There is a common misconception that if a drunk driver is involved in an accident, that they were the ones responsible, but this isn’t always the case. For example, if the drunk driver was waiting at a red light and was rear-ended by someone who was sober, the accident would still be the sober driver’s fault. Unfortunately, because many drunk drivers mistakenly believe they will be seen as the one at fault, they will often flee the scene of an accident, which can make the situation drastically worse. If you have been involved in an accident while driving under the influence, it is critical you stay at the scene and contact a Vista drunk driving defense attorney as soon as possible.
When a drunk driver has been involved in any type of accident, he or she will generally be charged with a DUI, even if the accident wasn’t his or her fault. If someone was injured or killed in the accident, things can become a lot more complicated. If the accident was caused by the drunk driver, the DUI may be increased to a felony, which could result in a lengthy prison sentence. Additionally, many courts will require those convicted of drunk driving to pay restitution to the victims of accidents related to their intoxicated driving. Sentence increases and restitution do not apply though if the other driver was at fault for the accident, which is why it is so important to work with a top Vista DUI attorney if you have been involved in an accident while intoxicated.
In many cases, the police will assume the drunk driver is at fault in an accident if the blame is not automatically obvious. When you work with a Vista DUI lawyer like Peter M. Liss though, you may be able to prove the accident was caused by the other person with the aid of investigators and accident reconstruction expert. This can ensure that you will not face any of the enhanced DUI penalties associated with an accident that resulted in injury or death.
Even if the accident was your fault, the judge or prosecutor has the discretion to reduce the felony charge to a misdemeanor and a Vista DUI defense attorney is critical in encouraging them to do so.
If you were involved in an accident while drunk driving, but believe you were not at fault, please call Vista drunk driving defense lawyer Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050 to schedule a free consultation so you may discuss your situation.
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