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Drunk driving is a factor in nearly half of all fatal vehicle accidents in Rhode Island. A 2008 study by the Federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration found that 20% of Rhode Island adult drivers – or one of every five motorists aged 18 or older — had driven in the past year while under the influence of alcohol.
That same study found that 6.8% of Rhode Island adult drivers operated their vehicles in the past year while under the influence of illicit drugs – the highest percentage of any state.
When a drunk driving accident results in serious personal injury or death to an innocent victim, legal action can hold the responsible party liable for their reckless and dangerous conduct. If you are hurt in a car accidentby a drunk driver, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the driver or the company that employed the driver if a commercial vehicle is involved.
In some cases the bar or liquor store that served the driver can be held accountable for injuries to an innocent third party.
Establishments can be liable for “negligent” or “reckless” service in certain cases where the person they served later caused an accident. Accident victims may file a claim of negligent service if the driver who was served alcohol was a minor or visibly intoxicated. The driver can also bring a negligence claim against the bar if he or she was a minor. A bar may be liable for reckless service if the server encouraged the driver to drink excessively.
The attorneys at Gemma Law Associates, Inc. Inc. have filed many claims on behalf of drunk driving victims. We have a thorough understanding of Rhode Island’s Liquor Liability Act and we evaluate each case to determine whether other parties in addition to the driver are responsible. Our firm also understands that no legal action will reverse a serious injury or the loss of a loved one – but we can hold drunk drivers accountable for their actions. We serve clients throughout Rhode Island and in the communities of Providence, Newport, Bristol, Warwick, Cranston, Woonsocket and Pawtucket.
Holding another driver or business liable for a drunk driving accident can be complicated because scientific evidence and expert testimony is often needed. Consulting an experienced law firm is important to ensure a successful case.
If you’ve suffered a serious personal injury due to a drunk driving accident, contact Gemma Law Associates, Inc. toll free or submit an online contact form. We’ve been helping clients in Rhode Island for more than 45 years – and we can help you.