There are many consequences if you drive drunk in Henderson, Nevada. You can be arrested, charged, and convicted of a Nevada DUI, of course, with the fines, loss of rights, and potential jail time that comes with it. But you can also seriously injure or kill someone else (which means you may be charged with the more serious offense of felony DUI).
If someone you hurt or the family of someone you killed while driving drunk in Henderson, Nevada sues you for damages in a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, can your DUI arrest and conviction be used as evidence against you in that case?
While Clark County prosecutors pursue a criminal DUI case against you, anyone injured or the family of someone killed in an accident in which you were involved can file a civil lawsuit against you for damages. The evidence used by prosecutors to obtain a conviction – police reports, field sobriety tests, Breathalyzer tests, witness statements, etc. – can also be used to prove negligence in a personal injury lawsuit. If you are ultimately convicted of DUI, that conviction can be used as conclusive evidence that you were negligent; that you were “negligent per se.”
Even if you are neither charged nor convicted of DUI because you were below Nevada's legal limit, any evidence of alcohol in your system obtained by police can be used as part of a plaintiff's effort to prove that you were impaired at the time of the accident.
A conviction for Nevada DUI causing injury or death in Nevada is a category B felony that can result in a Nevada prison term of 2 to 20 years, and fines from $2,000 to $5,000 among other consequences. If you've been charged with DUI in Henderson, Nevada, you need to retain an experienced DUI attorney as soon as possible to protect yourself from these potential results. Call one of our Henderson, Nevada DUI attorneys today to discuss your situation.