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Punitive Damages in a Drunk Driving Crash in Georgia

Everyone knows that you should not drink and drive. Action groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving and government public service campaigns have done a great job in recent years of raising awareness and educating people regarding the dangers and tragic consequences of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  Unfortunately, as a recent multi-vehicle accident on I-75 in Clayton County demonstrates, some people either won’t listen, or don’t care.

In the early hours of a Friday morning, a driver struck a pedestrian and caused a chain reaction crash involving six additional vehicles. After checking the blood alcohol levels of the drivers, the police charged six of the seven drivers with DUI. Yes, you read that correctly, six of the seven drivers involved in the accident were drunk.

In light of that statistic, it is not surprising that Georgia has decided not to cap the amount of punitive damage that can be awarded in drunk driving cases. Most other states cap punitive damage awards for drunk driving accidents at $250,000.  In a lot of ways, Georgia’s policy makes sense. The goal is that the potential of an unlimited punitive damage liability acts as both a deterrent and a punishment. Is getting behind the wheel of a car after you have had a few drinks really worth potentially losing everything? Hopefully, most people don’t think so. Further, most people would agree that if you do drive drunk and hurt someone else, you probably deserve to lose everything.

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle crash involving a drunk driver, you may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit and seek an unlimited punitive damage award. Contact an Atlanta automobile accident lawyer specializing in these types of cases today.