Will Insurance Cover My Accident if I Was Drunk Driving?

by Eric Chaffin | Last Updated: May 3, 2021

In most cases, the answer is yes. Exceptions may exist, however, if the insurance company believes that you caused the accident for financial gain.

The key factor is intentionality; i.e., was the accident– accidental? Or was it a willful attempt to cash in on insurance benefits? If so, then the consequences can include denial of your claim or even criminal prosecution.

When accidents are intentional

Insurers work hard to prevent people from deliberately causing car collisions. We applaud them for these efforts because insurance fraud is a crime that hurts all of us to the tune of $40 billion a year.

Does this apply to the topic of drunk driving?  It does, yes. Your insurance company might see your alcohol use as evidence of deliberate negligence on your part. It may even use this as a basis for denying your claim.

This points out the need to talk to a Pittsburgh personal injury attorney after an auto accident– no matter the circumstances. Preparing for pitfalls before they come along can help you to get the full compensation you deserve. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a no-win situation.

It’s all about building a strong case

If you’re a fan of TV courtroom shows, then you may have gotten the impression that being a lawyer is all about theatrics. According to this– the attorney who prevails is the one who plays on the emotions of the judge or jury.

While this makes for good drama, it bears little resemblance to what a Pittsburgh personal injury lawyer does on a day-to-day basis. In the real world, contested insurance claims are decided based on who builds the best case.

In the drunk driving example we discussed above, the insurer is basing its denial on the claim that you intentionally caused the wreck. Challenging this assertion requires a skilled Pittsburgh car accident attorney— one who can point out the weaknesses in their case.

Putting it all in perspective

Those who operate a motor vehicle while under the influence pose a danger to all of us. At the same time, however, we’re also opposed to insurance companies who try to renege on their financial responsibilities.

Sadly, we’ve seen this sort of behavior play itself out more times than we can count, usually to the injured person’s detriment.

In a perfect world, none of us would ever make mistakes. But the real world is far from perfect, as we all know. Whatever lapses in judgment may stain your past, you have the right to receive the insurance benefits you’ve paid for.

When it’s time to get a lawyer

Talking to an attorney is always a smart move after a car wreck. Here’s why we say this:

  • Legal issues are rarely as cut-and-dry as they first appear: You may believe that you’re the sole party who’s liable for the collision when, in fact, just the opposite is true. It takes a skilled attorney to see all the aspects of a case.
  • You can never have too much information: Insurance adjustors count on you knowing less than they do. Nothing can fix that faster than having all the facts.
  • The days after an accident are a time to be proactive, not passive: The steps you take now will affect the rest of the life, either for good or bad. This is no time to sit back and let others decide your fate.

Once you decide to seek legal counsel, the next step is to choose the right law firm. Here’s why Chaffin Luhana may be the best fit for your needs:

  • Our history: We’ve spent our careers helping ordinary people to get the compensation they deserve.
  • Our results: Our attorneys have recovered more than $1 billion for their clients. That kind of track record speaks volumes about our legal skills.
  • Our 24/7 availability: You can reach a member of our staff anytime day or night, either with a phone call or by reaching out to us online.

Contact Chaffin Luhana today to schedule your free consultation. We have 85 years of combined experience, and our core value is “Doing Good by Doing Right.”