·  Legal News, Analysis, & Commentary


Causing an Accident is an Aggravating Factor in DWI Cases in Charlotte, NC

— May 18, 2022

Causing an accident while committing a DWI offense also results in the imposition of aggravating factors.

Charlotte, NC – North Carolina and other states always have to deal with serious problems caused by intoxicated drivers. There are severe criminal penalties to try to deter drunk driving and related issues caused by these drivers, and these penalties can be enhanced if the person causes a collision before being caught. A driver who causes an accident will also likely be sued in civil court to pay for the problems that they caused.

Because of both the criminal and civil legal implications of drunk driving, attorneys near me routinely deal with issues related to intoxicated drivers and it is recommended that anyone who has been involved in a collision get representation. 

State drunk driving laws

North Carolina uses the term driving while impaired or DWI to describe offenses that relate to drivers who operate vehicles while under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances. The legal limit for blood alcohol concentration of drivers is .08 for drivers of standard vehicles, .04 while operating a commercial vehicle, and any presence of a controlled substance that is sufficient to impair the driver’s abilities is also illegal. 

Drunk driving accidents and aggravating factors 

Causing an accident while committing a DWI offense also results in the imposition of aggravating factors. This means that fines and jail time can be increased, as well as additional conditions that can be imposed as part of a sentence. Other aggravating factors include things such as prior drunk driving convictions, a high blood alcohol concentration, or having a minor in the vehicle while driving under the influence. The state’s sentencing guidelines divide DWI crimes into levels based on the number of aggravating or mitigating factors present. 

Civil accident cases

Gavel and rolled document saying “Personal Injury” resting atop maroon book saying “Law.” Image by Claimaccident, via
Image by Claimaccident, via

Charlotte accident lawyers have the ability to make drunk drivers pay through the civil court system as well. An accident victim can file a negligence case to argue for various kinds of damages. This essentially means that the defendant will have to pay for all of the costs associated with the accident if the case is successful. Unlike in the criminal case, the plaintiff in a civil lawsuit does not have to necessarily prove that the defendant was legally drunk while they were driving or that they were convicted of the charges against them. In a civil negligence case, evidence of fault can come from any deviation from the standard of care required on the roads such as other traffic violations. 

Additional legal advice in North Carolina is a website that works with local clients to solve their legal problems and get them connected with the right lawyer. Anyone who needs more information about these processes or advice from Charlotte DWI accident lawyers can call them at 800-672-3103

Join the conversation!