code Article 2315.4 allows punitive damages in drunk driving accidents when certain conditions are met:
“In addition to general and special damages, exemplary damages may be awarded upon proof that the injuries on which the action is based were caused by a wanton or reckless disregard for the rights and safety of others by a defendant whose intoxication while operating a motor vehicle was a cause in fact of the resulting injuries.”
How is the punitive damage award amount calculated for my car accident injury?
Also, there is no mathematical formula used to decide how much the punitive damages or sum of money will be awarded in a case. Instead, the courts look at all of the circumstances surrounding the accident, including the extent of harm or potential harm caused by the defendant’s misconduct, whether the defendant acted in good faith, whether the conduct was an individual instance or part of a broader pattern, whether the defendant behaved recklessly or maliciously and the wealth of the defendant.
Contact Our Personal Injury Attorneys for Drunk Driving Car Accident Injuries
Remember, if the person at fault for your accident is convicted or pleads guilty to drunk driving, you may be entitled to punitive damages. If you have been involved in a car accident injury with a drunk driver, please contact the personal injury attorneys at Morris Bart, LLC Attorneys at Law today. We offer a free case evaluation with our personal injury attorneys, who will review the details of your case and advise you on the best approach to getting the compensation you deserve for your car accident injuries.