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The phone call that changed your life forever

You might be one among others in Ohio who has lived through the devastating moments of a phone call informing you that your beloved family member was killed in a terrible car accident. If you also learned that police suspect your loved one's death was caused by a drunk driver, it is understandable you have a strong desire to see justice served on behalf of the one who died.

Drunk driving is a huge problem in many areas. Did you know that studies have shown there are certain days of the year more dangerous for roadway travel than others? In fact, from Thanksgiving through New Year, there is a significant increase in DUI arrests, as well as fatal car accidents that are alcohol-related.

Other days that put travelers at risk

Following is a list of what many believe are the most dangerous days to drive or travel as a passenger in a car:

  • Fourth of July: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ranks this as the single deadliest day of the year.
  • Christmas: One study of accidents between 2005 and 2009 showed fatalities caused by impaired motorists rose at least 34 percent during this time.
  • Saint Patrick's Day and Cinco de Mayo: Cultural and religious holidays that involve social celebrations often lead to higher numbers of deadly accidents.
  • Super Bowl Sunday: The events surrounding this pastime align with higher numbers of fatal car accidents, including many that involve drunk drivers.

Whether your loved one's accident occurred on one of these days or a non-holiday, as an immediate family member, you are entitled to seek full recovery for your losses.

Reaching out for support

Nothing can take the place of your family member who has died. When you first heard the news, you most likely were unable to think beyond your shock and intense sorrow.

As time passes, however, you may find yourself facing unexpected challenges associated with your loved one's accident, such as insurance complications, medical bills, funeral expenses or financial strain due to loss of wages (especially if your loved one was a primary breadwinner in your family).

A good friend, counselor or minister may be able to help you through the grieving process. As for the other issues, the following ideas may be helpful:

  • An experienced personal injury attorney who is familiar with the insurance laws and process in Ohio would be able to address any concerns you have regarding such matters.
  • By filing a wrongful death claim against the party deemed responsible for your loved one's death, you can take the first steps toward obtaining compensation for damages that can be used to offset any financial debt associated with the accident.

You may decide to implement a combination of the options listed here to seek restitution for the emotional and economic suffering you've endured.

If the driver believed to have caused the accident in which your family member was involved is facing DUI charges in criminal court, your attorney may use that information as evidence to help substantiate your claim, should you choose to file one in a civil court.

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