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Can I Sue a Drunk Driver in New York?

Driving under the influence of drugs (including prescription medications) or alcohol is illegal in all states and New York is no exception. The act of driving while intoxicated (DWI) is frowned upon heavily by law enforcement, local and state governments. When someone drinks alcohol, their judgment, coordination, and ability to drive a vehicle safely change.

A person’s level of “impairment” depends on a variety of factors, including the amount of alcohol they drink, the rate of consumption (how fast they drank the alcohol), the amount of food they had before they started drinking, their gender (women get impaired faster than men), and their body weight (the lighter you are the faster you become impaired). Since impairment is hard for people to judge, they should never drink and drive.

No Quick Way to Get Sober

Unfortunately, there’s no shortcut to getting sober. Drinking coffee or an energy drink or taking a freezing cold shower will not speed up the sobering process. The only thing that sobers someone up is time. In New York, there are several alcohol-related violations, including:

  1. Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
  2. Aggravated DWI
  3. Driving While Ability Impaired by Alcohol (DWAI)
  4. Driving While Ability Impaired by a Single Drug Other than Alcohol (DWAI/Drug)
  5. Driving While Ability Impaired by a Combined Influence of Drugs or Alcohol

Injured by a Drunk or Drugged Driver?

If you were involved in a drunk or drugged driving accident and the impaired driver was caught and arrested, he or she is likely facing one of the above DWI charges. If there is a criminal case pending against them, you may be wondering if the criminal case bars you from filing a personal injury lawsuit against the impaired driver – lots of DWI victims have this question.

The answer is no, a criminal case does not stop you from filing a separate personal injury lawsuit against the drunk driver. In fact, you should file a claim against the impaired driver. There is so much public knowledge about the dangers of impaired driving that people know better than to drink and drive, and put other roadway users at risk. To get your drink driving accident claim started, we invite you to contact our firm!