Anyone involved in a road traffic accident and who is the innocent party, has the right to make a drink-driving claim for compensation. This applies if the other driver was under the influence of drink at the time. Drink-driving is an offence and though the driver may not appear to be drunk, if they have a ‘blood alcohol content’ of 80mg per 100ml of blood they are ‘over the limit’ and are driving illegally.
If you are involved in a road traffic accident and suspect the other driver has been drinking, it is essential that you remain at the scene until the police arrive. It is standard procedure, at the scene of an accident, for the police to breathalyse all the drivers involved. If the other driver is deemed to be under the influence of alcohol, they will be arrested.
As far as a claim for road accident compensation is concerned, the evidence that needs to be provided will be the same as if the other driver were sober. In other words, it will be necessary to prove that the other driver was responsible and made no reasonable attempt to avoid the collision.
Proving you were the innocent party
For anyone to gain compensation they have to prove they were the innocent party and were in no way responsible for causing the accident. As far as a road traffic incident is concerned, you will have to show the other driver was entirely to blame. One way of proving this is to take the names and addresses of as any witnesses that were present.
The police who attend the scene will launch their own investigation and it is essential that the name and force number of the investigating officer is recorded. Their findings and evidence could be crucial when it comes to making a successful compensation claim. Also, be sure to check if there is any CCTV footage of the accident, which could also provide valuable evidence.
If you have been injured it is very importance to seek medical attention as quickly as possible. This is not only for your personal well-being; the doctor’s notes will prove to be invaluable when submitting a claim for personal injury. This claim will be even more crucial if a loss of earnings is suffered due to injuries sustained.
Making the drink-driving claim for compensation
The same rules for claiming compensation following a road traffic accident apply whether the driver at fault was under the influence of alcohol or sober. Of course, the guilty party will also face criminal proceedings if he or she is found to have been drink-driving.
When making a claim, it is best to seek the advice of a solicitor who specialises in this type of case. Doing so will boost the chances of any claim being successful if it is contested.
Any claim will be made against the guilty driver and their motor insurance provider. If the driver is uninsured, or disappears from the scene and cannot be traced, you may be able to claim against the Motor Insurance Bureau.
Our solicitors will represent you on a no win, no fee* basis, so even if you lose there will be nothing to pay.
Date Published: August 13, 2013
Author: David Brown