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Recovering damages when a drunk driver kills a loved one

As we have pointed out in a previous post in this blog, Texas has a serious drunk driving problem. In fact the state has the dubious distinction of leading the nation in fatal drunk driving accidents. Law enforcement is fighting the problem aggressively, and drunk drivers face serious penalties if convicted. Repeat offenders, and those who cause serious injuries or death in an accident, can face decades in prison.

When a family loses a loved one in an accident caused by a drunk driver, the grief can be all the more painful because of the knowledge that the accident was so preventable. One individual's irresponsible decision to drink and drive can devastate a family.

Under Texas law, when a drunk driver causes a death, surviving family members have the right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit and recover damages for their loss. The damages can include compensation for loss of financial support as well as loss of companionship. In a survival action, damages for the victim's pain and suffering before death can also be recovered.

In some cases it is possible to sue not only the drunk driver but the bar or other establishment that served alcohol to the individual when it was obvious they were intoxicated and presented a danger to others. Bringing such a lawsuit, known as a dram shop suit, can result in an additional source for payment of damages.

At Reed & Terry LLP, we understand what families are going through in these situations. We fight aggressively to prove liability on the part of all responsible parties, and to prove the damages our clients are entitled to. Click the link to learn more about your legal options following an accident.

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