How to Deal With a First Time DUI With Accident
Each year 1,001,329 people get arrested for driving under the influence. For the majority of these people, it’s the first time. For some, the situation is even worse with a first-time DUI with an accident.
Dealing with a car accident or a DUI is complicated enough individually, and they only worsen when combined. Some laws affect the handling of both insurance companies and future consequences to your actions.
This guide will help you understand what you need to do following a DUI accident.
Speak With a DUI Accident Lawyer
The first step in dealing with your situation is to know and understand the law. The best way to do this is by speaking with a lawyer who handles DUI and car accidents. You can look online for a local attorney, such as www.tprentisslaw.com/sacramento-office.
Schedule a consultation and bring all of your documents with you. Ask the attorney about their experience and suggested course of action for your case. Then, if you feel confident with the lawyer’s services, you can agree to work together.
Will You Get Jail Time?
You may hope that you only get probation because it’s your first DUI offense. However, this isn’t always the case. Because there was a traffic accident in addition to the DUI, the situation is a bit more complicated.
It will also depend on the laws in your state. There are certain situations where jail time is unavoidable.
Is the Accident Covered?
Some insurance policies state that the policy won’t cover damages in an accident resulting from the commission of a felony. This includes drunk driving. What this means for you is that you may not have insurance coverage for the accident.
With no insurance coverage, you are now personally liable for the damages. You will need a lawyer to represent you if another party involved in the accident files a lawsuit against you for their damages.
Your Insurance Will Change
Your license will likely get immediately suspended when you’re arrested. Do not drive with a suspended license, as this will make your situation significantly worse. If you must have a license to get to work or drive your kids to school, then you can ask about special hardship licenses.
Once you get your license back, expect your insurance to be more expensive. Some insurance companies may even reject you because they won’t insure those with a DUI. In some states, you have to buy special insurance, called SR-22 or FR-44.
Prepare for Expenses
Getting a DUI is expensive. You need to prepare for the cost of the court fees and fines, attorney, possible addiction treatment, auto testing unit, and increased insurance. Then you’ll also pay for the lawyer for the auto accident, pay to repair your vehicle, and pay for the damages of the other party involved in the accident.
Handle Your First-Time DUI With an Accident
As you can see, there is a lot to contend with when facing a first-time DUI with an accident. You need to prepare for multiple legal, financial, and life consequences. The first step is to hire qualified legal representation to help guide you through the entire process.
Check out our other legal articles for more helpful guidance on common legal topics.