Alcohol types

3 types of drunk driving offenses in Washington, DC

Washington, DC is one of the few places in the United States that uses pure contributory negligence law.

washington d.c. – The legal drinking limit is 21 in Washington, DC, so a driver under that age cannot have alcohol in their system. For adult drivers, the drinking and driving law is very complicated and distinguishes between three categories of impairment.

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) – If a driver has a blood alcohol level (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, they can be charged with DWI, even if they appear perfectly capable of driving and are not involved in an accident.

Driving under the influence (DUI) – If a driver has a blood alcohol level of 0.07 or less, they may face an impaired driving charge if the police officer decides that their ability to drive was impaired. This is because people react differently to alcohol and a person may be unfit to drive even if they have only had a little to drink. The police officer will charge a driver with impaired driving if that person’s behavior appears erratic or if they fail a sobriety test, such as having to walk in a straight line.

Impaired driving – This is a lesser charge than DUI and there are no BAC limits. It all depends on the police officer’s perception that the driver’s ability is impaired by drugs or alcohol.

If you have been involved in an accident caused by an impaired driver, you should immediately consult experienced impaired driving accident attorneys in Washington, DC. The fact that the driver was intoxicated can be used to prove negligence, which is essential in a personal injury claim. Your lawyers will also need to show how the accident happened to prove that the other driver was to blame if you don’t want to lose your right to claim damages.

How does contributory negligence law affect DWI accident claims?

Washington, DC is one of the few places in the United States that uses pure contributory negligence law. Under this law, you cannot recover any damage if you are even slightly at fault in a car accident.

Graphic of an African American man in a suit with his arms crossed, standing near a desk with a hammer resting on it. The scales of justice hang on the wall behind the desk. Graphic by Mohamed Hassan, via, public domain CC0.

Let’s say the other driver had a blood alcohol level of .32 or four times the legal limit. The guy was so drunk he lost control of the car and hit you. You may think you are perfectly entitled to seek damages for your injuries. Yet if it turns out that you were playing with the stereo or arguing with your child in the backseat at the time of the accident, the adjuster may claim that you were a bit distracted, which makes you 5% to blame. That’s all it takes for you to lose damage no matter how badly you’ve been hurt. The other driver may even go to jail, but you still don’t get any damages.

How can you recover damages for a drunk driving accident in Washington, DC?

The best thing you can do is contact experienced accident attorneys in Washington, DC and let them handle all communication with the insurance company. Washington, DC has a no-fault insurance policy, which allows you to collect damages under your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy. The amount you can recover depends on the type of coverage you have. With minimal coverage, you may not receive enough money to pay your hospital bills and make up for lost wages. Also, the PIP does not include damages for your pain and suffering. If you have suffered serious injuries that cause you a lot of pain and require prolonged medical attention, you may need to sue the other driver.

Lawyers near me

If you are looking for an accident lawyer or need professional help with other legal matters, you may be wondering “Where can I find lawyers near me?” Don’t worry, help is just a few clicks away. Simply follow the link to access the extensive database at Select the area of ​​law you’re interested in, your state and city, and schedule a free consultation with a trusted attorney in your area.