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Drunk Drivers and Fatal Car Accidents Rise During Holidays

More drunk drivers will be on the road as winter approaches. Holiday celebrations with family, friends and coworkers surrounding Thanksgiving and Christmas are often accompanied by alcoholic drinks, leading to more intoxicated drivers on Florida roads. December and November had the second and third highest number of fatal crashes last year, according to the 2009 Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle report.

Fatal car accidents caused by drunk driving are preventable and inexcusable. Rather than celebrating the holidays, some families will be devastated by the loss of loved ones in fatal car crashes caused by drunk drivers. When drivers make the decision to get on the road after drinking, they should be held responsible for the harm that they cause.

Filing a Wrongful Death Suit After a Fatal Car Accident

Florida law allows certain surviving family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit after a death caused by another’s negligence or wrongful act. No amount of money can take away the pain suffered from the unexpected loss of a loved one. However, a wrongful death lawsuit after a fatal car accident allows the victims’ family to recover financial compensation for damages including the following:

  • Funeral and end-of-life expenses
  • Loss of earnings
  • Loss of companionship
  • Medical expenses incurred as a result of the accident

Punitive Damages Also Available

Punitive damages may also be recoverable after a fatal car accident caused by drunk driving. “Punitive” means “punishing” or “punishment.” Florida law allows a family to seek punitive damages in fatal accidents caused by reckless behavior such as drunk driving, as a means of deterring this behavior in the future. Drunk driving is inherently reckless and demonstrates a gross lack of care. Courts often allow the family of a drunk-driving accident victim to seek punitive damages after proving the driver was intoxicated with no further proof of recklessness.

A Wrongful Death Attorney Can Help

If someone you love has been killed in a car accident caused by a drunk driver, contact a knowledgeable wrongful death attorney, like those at Greenberg Stone and Urbano An experienced attorney will thoroughly evaluate your claim and help you understand your legal options. For more information, visit us at

Related Resource: Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles “Traffic Crash Statistics Report 2009”

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