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Injured in Iowa: Drunk driving and your rights as a victim

As a victim of a drunk driving accident, you want to know what you can do to make it clear that drunk driving is dangerous and that compensation is owed to you. There are many facts that can back your case. For instance, Iowa has an implied consent law that requires anyone to give a blood, breath, or urine test to an officer of the law if asked. If the person who hit you refuses, this can be used against the individual in court. If refused refuse, he or she will be losing one's license for at least a year; that's the law.

Here's a little-known fact: Drinking alcohol cuts your night vision in half. So, if you were struck by an impaired driver at night, he or she may not have even seen you coming. The person shouldn't have been driving, and that is very clear to most courts. There's no reason the impaired individual should get away without fines and punishments for that crime.

It's illegal to drive while under the influence of alcohol or street drugs. If the BAC test comes back at 0.08 percent or higher, the person who hit you can be charged and eventually convicted of a DUI, DWI, or OWI under the law in Iowa.

OWI offenders face serious punishments. For example, if this was the driver's first offense, one can lose one's license for at least 180 days and may be subject to criminal penalties and fines. You, as the victim, can also bring a civil lawsuit against the other party for the damages to your vehicle and the injuries you've suffered.

Source: DMV.org, "DUI & DWI in Iowa" Oct. 15, 2014

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