When drunk drivers injure people, juries often award higher damages to the victim because of the outrageous conduct of driving drunk. Punitive damages are those which deter the defendant to participate in the same behavior again and often will come into play in a court case. Punitive or exemplary damages are an award of additional money beyond your actual losses to punish the drunk driver for his or her conduct.
To recover punitive damages, you have the burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence, either direct or circumstantial, that the drunk driver acted with what the courts refer to as “an evil mind.” This required state of mind may be shown by, for instance, demonstrating that the drunk driver consciously pursued a course of conduct knowing that it created a substantial risk of significant harm to others.
However, intoxication alone, in the absence of other compelling circumstances, may not warrant punitive damages under Arizona law. The degree of intoxication of the driver along with the circumstances surrounding the drunk driver’s conduct play a role in whether or not punitive damages can be awarded. Therefore, it is critical to have an attorney experienced in drunk driving cases prepare your case and develop the evidence so that you have the best chance to obtain all of the compensation to which you are entitled under the law.
If you were injured in a motor vehicle crash caused by a drunk driver in Arizona, or if a loved one has died because of a drunk driver, Mueller Law Group will help you get justice. We represent the victims and families of those who have been injured or killed by a drunk driver. Having our attorneys’ extensive legal knowledge and experience on your side is just one of the many reasons why you will benefit from contacting us. So, when you go up against the insurance company, “put our experts on your side!” TM
Call us now at 602-222-9800 or e-mail us if you have any questions or if you want more information. Or, you may schedule an appointment to discuss your case with our principal attorney and former government prosecutor, George Mueller, who personally handles all accident injury and death cases.
If your injuries prevent you from coming to our office, he will visit you at your home or the hospital. This is just one small example of what we mean when we say that we are accessible and available to our clients.
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