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Should I Hire an Attorney After Being Injured by a Drunk Driver?

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If you have been involved in a an SUV or car accident in the Tampa Bay area call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353.
Police line in front of a totaled truck on Bayyshore Boulevard

On January 9, 2020, a runner was struck and killed by a speeding truck on Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa, Florida. Benjamin Douglas Ehas, 31, was arrested and charged with DUI manslaughter. The speed limit had been reduced in that stretch of Bayshore after a 2018 fatal pedestrian crash where a mother and her child were struck and killed crossing the Boulevard. The speed limit lowered to 35 mph in that part of Bayshore after the 2018 fatal pedestrian crash.

The driver of the truck was arrested and charged with DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide. Tampa police said Ehas had a blood-alcohol content level of 0.234 at the time of the crash. That is three times the legal limit. According to witnesses, the truck was traveling at about 60 mph when the crash happened. The runner was struck and knocked into the water. Witnesses jumped into the water to render aid but the man later died at the hospital.

According to the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, there were 839 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities in Florida in 2017. Intoxicated drivers remain the biggest cause of traffic fatalities both in Florida and the U.S. Nearly 11,000 people, about one-third of the nation’s 37,000-plus traffic fatalities, died in 2016 and 2017 due to drivers impaired by alcohol, according to the Palm Beach Post.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that every day, almost 30 people in the United States die in drunk driving crashes, that’s one person every 48 minutes in 2017. Drunk driving crashes claim more than 10,000 lives per year. There were 10,874 deaths from drunk driving crashes in 2017. Approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States involve drunk drivers, according to the NHTSA.

Why Should I Contact a Drunk-Driver Accident Lawyer?

Drunk-driver accidents require special attention. Florida law gives drunk driving victims the right to sue for punitive damages. It is a way to punish a drunk driver for willful, wanton, and reckless conduct. If you have been involved in a drunk- driver accident, you may have a right to actual damages and punitive damages.

What Are Punitive Damages?

Punitive damages are awarded in addition to actual damages in certain circumstances. Punitive damages are considered punishment and are typically awarded when a driver’s behavior is found to be especially harmful, such as when someone drives drunk.

Can A Drunk-Driver Accident Attorney Negotiate a Settlement? After a drunk-driver accident, an attorney may contact the drunk driver’s insurance company to negotiate a settlement for costs incurred as a result of the accident. If negotiations with the insurance company are unsuccessful or unsatisfactory, a drunk-driver accident attorney may be able to file a civil suit against the negligent party.

What Compensation Can Be Recovered?

In negotiations or litigation, an attorney may be able to help you recover compensation for the following:

  • Past and Future Medical Expenses: Drunk-driver accident victims may receive compensation for emergency room visits, hospital care, surgery, therapy and rehabilitation.
  • Lost Wages: Drunk-driver accident victims may recover compensation for the period of time that they could not work.
  • Pain and Suffering: Drunk-driver accident victims can claim compensation for pain and suffering after the accident.
  • Mental Anguish: Drunk-driver accident victims and families may also receive compensation for emotional pain and suffering such as feelings of fright, embarrassment, nervousness, worry, and grief.
  • Loss of Consortium: A surviving spouse may be awarded compensation for the loss of services, assistance, aid, society, and companionship of his or her loved one. Surviving parents may be awarded compensation for the loss of love, affection, and companionship of their minor children. Minor children may be awarded compensation for the loss of services, assistance, aid, society, and companionship of their parents.
  • Punitive Damages: In addition to actual damages, Florida law gives drunk driving victims the right to sue for punitive damages. It is a way to punish a drunk driver for willful, wanton, and reckless conduct.

If you or a loved one have been injured, or if you have lost a loved one in a drunk driver accident, you may be entitled to compensation.

Why Fernandez & Hernandez?

Fernandez & Hernandez are advocates for those injured by drunk-drivers. If you or a loved one have been injured by a drunk driver and need help getting compensation for your injuries or loss, call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353.

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Martin J. Hernandez, Esq.
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Dominique mason
Dominique mason
16:18 29 May 20
I had nothing but good experiences with Martin. He goes to great lengths to get the job done and makes sure you are... aware of all of your responsibilities. He will talk to you one on one and keep you up to speed. I am sincerely grateful and appreciative of his hard work and effort in my case.read more
Dustin Walker
Dustin Walker
12:56 26 May 20
Martin handled my case well. He was on top of everything and it seemed like my case went smoothly. I actually enjoyed... meeting with the doctor he referred me to. I wouldn't hesitate to refer Mr. Hernandez to anyone that needed legal help.read more
Jesse Jimenez
Jesse Jimenez
15:05 15 May 20
Martin and his team got me paid very fast. I got into an accident and 30 days later they got me more money for my car... and all the money there was and all within 30 days. These are the best injury lawyers in Tampa. Hire them and don't go anywhere else.read more
albert mckinzi
albert mckinzi
13:16 13 May 20
I am very thankful for the wonderful job that Martin and his awesome office staff did to settle a case for my grandma.... As people age, they do have trouble understanding legal matters and terminology & can get bewildered at times. They were very patient and explained everything in a way that could easily be understood. In this fast-paced world finding someone to have patience with older people shows true care for a client and their level of integrity, which means the world to us! I highly recommend them to anyone in need of his services. Our only disappointment was not knowing about him sooner. Thank you so much.read more
Luis Atencio
Luis Atencio
00:55 07 May 20
The right attorney for the right legal assistance! Definitely five stars for the great legal assistance of the... attorney Hernandez and his staff. Very knowledgeable and lavish with his time, I feel very satisfied with his assistance as well with the help of his assistant Sofia, which led to a satisfactory results on my case.read more
Valerie Anderson
Valerie Anderson
18:17 28 Apr 20
First I want to say Thank you Mr Hernandez for your service in our community. I truly recommend Martin for your legal... needs. My Mom had a case pending when she passed.not re Not related to the accident but Martin went over and beyond to make sure me and my brothers was compensated. Keep up the good work Mr Hernandez we ruly appreciate you.read more
Jinnifer Stanley
Jinnifer Stanley
15:39 07 Apr 20
I was in a car accident and like some people weren’t sure how to handle it. I called a few lawyers but Mr. Hernandez... was the one who appeared to be more interested, not only as a lawyer but also as a human being. He made the process very smooth. He was a very great man and a lawyer. I am very thankful to him. I would recommend him to anyone.read more
Daniel Fernandez
Daniel Fernandez
21:18 05 Mar 20
Martin Hernandez is highly regarded lawyer and a 5 star attorney. He and his staff are on top of their game. We... highly recommend this law firm and will tell you that you will not regret hiring this law firm.read more
Liliana Alvarez
Liliana Alvarez
19:33 02 Mar 20
Martin Hernandez and Daniel Hernandez are the best lawyers ever. They helped us a lot and we got great results. Thank... you!read more
Benjamin Blevins
Benjamin Blevins
17:19 21 Feb 20
This is the best auto accident lawyer in Tampa. I was involved in a car accident and did not know what to do, who to... call, who to see, find a doctor that could help me, or even what to say. I called Martin Hernandez and he sat down with me and explained everything from beginning to end. He quickly resolved me my case and got me the most amount of money possible. When people ask me who is the best lawyer in Tampa? I always Martin Hernandez is the best auto accident attorney in Tampa..read more
dylan harper
dylan harper
17:09 20 Feb 20
Martin was able to explain my case to me very well. I got good advice on what my particular options were and an honest... assessment of what I should expect going forward. When the world is falling around you its best to ask the smartest, hardest working person you can find what to do, and then do it.read more
Carmina Wilson
Carmina Wilson
16:39 19 Feb 20
I had an absolutely amazing experience with Martin’s firm. I had incurred personal injuries as a result of a bad auto... accident. His team not only treated me with respect, but they also made me feel like I was their only client. They handled my case with an astounding amount of expertise. Martin and his team is a lifesaver.read more
Katie Gulledge
Katie Gulledge
16:43 12 Feb 20
Mr. Hernandez represented me for my car accident in March 2019 and he was able to get my maximum settlement in less... than a year! He genuinely cares and has a great team of assistants that were able to answer any of my questions through the past few months.read more
cedrick wilson
cedrick wilson
15:17 05 Feb 20
I was in an accident lately and he was suggested by a friend. He met with me in person and was very punctual. He was... very calm and determined throughout my entire situation. Overall, I was extremely satisfied and impressed with Martin in reaching very positive results. I would recommend him and his office to anyone for solid advice and bottom-line results. Thank you again!read more
Tamika Jones
Tamika Jones
22:29 06 Jan 20
My experience with Martin Hernandez has been stressful not on his part. Martin has been very patient with me when I... wanted to pull every strand of hair from my head. From day one he took time to explain the process of how this was going to be but he would be there to hold my hand all the way and he did just that. His paralegal Angela walked with and held both my hands as well during all of this. When I couldn't get ahold