Can You Get A DUI On A Golf Cart In Florida?
The arrest recently of a Villages resident answers this questions loud and clear. Yes, you can get a DUI on a golf cart. Many people believe that since a golf cart does not look like or have the characteristics of a vehicle then the driver must be immune from getting hit with a DUI.
No, not true; you can get a DUI on a golf cart. Hint: If you can get a DUI on a bicycle—and you can under Florida law—then you can get a DUI in a golf cart.
The larger implications are that if a driver hits someone with their golf cart while they are DUI then they are in for likely both civil—the injured person will make a claim against them—and criminal—the State of Florida will make a criminal case against them.
If the incident causes a serious injury or death as a result of drunken driving the criminal side can be very serious indeed. For personal injuries and death, trust a golf cart incident attorney to come to your aid in The Villages.
DUIs and Golf Carts
The problem for those of us not in the golf cart is that they can cause major injuries and death. In order to be considered a golf cart under Florida law the speed of the cart needs to be 20 miles per hour or less. A golf car is a vehicle capable of speeds up to 25 miles per hour under Florida law.
Note that we see that many of these golf cars are capable of reaching speeds well in excess of 25 miles per hour. Golf cars also must be equipped with tail lights and headlights.
A typical golf cart can weigh 1000 pounds or more.
Placed in the hands of someone who is DUI a golf car or golf cart can certainly be a dangerous instrument indeed. In fact, Florida law looks at golf carts and golf cars as dangerous instruments. If you want to know more about what that means for your case, give us, your golf cart incident attorney, a call to discuss. It is a very vital point. We will come to you in The Villages.
One other aspect of a person being DUI on a golf car or golf cart is that this is fertile ground for an injured person claiming punitive damages. For the driver, insurance companies generally do not cover for punitive damages. That is perhaps not a widely known fact. Insurance policies do not cover the insured person for punitive damages on:
- golf carts, etc.
Clear And Convincing Evidence
The standard for a claimant to claim punitive damages is that there must be “clear and convincing evidence” that driver was guilty of “intentional misconduct or gross negligence”. In day-to-day actuality—where there is proof of a DUI—Florida courts are allowing a claimant to revise his/her Complaint to include a claim for punitive damages against the driver of the golf cart.
To understand your options with your personal injury case, call a golf cart incident attorney who can come to you in The Villages.
Seek Help from a Golf Cart Incident Attorney
If a claimant can state a claim for punitive damages because the at-fault driver was DUI, Florida law allows the claimant to seek financial information from the defendant within the civil case. Yes. This means a plaintiff can ask the defendant to produce the following records:
- financial records,
- information on houses,
- information on cars,
- information on land,
- tax returns,
The plaintiff can also force the driver to produce a list of assets, and other financial data. If a person is a claimant, punitive damages are good news; however, if a person is the accused DUI driver, not only may the driver have to produce financial data, that driver may also be required to sit for a deposition under oath and answer questions about their financial assets.
For personal injury cases, trust a golf cart incident attorney.
For the driver, taking even a chance on a DUI is just not worth it. Get a designated driver. And don’t believe you cannot be hit with a DUI on a golf cart. You can. And, your insurance is not going to cover punitive damages against you if you caused injuries to a passenger, pedestrian or other golf cart operator while DUI.
For personal injury-related accidents in The Villages, call a golf cart incident attorney at Frank D. Butler, P.A.
Trust the Law Firm of Frank D. Butler, P.A. for a Golf Cart Incident Attorney
If you are involved in a golf cart crash, ejected from a golf cart, or hit by a golf cart we are ready to help you. Trust us to be your golf cart incident attorney. We will come to you personally in The Villages.
We are ready to help you now.