By this point, everyone should know that driving under the influence of alcohol is against the law in Georgia and throughout the rest of the United States. Unfortunately, people continue to drive drunk on a regular basis, and even sometimes when they are driving while they are on the job. Drunk delivery drivers, truck drivers, couriers, and others who drive for work while impaired are capable of causing extremely serious accidents that can result in devastating injuries. Fortunately, in many cases, victims can recover compensation for the accident-related losses they’ve sustained.
When Drunk Drivers Are Working, It May Be Possible to Hold their Employers Liable
Under a legal doctrine known as respondeat superior, an employer can be held liable for the tortious acts of its employee that occur within the scope of employment. What this means is that if a driver was drunk and caused an accident while driving for work, it may be possible to hold his or her employer liable for any injuries the driver caused. There is an exception for situations where an employee is off on a purely personal errand, sometimes referred to as a “frolic.” For example, if a drunk delivery driver got into an accident on his or her way to drop off a shipment, anyone injured would likely be able to hold the driver’s employer liable. If, on the other hand, the employee got into an accident while he or she had pulled off of the delivery route to pick up another beer, the employee himself or herself would be the only liable party.
How to Protect Your Rights if an On-the-Job Drunk Driver Injures You
If a drunk driver who was on the job runs into you, there are certain steps you should take to protect your legal rights. These include the following:
- Call the police, even if the accident was not particularly serious or was just a fender bender. A police determination that the driver was drunk at the time of the accident can make it much easier to recover compensation. In addition, if the driver is under the influence, you should do what you can to get him or her off the road to keep others safe.
- Seek medical attention and request a thorough medical evaluation. It’s important that your injuries are properly identified and documented, both for your health and for any insurance claim that you will make in the future.
- Do not accept a settlement offer from the driver, an insurance company, or the driver’s employer before talking to an attorney. You only get one chance to settle your case, so it’s critical that any settlement you accept fully compensates you for all of your losses.
- Talk to an attorney as soon as you can. Any delay in starting your claim can reduce your chances of obtaining the compensation to which you are legally entitled.
Injured By a Drunk Driver? Call a Gwinnett County, Georgia, Personal Injury Lawyer Today to Discuss Your Case
If you suffered an injury caused by a drunk driver while he or she was working or not, there’s a good chance that Georgia law entitles you to compensation. Attorney David Brauns is an experienced personal injury lawyer who has the skill and experience to bring your case to the most favorable resolution possible. To schedule a free case evaluation with Mr. Brauns, contact us online or call our office today at (404) 348-0889.