San Francisco DUI Accident Victim Lawyers

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Dedicated San Francisco DUI Accident Victim Lawyers with Legal Insights & Trusted Results

While California imposes very strict DUI laws, the truth remains that drunk or drugged driving continues to cause an untold number of deaths and severe injuries every year in the state. If you’ve been injured because of a DUI accident, call Arash Law at (888) 488-1391 to take advantage of a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the city has more than 3,000 bars. As such, it is one of the most bar-dense cities in the United States, with a ratio of six bars per 10 households. This fact tied San Francisco with Las Vegas for the highest number of bars in the country, behind only Buffalo, New York. The city also boasts 39.3 restaurants per 10 households, which makes San Francisco the most restaurant-rich city in the nation.

In August 2022, KRON-TV reported that South San Francisco saw a 62 percent increase in the number of arrests for driving under the influence (DUI) year-to-date over 2021, with 112 arrests compared to 69 the year before. 

In 2015, KRON also reported that a man stopped near Hickey Boulevard and Camaritas Avenue for an equipment violation had a suspended driver’s license and was in possession of drug paraphernalia and a controlled substance believed to be methamphetamine.

The man was also on the California Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) “DUI Hot List,” a list of drivers with repeat offenses related to DUI. The man’s license was suspended because of two prior DUI convictions, which placed him on the Hot List, a program that identifies drivers with multiple two-point driving convictions, multiple DUI convictions, or multiple convictions for driving with a suspended driver’s license.

Most people are aware of the risks of getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, but there are still many others who take the chance of a run-in with law enforcement after drinking and driving.

There is little doubt that people who decide to drive after consuming alcohol are placing all other drivers on the road at risk of being involved in serious car accidents, but the knowledge alone does not seem to be enough to combat the problem. Every day in California sees another person arrested for DUI and facing criminal charges. Our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers continuously protect the injured’s rights from many of these cases.

Drunk driving is the number one cause of death on American roadways. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that in 2020, the highest percentage of alcohol-impaired drivers was among drivers aged 21–24 and 25–34 (26% each).

When a drunk driver causes a motor vehicle accident, other innocent people may suffer catastrophic injuries because of the crash. While the criminal justice system can certainly impose harsh penalties on drunk drivers, victims must rely on civil law to recover financial compensation for their losses.

A drunk driving accident can be a unique kind of personal injury case because drunk driving crashes are often eligible for punitive damages, which are a rare award that California Civil Code § 3294 establishes requiring clear and convincing evidence that a defendant was guilty of oppression, fraud, or malice. 

Malice is defined as conduct intended by a defendant to cause injury to a plaintiff or despicable conduct, which is carried on by a defendant with a willful and conscious disregard for the rights or safety of others. Oppression means despicable conduct that subjects a person to cruel and unjust hardship in conscious disregard of their rights. Fraud is defined as intentional misrepresentation, deceit, or concealment of a material fact known to a defendant with the intention on the part of the defendant of thereby depriving a person of property or legal rights or otherwise causing injury.

There may also be drunk driving cases in which an establishment that sold a person alcohol can also be liable for overserving them. Bars or restaurants may be liable through what are known as dram shop laws, while private people can also be liable because of social host laws.

People who are victims of drunk drivers can obtain many different kinds of damages in these cases, including several economic and non-economic damages in addition to the aforementioned punitive damages. 

If you suffered serious injuries or your loved one was killed in a car accident caused by a drunk driver, you will want to be sure that you engage with qualified San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers. Founded by famous attorney Arash Khorsandi, Esq., Arash Law has handled many drunk or drugged driving accident cases, and we know how to fight to help people recover all of the compensation they are entitled to.

Car Accident
Our client was driving with his wife and son on a two-lane highway when a drunk driver crossed the double yellow lines, causing a head-on collision that claimed the life of a loving wife and mother.

Defining DUI

Driving under the influence (DUI) may refer to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Drugs could be over-the-counter, prescription, or illegal. Drinking, taking drugs, sleeping, or other factors may contribute to impairment. Any driver who is deemed too impaired to drive by a law enforcement officer will be charged with DUI. 

The California DMV states that it is illegal for a person to drive if they have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher if they are over 21 years of age, 0.01 percent or higher if they are under 21 years of age, 0.01 percent or higher at any age if they are on DUI probation, 0.04 percent or higher if they drive a vehicle that requires a commercial driver’s license, and 0.04 percent or higher if they are driving a passenger for hire. A table on the DMV website shows that most people are legally intoxicated after three drinks, although virtually all people will be impaired after a single drink.

California’s DUI laws apply to both alcohol and drugs, so it is illegal to drive while under the influence of alcohol or any drug that affects a person’s ability to drive safely. California Vehicle Code § 23152 is the state law establishing that it is a crime for a person to drive a vehicle while they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. 

DUI remains one of the most serious cases our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers handle. However, many victims fear stepping up and fighting for their rights. If you or a loved one has been injured in a DUI accident, reach out to Arash Law. With over $500 Million recovered for clients throughout California, you can only expect to work with the best of the best.

Drunk Driving Statistics in California

According to the annual report of the California DUI management information system, the number of DUI arrests in the state actually declined between 2008 and 2018. Whereas there were 214,811 total DUI arrests, including 5,966 felony arrests and 208,845 misdemeanor arrests in 2008, there were 127,437 total arrests in 2018. These included 4,919 felony arrests and 122,518 misdemeanor arrests.

There are nearly 100,000 DUI convictions every year, with a conviction rate between 72 and 78 percent. The DMV also reported that alcohol-involved crashes caused more than 1,000 fatalities every year during the time period and more than 25,000 injuries.

Alcohol-involved crash fatalities represented no less than 31.7 percent of total crash fatalities and 9.7 percent of injuries. Drug-involved crash fatalities accounted for as many as 892 fatalities in 2013 and as low as 696 in 2010, while there were more than 3,000 injuries from such crashes in 2015 and 2016, and drug-involved crash fatalities accounted for as much as 28.7 percent of total crash fatalities and as much as 1.2 percent of total crash injuries.

These alarming statistics show that our laws and regulations are nowhere near solving DUI accidents. And so, the help of San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers is always available to those in need. Wherever you are in California, whenever you need us, we’ll be there.

The California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) reported that alcohol-impaired driving fatalities increased 20.0 percent from 966 in 2019 to 1,159 in 2020. The alcohol-impaired driving fatality rate also increased by 4 percent during the same time period, accounting for 30 percent of California’s 3,847 fatalities.

OTS also reported that the number of drivers killed in motor vehicle crashes who tested positive for legal or illegal drugs increased 8 percent from 42 percent in 2018 to 50 percent in 2019. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that approximately 37 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes, or one person every 39 minutes, and the 13,384 people killed in alcohol-impaired driving traffic crashes in 2021 was a 14 percent increase from 2020.

In the event of a DUI crash, you can always expect a helping hand from the dedicated San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers at Arash Law, led by Arash Khorsandi, Esq. You and your families deserve a personalized approach to bring your suffering and pain to justice.

Emperatriz Ayala
Emperatriz Ayala
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My husband had an accident 2 years ago, a 85 years old man hit him, the Arash law group works very well on my husband case that took 9 month and he won the case and my husband was happy with the results. A year later I got into an accident as well and I’m still waiting in my case is almost resolving and it’s 9 months already. This people knows the law and they do their job right to help you out in getting the most for you to fight on your behalf. I strongly recommend the Arash Law firm they do things right in a efficient and professional manner.
Chris Zavala
Chris Zavala
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Had a great experience with all the people at Arash law. Long story short was in a bad car accident. It was overwhelming and the whole process was a lot, but they kept me in the loop. They answered all my questions and gave me great advice. Couldn't be any happier. Would definitely recommend anyone looking for a personal injury lawyer. They'll guide you through the whole process!
Jill Smith
Jill Smith
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Having Arash Law handle my auto accident was the best decision I could have made. Everyone I interacted with was kind, professional and detail oriented. I am extremely happy with the outcome and would recommend them highly.
Joseph R. Porter
Joseph R. Porter
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From start to finish, Arash Law firm is there every step of the way with close, constant, personal contact and attention. I never knew a Law firm could actually care so much for me as a person and what I was personally going through as well as the settlement I was going to recieve once my case was finally completed. Thank you to everyone at Arash Law for your ongoing support and communication. You are the ONLY firm I will ever recommend to someone who is need of a great attorny.
Monica Parra
Monica Parra
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I had an excellent experience with Arash Law. I will definitely recommend to my family and friends. I interviewed a few firms before deciding to work with Arash Law. What made my experience excellent was (i.e. head attorney being accessible to talk to and he answered all my questions and concerns, sensitive and thorough personel who completed in home intake & follow up process, being connected immediately to quality Physicians who addressed my injuries and recovery process, clear contract-read throughly to ensure its something you can commit to). Being in a car accident is a traumatic experience and I had a sense of peace knowing Arash Firm was walking with me throughout the whole process. Thank you Arash Firm for all your hard work and help. I am so grateful and appreciative for you all! 🙏 With Gratitude, Monica Parra

Errors Drunk Drivers Make

People who are intoxicated do not operate as safely as sober motorists. There are several actions a drunk driver can commit that might cause a traffic accident, with common examples including:

  • Speeding
  • Failing to obey traffic signals or signs
  • Improper turns
  • Failure to yield the right of way
  • Failure to use turn signals or headlights
  • Not seeing pedestrians

Common Kinds of Drunk Driving Collisions

According to the University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley), the top five crash types for alcohol-impaired driving fatality and severe injury collisions were as follows:
  • Hitting objects – 44.5 percent
  • Rear-end collisions – 13.5 percent
  • Broadside collisions – 12.1 percent
  • Overturned accidents – 11.7 percent
  • Head-on collisions – 11.2 percent
Regardless of the type of crash, those who are harmed due to an impaired driver can depend on our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers to fight until they receive maximum compensation for their injuries.

How Common Are Drunk Driving Accidents in California?

NHTSA also reported that California had the second-highest number of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities in the nation with 1,159, behind only Texas with 1,495. The percentage of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities among total traffic fatalities in 2020 in California was 30 percent.

NHTSA reported that California had 3,847 traffic fatalities in 2020, with 1,159 people having BACs of 0.08 percent or higher (30 percent) and 765 having BACs of 0.15 percent or higher (20 percent). The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) said NHTSA reported an increase in traffic deaths across the country, with 9,560 people killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes in the first quarter of 2022 and a 7 percent increase compared to the 8,935 fatalities for the same quarter in 2021.

At Arash Law, the team of San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers led by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., knows the struggle victims and their families experience following a DUI crash. Tragic events such as this require paramount dedication and aggressive representation–we offer both and more.

Errors Drunk Drivers Make
Proving a Drunk Driving Accident Claim

Suing Drunk Drivers for Damages

California’s comparative fault system means that any person is allowed to file a lawsuit to recover damages following a car accident, even a person who was 99 percent responsible for causing a crash.

The catch to the system is that a person’s award can be reduced by their degree of responsibility, meaning a person who is awarded $100,000 in an accident case but is found to have been 40 percent at fault will have their award reduced by $40,000 and ultimately recover $60,000. When you’re represented by our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers, you can expect them to pursue the maximum settlement or award for your injuries.

People can always sue drunk drivers for injury claims and property damage to motor vehicles, in addition to other concerns. Arash Law, under the management of Arash Khorsandi, Esq., regularly helps people recover such damages as:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Copays or other medical costs
  • Medications
  • Medical equipment
  • Future medical care
  • Lost future earnings because of disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost or reduced earning capacity
  • Emotional distress
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Home modifications
  • In-home assistance or care costs

Punitive damages are, again, a rarer kind of award, but they are often applicable to drunk driving cases. The total amount of compensation a person can obtain will depend on the specific circumstances relating to their crash.

It is important for people to understand that drunk driving cases often result in criminal charges, but criminal cases are far different from civil ones. A prosecutor must prove a person’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal case, while a person only needs to prove another party’s negligence by a preponderance of the evidence, meaning more likely than not, in a civil case.

A drunk driver may very well avoid a criminal conviction with a good defense, but they can still be found liable in a civil case. Consider the case of O.J. Simpson, who was found not guilty of murdering both his wife, Nicole Brown, and her companion, Ronald Goldman. Later, however, a civil jury found him liable for the wrongful death of and battery against Goldman and battery against Brown, ordering him to pay $33.5 million in damages.

With the help and guidance of qualified and experienced San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers, you can achieve justice for all of your pain and suffering stemming from the DUI collision. The attorneys at Arash Law will leave no stone unturned to ensure you get the best outcome for your injuries.

In general, damages usually break down as follows:

  • Compensatory damages – Compensatory damages typically include economic damages that cover actual costs that can be proven and non-economic damages for more subjective losses.
  • Punitive damages – When a driver who causes an accident has a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher, punitive damages are intended more to punish the driver than reward a plaintiff. While some states place a limit commonly called a cap on punitive damages, California has no such law.
  • Wrongful death – When a loved one is killed in a drunk driving accident, California Code of Civil Procedure § 377.60 lets the following family members or personal representatives file lawsuits: Surviving spouses, domestic partners, children, and grandchildren when a deceased person’s children are also deceased, any other minor children dependent on the deceased for at least 50 percent of their financial support, and any other party entitled to a deceased person’s property under California intestate succession laws.

Proving a Drunk Driving Accident Claim

Following a drunk driving accident, the drunk driver is usually placed under arrest. A person’s arrest, in itself, can be evidence used in a civil case.

There may be additional forms of evidence in these cases, such as proof of the type of negligence that a drunk driver engaged in before causing an accident. The bottom line for a drunk driving accident victim is that they must demonstrate a drunk driver was negligent when they caused a crash.

The leading San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers at Arash Law will dedicate their hours to gather necessary data, strong evidence, and credible witnesses to build a solid case for you. Fighting for your rights is our business.

How Comparative Negligence Works in California

Unlike certain other states that do not allow people to file lawsuits when they were 50 percent or more at fault for an accident, California does not place any restrictions on who can take legal action. People can still recover compensation even if they were primarily at fault for an accident.

Comparative negligence involves comparing the negligence of the parties involved to see which party is responsible for more blame. While California law allows all people to file lawsuits, such actions may be impractical for people who know they are primarily to blame for causing a collision.

Negligence Per Se

To prove another person’s negligence, an individual will typically present information that establishes another person’s conduct fell below the applicable standard of care and that their actions were the actual and proximate cause of their injuries. There are cases, however, when a person’s conduct violates a local, state, or federal law, and the inference of negligence is raised to negligence per se.

People can be presumed to be negligent as a matter of law when:

  • They violated a statute, ordinance, or regulation.
  • The violation resulted in the death or injury of a person.
  • The harm caused was the type of harm the statute was designed to prevent.
  • The victim was the type of person the statute was designed to protect.

Negligence per se often arises in drunk driving accident claims, and the burden will fall on the drunk driver to prove they were not negligent. In most cases, DUI convictions themselves can be introduced as evidence of negligence per se.

As a victim of a DUI accident, you can trust our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers to pursue the highest possible compensation for your injuries. Having recovered over $500 Million on behalf of clients throughout California, you can be confident you’re working with the best legal representation there is.

Patricia R.
Truck Accident Settlement
A top rated and large delivery truck company rear ended our client on the freeway. Our client was a middle aged woman who suffered neck and back injuries. The defense tried to blame it on her weight and pre-existing conditions. Eventually, we were able to resolve the matter at mediation, before going to trial.
Truck Accident Settlement
A top rated and large delivery truck company rear ended our client on the freeway. Our client was a middle aged woman who suffered neck and back injuries. The defense tried to blame it on her weight and pre-existing conditions. Eventually, we were able to resolve the matter at mediation, before going to trial.

Common Kinds of San Francisco Drunk Driving Accident Injuries

Even when people are fortunate enough to survive a drunk driving crash, they still suffer major injuries that can lead to several months or even years of rehabilitation. Frequent types of injuries in these cases include:

  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Open head wounds
  • Whiplash
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Neck injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Internal organ damage
  • Severe lacerations or puncture wounds
  • Amputations
  • Crush injuries

Physical injuries are only one part of the greater equation in these cases, as many victims will also be dealing with severe emotional and psychological complications. Your award-winning San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers at Arash Law understand the struggles that DUI crash victims face and work hard to make sure they can recover all of the compensation they need to get back on their feet.

Drunk Driving Accident Laws in San Francisco

Victims of drunk driving accidents have the same statute of limitations as other motor vehicle crash victims, which means a case needs to be filed within two years of the date of an accident. When people do not act within this time frame, they can lose their right to recover anything.

You do not want to wait to retain legal counsel in these types of cases. Arash Law and its San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers can immediately conduct a thorough independent investigation into your accident. We can negotiate with a drunk driver’s insurance company for an appropriate settlement, and we will not hesitate to take the case to trial if an insurer is unwilling to provide a fair and full amount.

Common Kinds of San Francisco Drunk Driving Accident Injuries
Motor Vehicle Accident
Settlement in a motor vehicle accident; client suffered internal injuries.

When Drunk Drivers Are Not The Only Responsible Parties

California Civil Code § 1714 establishes that “the furnishing of alcoholic beverages is not the proximate cause of injuries resulting from intoxication, but rather the consumption of alcoholic beverages is the proximate cause of injuries inflicted upon another by an intoxicated person.” This law effectively shields many bars and restaurants from liability for a drunk driving accident, but there are certainly cases in which dram shop and social host laws can come into effect.

Both merchants selling alcohol and private people serving it can be liable when they provide alcohol to a minor under 21 years of age. The key in these cases will be proving that another party knowingly furnished alcohol to a minor.

Dram shop and social host claims can be exceptionally challenging to prove, so you will want to be sure you have an experienced attorney on your side in these cases. A knowledgeable lawyer will best be able to prove the extent of your harm and know how to hold all liable parties accountable.

Under the guidance of Arash Khorsandi Esq., our team of San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers has a wealth of experience handling these types of cases and will know how to work to make sure you can get every last dollar available to you. You can count on our firm to take your case seriously and work tirelessly to achieve the most favorable outcome to your case.

What Is The Average Settlement for A Drunk Driving Accident in San Francisco?

Each DUI accident is different, but there’s always at least one person who suffers injuries. We examined our drunk driving lawsuit settlements to determine the average settlement amount for drunk driving accidents.

In California, it’s impossible to estimate the average amount for being hit by a drunk driver. Typically, it depends on the different circumstances of your case. No matter what the actual amount is, you need dedicated San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers on your side to help resolve your case. These legal experts will assist you in collecting evidence and determining the damages.

You will also be helped by your San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers to prove that you were not at fault by navigating comparative negligence rules. Insurance companies for the other party will try to prove that you are partly responsible, and they have attorneys to do so. To have a chance of winning the maximum amount for your injuries, you’ll need the help of skilled San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers.

Why Should People Hire San Francisco DUI Accident Victim Lawyers?

While many people want to believe that a drunk driving accident case is a clear-cut case of one person breaking the law and causing harm, it is important to understand that the insurance companies handling these types of cases still have bottom lines they are trying to protect. An insurer is almost certain to raise whatever issue it can to minimize what it has to pay. But qualified San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers know how to deal with these insurance companies when they try to trap you into saying the wrong thing.

People in these situations need to be very cautious in their dealings with any insurance company, as many insurers will try to trick people into making damaging admissions that hurt their cases. You should never agree to provide a recorded statement to an insurer, no matter how necessary they claim it is to move forward with your case, as recorded statements are typically utilized to try and get people to say things that hurt their cases unknowingly.

Arash Law, managed by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., understands how difficult of a position people recovering from drunk driving accidents are in, and we represent our clients on a contingency fee basis, so you will not have to worry about paying us anything upfront. Our skilled San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers are instead paid when we win or settle your case so that you can breathe a little bit easier.

Call Us to Speak with San Francisco DUI Accident Victim Lawyers Today

There is little doubt that any drunk driving accident can cause widespread devastation in a person’s life, and it can be complicated for people to know the best ways to proceed following one of these crashes. When you suffer severe injuries or your loved one is killed in any drunk driving crash in the greater San Francisco area, you should be sure to talk to one of our San Francisco DUI accident victim lawyers as soon as you can.

We serve clients in San Francisco and nearby locations, including Stockton, Fremont, San Jose, Oakland, and Sacramento. Arash Law also caters to the entire state of California, and we can come to you 24/7.

Our firm has more than 40 years of experience helping all kinds of drunk driving accident victims, and our record of success includes more than $500 Million recovered for our clients. You can call the Arash Law Firm today at (888) 488-1391 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation to discuss your case with us.

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