People who are involved in a drunk driving accident may accordingly face either the option or necessity of becoming involved with the court system as a result and response. This consideration can be most simply gleaned according to whether the person in question was involved in the drunk driving accident as a driver or as a passenger or pedestrian. Moreover, legal responsibility for drunk driving accidents will generally be relegated to the individual whose intoxication can be shown, based on verifiable and admissible evidence collected at the scene of the drunk driving accident or soon afterwards, to have caused it.
Defendants in drunk driving accidents
Defendants in drunk driving accidents will accordingly be open to the application both of civil and criminal legal remedies designed to hold them to their responsibility for the ill-effects suffered by any other individual affected by the drunk driving accident.
The harmful consequences of drunk driving accidents can be felt either by persons who were in close enough proximity to the drunk driving accident to be in danger of or exposed to harm, or by people who suffered the loss of property and consequent financial ill-effects as a result. Drunk driving accident defendants may accordingly be compelled, pending the results of court proceedings and the decisions of individuals empowered to exercise authority over them, to make up either for the violation of legal statutes or harmful consequences to others.
Criminal Ramifications for Drunk Driving Accident Defendants
People involved in a drunk driving accident may be charged with either a felony or misdemeanor, with the former option being the most undesirable and potentially capable of bringing seriously adverse legal consequences. As with a defendant’s vulnerability to litigation, this determination may be made most decisively in regard to whether drunk driving accidents cause serious bodily harm or property damage to a person other than the individual responsible.
In making the case, the prosecution may choose to emphasize either the results of the driver’s erratic driving or the demonstrable causes which can be shown to have led to it.
Sentencing Methods for Drunk Driving Accident Defendants
Drunk driving accident defendants may be sentenced either with an emphasis on punitive or remedial methods, as may depend on the severity of the particular criminal offense, and may also incorporate both approaches. Drunk driving accidents leading to misdemeanor charges may be more likely to result in remedial measures.
If a drunk driving accident can be reliably tied to long-term problems with behavior pattern and dependency issues, then the defendant may be compelled to enroll into an Alcoholics Anonymous class. A prison term, on the other hand, is more likely to be the main sentencing method for felony-level drunk driving accidents.
Civil Ramifications for Drunk Driving Accident Defendants
Drunk driving accidents can also expose the people found or suspected to be responsible to the ill-effects of civil litigation. In this way, the people injured or placed in significant and immediate danger by the intoxicated driver, or their legal guardians or loved ones, can press civil suits to recover damages from the defendant.
Victims of Drunk Driving Accidents
People who are adversely affected by drunk driving accidents can most directly make up for these ill-effects by pursuing civil suits for the recovery of damages from the defendant. Additionally, drunk driving accident victims may also be called upon to give testimony in a court of law in the course of criminal proceedings, particularly if they witnessed either the defendant’s erratic driving or prior alcohol consumption.